As organizations adapt to the convenience of cloud services, competition is intensifying and vendors are offering new features at affordable prices. Two stalwarts in the enterprise-level IaaS space are Microsoft’s Azure and Amazon’s AWS.
Having started in 2006, Amazon Web Services (AWS) is coming up on its 10-year anniversary. Its prime competition is from Microsoft Azure that debuted in 2010. In those four years, according to experts, Amazon has already galloped ahead of Microsoft in many ways.
Azure and AWS – Analyzing Basics
Features of both AWS and Azure are organized into similar groups that essentially translate into similar functionalities. Both are loaded with features and powerful analytics tools that provide data stream processing in real time along with a large number of options in storage, databases, application and deployment services among others.
Depending on size, enterprises spend a sizeable amount in software licenses.
Running a virtual machine on AWS includes a license key for that particular instance. There are no discounts for any on-premise Windows Server license keys, but that key can be used to run an on-premise VM of Windows Server. A similar setup is valid in Azure, making duplication for every kind of license redundant. Competition compels both Microsoft and Amazon to offer license mobility to run instances of certain software without buying additional licenses. Understanding this treatment of licenses can prove useful in saving some valuable resources for businesses.
The Hybrid Cloud
Both AWS and Azure take serious note of the “hybrid” concept. A hybrid model puts cloud and on-premise datacenters to optimal use in tandem. Enterprises can have various reasons to want at least some part of their operations close to home. With a hybrid cloud deployment, application can remain on on-premise hardware and interface with parts that are on the cloud, as many applications need to log into other services, plug-ins, etc.
Government agencies interested in migrating part of their operations to the cloud have the option to choose between AWS’ GovCloud and Azure’s Government. Both offer an isolated region designed for sensitive data on the cloud while addressing specific regulatory and compliance requirements.
While AWS’ Govcloud is a veteran in the field, Azure Government recently finished preview after stringent testing and receiving compliance certifications.
Businesses Running On Microsoft
Businesses and enterprises are significant revenue generators for Microsoft. Therefore, it makes sense for Azure to work seamlessly with all Microsoft products. And this is where azure scores over AWS.
Azure Active Directory works as a single sign-on (SSO) option for all Microsoft applications and offers plenty of options for third-party apps, like Citrix, Box, and Salesforce. An enterprise already committed to Microsoft can realize additional savings in training and deployment.
Businesses Using Open Source Software
Azure works fine with certain Linux distributions, like SUSE and Oracle. However, a lack of support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux is an obvious limitation that keeps sending customers towards AWS by default.
The history between Microsoft and Red Hat makes a deal between the two very unlikely. For a business using Red Hat, AWS is the cloud solution of choice.