This week at its annual Ignite conference, Microsoft showcased its hybrid capabilities and announced many new advancements that will help enterprise customers to remove cloud barriers and seize the opportunities that cloud brings with it, especially the hybrid cloud model.
“Azure has long been committed to enabling the only true consistent cloud experience from identity, to data, to platform, to security and management. We uniquely understand that a distributed hybrid cloud model is the durable cloud model. And, we uniquely understand that hybrid cloud is more than just infrastructure – it must address your entire environment,” said Microsoft EVP of Cloud and Enterprise Scott Guthrie in a blog post
Hybrid cloud is playing a central role in most organizations’ cloud strategy and is considered to be a future-proof and long-term approach by the customers. It is considered essential in the world of AI and IoT.
Mark Jewett, Microsoft Director of Product Marketing, Cloud Platform, said in his blog post “We asked 2,500 IT professionals about their approach to cloud, and 91 percent of these IT workers believe hybrid cloud will remain the approach for their organizations five years from now.”
Out of the many solutions that Microsoft has built to help advance hybrid scenarios, Azure Stack is an absolute game-changer. It allows flexible deployment in the cloud or on premises, thus enabling a consistent development experience for cloud-native and traditional applications.
As a commitment to provide consistent hybrid cloud to its enterprise IT customers, Microsoft made few announcements:
- Azure Stack integrated systems available for shipping and purchase
Azure Stack, an extension of Azure that enables organizations to build and deploy apps with the same APIs, tools and experiences as they use in Azure, is available for purchase. OEM partners – Dell EMC, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, and Lenovo are the shipping systems for Azure Stack integrated systems. Customers can purchase Azure Stack from them and get the help to deploy and install it, to run their applications.
With it, developers can build an application and run it in both – Azure and Azure Stack and it will meet every regulatory requirement.
- A new unified Azure database migration tooling experience
Microsoft has built a fully managed Azure SQL Database service, with 100 percent SQL Server compatibility for no code changes via managed instance and has introduced a new and fully automated Azure Database Migration Service that will enable customers have a near-zero downtime migration, thus helping them save time and lower costs significantly.
- General availability of Microsoft SQL Server 2017 on Linux, Windows, and Docker
Customers will be able to run SQL Server 2017 on Windows Server, Linux, and Docker, for the first time. With this, customers will get support for scalable Python and R-based analytics and help to enable in-database advanced machine learning. This will allow developers to train advanced models easily with data inside SQL Server, without the need of moving data.
SQL Server 2017 GA will help developers deliver high performance and data security with everything built in, including AI, using their preferred platform and language
- Extension of Azure Security center protection to hybrid environments
Microsoft has extended new security capabilities to its Azure customers. They will now be able to detect and defend advanced threats and protect their workloads running on premises or in cloud. Security Center will unify security management across environments and provide intelligent threat protection using analytics and the Microsoft Intelligent Security Graph.
We will keep you posted with more news from Microsoft Ignite this week. Stay tuned!