IBM and Microsoft have forged an agreement to work together in the cloud. Microsoft will offer IBM middleware on Azure and IBM will offer Windows Server and SQL Server on IBM Cloud. This will make the cloud a more attractive option for more companies and drive adoption. With more flexibility in the cloud, companies can run their business IT how they prefer regardless of who develops the software they want to run in the cloud.
The cloud is the next frontier of IT. More and more companies are shifting their servers to a fully cloud or hybrid cloud solution. This can create some issues when it comes to maintaining the current software a company uses. On premises IT staff can run the applications they want and have a mix of vendors and hardware solutions. When the move to the cloud is assessed, IT staff may decide there are too many restrictions on what software can be hosted on which cloud service.
Microsoft and IBM are looking to remove some of those restrictions by allowing each other's software on both clouds. Specifically IBM middleware such as WebSphere Liberty, MQ, DB2, and IBM Pure Application Service will run on Azure. Microsoft is enabling Windows Server, SQL Server, and Windows Server Hyper-V to run on IBM Cloud. IBM and Microsoft are working together to deliver a .Net runtime for the IBM Bluemix cloud development platform.
This announcement is good for companies everywhere who run a variety of software. It is also good for the cloud overall. Companies should take this as a sign that big cloud providers are willing to work together to deliver a compelling cloud solution to their shared customers. The cloud no longer requires companies to be locked into a single company's proprietary software. The future is bright and diverse for the cloud.