Monday, October 27, 2008

Even Microsoft is Cautious About the Legal State of the Cloud, and More

Tucked in a backwater paragraph of this interesting interview with Microsoft corporate VP Amitabh Srivastava is an interesting note about the prioritization and pacing for rollout of Azure into the various data centers Microsoft owns worldwide:
"Also, for now, Azure services will be running in a single Microsoft data center (the Quincy, Wash. facility). Sometime next year, Microsoft will expand that to other U.S. data centers and eventually move overseas, though that brings with it its own set of geopolitical issues that Srivastava said that the company would just as soon wait to tackle."
No kidding. Let's not even get into the unique legal challenges that Microsoft faces in the EU (perhaps especially because they are proposing a Windows-only cloud offering?). Just figuring out how to lay out the technical and business policies around data storage and code execution will be a thrill for the be-all, end-all PaaS offering that is Azure.

(On a side note, perhaps it presents a unique opportunity for regulation-aware infrastructure?)

There was one positive note in this interview, however. Apparently Microsoft has non-.NET code running internally on Azure, and will offer those services sometime next year. Furthermore, services must meet a template today, but template-independent services are currently on the roadmap. Perhaps a move from PaaS to IaaS is also in store?