* Posts by Charles Young

5 posts • joined 30 Oct 2007

Linux, not Microsoft, the real winner of Windows Server on ARM

Charles Young

Re: Bit confused

I'm always confused by this kind of argument...as if people live on a completely separate planet to the one I live on. Microsoft positioned itself some time ago as the convincing number 2 in cloud computing, and has sustained increasing cloud market share over several years (i.e., they are gradually playing catch-up with AWS market share, though there is still some considerable way to go). Anyone who has had dealings with the company over the last few years (all of this current decade) knows that Microsoft long-since adopted a rigorous cloud-first policy internally. The issue for them is not how to maintain x86 legacy apps in the cloud - something that can be done technically, but gets little explicit attention from them. Azure, at the heart of Microsoft's ambitions, is very clearly not about maintaining some old x86 and desktop legacy! I don't get how anyone could seriously think that is the case.

My world is taken up with designing and implementing a modern microservice architecture for a continent-wide industry sector application on what is arguably the world's most advanced generally-available hyper-scale/high-availability technology platform, Azure Service Fabric, which is significantly more advanced technically than, say, Kubernetes (to which Microsoft contribute) or Docker Swarm (which Microsoft is committed to supporting). We are using the Windows version, but they ported Service Fabric to Linux because, very simply, all that counts in the cloud is consumption of CPU cycles and storage. x86 legacy? I think not. Service Fabric is in its fifth-generation and the foundation on which so much of Azure is built.

We all know the world has moved on since the PC-centric days of the 1990s. Microsoft has lost several battles since those days, to be sure. But the underlying assumption in the article and several comments here is that they have failed to grasp that the world has moved on. This is clearly untrue. It has been very clearly untrue for a very long time. It doesn't begin to describe their strategies and practices in recent years. It's really is high time people moved on in their thinking about market players like Microsoft. No point being stuck in the 1990s, now is there?

BizTalk-as-a-Service dog wags Microsoft's on-premises tail

Charles Young

Curiously out of date...

Guys, this article and some of the comments are a little misinformed.

Microsoft adopted a 'cloud-first' policy across the company several years ago (back in the days of Ballmer). This is now deeply baked into the technology and product roadmaps. Product groups across the company are required to put cloud services, including Azure, at the centre of their plans and the investments they make. This is old news, and applies as much to their efforts in the integration space as anything else. The 'cloud' dog has been wagging the Microsoft tail for a long time now.

Yes, there is lots of BizTalk stuff going on behind the scenes which Microsoft will announce in detail when they are good and ready. Yes, the aim of 'symmetry' is strongly in evidence, and yes, the cadence across all of Azure, including BizTalk Services is far more frequent than for on-premises server products. It has been for several years now.

BizTalk Services, which is currently at a very basic version 1.0 stage, is a PaaS offering. The central value proposition of PaaS is that the service provider (Microsoft, in this case) controls the stack all the way up to and including the run-time environment (the code container), including patching. That includes the networking, hardware, virtualisation, Guest OSs, middleware, etc., as dogged has pointed out in his comment. This is a very, very different model to on-premises, co-lo or even managed service hosting used for products like BizTalk Server. BizTalk Server therefore continues to have a much slower cadence of releases. Hybrid-ness is vital in this new world, and if you look carefully at what Microsoft is doing publically on Azure today, you can spot some of the ways that future releases of BizTalk Services will support the hybrid model. Can't go into any more detail 'cos of NDA, but watch this space. I will say that the BizTalk world is certainly feeling some heat at present from some of the light-weight cloud-based integration options out there, and this will be responded to comprehensively in due course.

Oi, Microsoft, where's my effin' toolbar gone?

Charles Young

Probably a memory issue

The problems you describe are most likely to be related to memory issues, and are probably not anything to do with Word itself. Microsoft is constantly blamed for just about anything that goes wrong on a PC, whether or not the underlying cause is in their control or not. Try closing down other apps and see if the problem goes away.

Microsoft pushes Windows Phone Mango out to Japan

Charles Young

Yes, just a troll...

Yes, just the typical anti-MS troll. Windows Phone is a really promising platform and Mango is much better that the current release (I've had a play on a beta version). MS certainly have a lot to prove - no one denies that - but their strategy for Windows Phone alongside the forthcoming release of Windows 8 does, I think, have potential to win a significant share of the market. Certainly my company is planning to move from iPhone to Mango later this year, and much as I love my company iPhone, I'm looking forward to the move.

Buzzword bingo for Microsoft's Oslo

Charles Young
IT Angle

...but on the other hand...

Yes, its true that Microsoft is behind the curve. Having pushed ahead several years ago by being early adopters of XML-centric messaging and integration, and having done some great work on the application of bleeding-edge computer science to the whole subject or process automation, Microsoft has allowed its competitors to win back much of the mind-share through ESB architectures and ever-richer BPM tooling. However, I think there is a another, more positive, perspective. What Microsoft often does best in the enterprise space is to play a long game in which they digest the most important trends in technologies, architectures and patterns, and work out how to bring the value of those trends to a much wider range of users by significantly reducing the cost of initial investment and ongoing TCO. Another thing is that, despite the constant criticisms, they are not afraid to invest in approaches which are 'ideosyncratic', but often well-suited to their own (large and growing) customer base. 'Oslo' represents the next stage (or two) of this endeavour. Remember that in Oslo, the focus is really on the platform as a whole, rather than the individual products that build on that platform. For Microsoft, the service bus(es) and associated technologies will serve to add value to their customers' existing platform investment - so very 'Microsoft', and so very compelling for the majority of their customers. MS is on track to win mind-share back in coming years.

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