Microsoft Tips its Hat to Hadoop, Red Hat in New Moves

by Ostatic Staff - Nov. 09, 2015

It's looking like Microsoft has finally, truly warmed up to Linux and open source tools and platforms. Several media outlets have reported on CEO Satya Nadella (shown here) and his comments on how he "loves Linux." He also reportedly claims that more than a third of Microsoft's Azure cloud is already Linux-based.

Furthering this trend, Microsoft has a new partnership with Red Hat to ensure that applications developed in the Microsoft .NET Framework language can run on RHEL, OpenShift and the new Red Hat Atomic Host container platform. And, Microsoft has announced the availability of Azure HDInsight, a fully managed Apache Hadoop cluster service running on Linux in its Azure cloud.

As CIO reports:

"...the Linux-based ecosystem for big data tools is bigger, and many companies already run Hadoop on Linux in their own data centers – making it easier for them to create a hybrid cloud environment for their big data activities, if they can use Linux in Microsoft's (or anyone else's) public cloud as well."

"Offering Azure HD Insight on Linux is also a good business move because there is ferocious competition between cloud providers – particularly between Amazon's AWS, Azure and Google, Wes Miller says."

And ZDNet adds:

"On the Microsoft side, T.K. Ranga Rengarajan, corporate VP of databases and big data, said, 'The general availability of Azure HDInsight on Ubuntu Linux ... includes a service level agreement guarantee of 99.9% uptime and full technical support for the entire stack with the choice of running Hadoop workloads on Hortonworks Data Platform in Azure HDInsight using Ubuntu or Windows. There's also a growing ecosystem of ISV's delivering tools to create big data solutions on the Azure data platform with HDInsight."

As for the Red Hat partnership that Microsoft has struck, it looks far reaching. The partnership calls for a Red Hat engineering team to move to Redmond to provide joint technical support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux workloads running in the Microsoft Azure public cloud and on its hybrid cloud offerings.

There are times when the best strategy is to play nicely with the competition, and the new regime at Microsoft seems to be realizing that playing nicely with open source tools and platforms is the best strategic path to take.