Controlled Ascent: Microsoft Targets Cloud Computing (Waters)

Microsoft is making a run at financial services businesses, and cloud is a huge part of their strategy.  The more I speak with them the more I realized they can’t be ignored and not all clouds are created equal:

Microsoft’s Windows HPC Server, as its cloud computing offering, may still function best on Microsoft or .Net tools, but the vendor has been figuring out how to transform this, according to Kevin McPartland, senior analyst at consultancy Tabb Group. “They have made it pretty clear that this is going to be a big focus for them,” he says. “Anytime Microsoft says that, people need to pay attention because they don’t do anything half-heartedly.”

Based on Microsoft’s consumer products, financial industry users can expect notable advances and improvement, observes McPartland. “Windows 7 is so much more stable and advanced than XP,” he says. “It’s a similar transformation. That’s where they are going. They have complex event processing (CEP); they had HPC server software and because they have such reach and such a deep set of products, it’s definitely an interesting area to keep an eye on.”

The enhanced functionality available when using all Microsoft products is a key to its cloud offering. “What they get the most flack for is that it works best when you are running with .Net or Microsoft tools,” says McPartland. “But if you are already a Microsoft-focused company then the efficiency … is apparent pretty quickly because it’s all so integrated.

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