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August 16, 2011

Microsoft Offers Glimpse into Cloud Datacenters

Nicole Hemsoth

A recent video from Microsoft highlighted how the software giant’s datacenter strategies have changed in the era of cloud computing and provides a look inside some of its 10-football field-sized behemoths to its modular datacenter approach that is being used to power a large number of web services.

In an attempt to answer the question of “where is Microsoft’s cloud” the video takes the viewer through a short history of the company’s datacenters and provides a sense of the backup and redundancy features as well as the obligatory extended explanations of power efficiency.

While the beginning of the video is mostly a sales presentation to reassure non-technical cloud customers that Microsoft has massive layers of redundancy in place, the second half is well worth the wait as it offers some great views of the inside of a few of its cloud datacenters.

The second part of the video provides some in-depth descriptions about power and cooling, the use of modular datacenters to reduce time to deployment and costs, and how they work to reduce latency.

Videos like these go a long way toward putting the cloud in perspective. In other words, for many enterprise execs hearing all about how cloud computing can save their business and bottom line, this is a tangible sense clouds from the hardware perspective.

One could argue that other IaaS companies would be well-served by putting their clouds in context for the curious—and for the suspicious who know that “cloud” is floating around somewhere but never quite materializes as something useful.

Full story at YouTube