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Dell to team up with Microsoft to sell Azure
Dell Inc. will partner with Microsoft Corp. to expand the availability of Microsoft’s cloud computing software environment, called Windows Azure.
Microsoft developed Azure as a way to run its own cloud computing services business, which sells online computing services to thousands of large and small customers that want a cloud environment designed for Microsoft software applications.
Cloud computing is viewed as a way of driving increased efficiency, flexibility and centralized control for business computing. A large cloud can comprise up to one or more data centers filled with servers, networking and storage equipment that can be quickly reconfigured and adjusted to run many software applications at once.
A private cloud is owned and run by a single company. A public cloud is a shared resource available to many customers.
Dell officials said they will sell Azure two ways: as an appliance or a kit of hardware, software and services to very large companies that have massive computing installations that run Microsoft-based applications, and as a Dell-run service for other companies that are comfortable sharing a public cloud with other customers.
While Dell will compete with Microsoft in selling Azure-based services, Kris Fitzgerald, chief technology officer of Dell Services, said Dell’s acquisition last year of Perot Systems Corp. gives the company some unique expertise in areas, such as health care, that may appeal to some kinds of customers.