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Data Storage News: Windows Acquires StorSimple

In October 2012 it was announced that Microsoft had acquired StorSimple, a company who specialises in cloud storage. Terms of the deal were not disclosed to the public. They securely and transparently integrate the cloud with on-premise storage. They claim their storage is high performance, with live archiving and cloud based data protection/disaster recovery, which reduces cost by up to 80 percent when compared to the traditional storage methods in business.

According to Microsoft, the acquisition of StorSimple’s cloud integrated storage solution will advance their cloud OS vision and help customers efficiently embrace hybrid cloud computing. According to Michael Park, corporate vice president at Microsoft’s Server and Tools Division, “cloud storage needs to integrate with IT’s current investments”. He goes on to say that StorSimple will help enterprise users integrate cloud storage in to their business through “intelligent automation and management”.

Cloud connected data centre systems are becoming increasingly popular in enterprises, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that Microsoft would want to get their print firmly set within the cloud market. Especially when Amazon has such a presence with their Amazon S3, the acquisition of StorSimple means that Microsoft can put their Azure cloud system high on a pedestal.

Windows Azure is Microsoft’s cloud computing platform which was initially released in early 2010. Azure allows applications to be built using a variety of different programming languages, tools or frameworks and lets developers integrate their public cloud applications in to their IT environment. It offers a number of features such as virtual machines to migrate applications and infrastructure without changing code, data management, media services and of course cloud services that supports multi-tier scenarios and automated deployments.

Of the acquisition, StorSimple state in a relatively short blog that “we will expand our development and go-to-market teams with the goal of seeing cloud-integrated storage become a best practice for enterprise data centers across the globe” with the help of Microsoft. They go on to say that they will continue to try and deliver on their vision that their hybrid cloud storage will becoming a building block for all cloud integrated IT architectures.

Analysts for Stifel Nicolaus, Aaron C. Rakers and Joe Quatrochi, have said that they see Microsoft’s cloud storage moves as being increasingly aggressive. Not only is this because of the StorSimple acquisition, but also because “Microsoft is fully integrating CommVault's Simpana 9 data and information management platform within the Microsoft Cloud OS – including Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V and Windows Azure”.

Microsoft is no doubt looking to become a key player in cloud storage. For the standard consumer they offer SkyDrive, a file hosting service that lets users upload and sync their files to the cloud. It is part of their Windows Live family of products and offers 7 GB of free storage. With SkyDrive and Azure for enterprise users, Microsoft are making sure that they have something to offer for all types of users. Acquiring StorSimple means that Microsoft can advance their technology and hold on the market with speed.

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