Microsoft Launches Apache Spark for Azure HDInsight

The public preview of Spark for Azure HDInsight was released 12 months ago and now Microsoft has announced its general availability as well as extending Cortana’s offering to the Xbox.

spark  Microsoft announces the general availability of Apache Spark for Azure HDInsight. Features of the new services include new capabilities to the YARN resource manager to create an open source Apache licensed REST web service, as well as integrations between Spark and Azure Data Lake Store to increase scalability, Spark and Data Lake Store to increase security, Jupyter (in Python) notebooks and Power BI to build interactive visualizations over data of any size.

“Since we announced the public preview, Spark for HDInsight has gained rapid adoption and is now 50% of all new HDInsight clusters deployed,” said Chiu. “With General Availability, we are revealing improvements we’ve made to the service to make Spark hardened for the enterprise and easy for your users. This includes improvements to the availability, scalability, and productivity of our managed Spark service.”

Alongside the Spark announcement, the Microsoft team has also ventured into the consumer AI market as Cortana will now be available on Xbox One, Xbox Live and Windows Stores. Starting with a limited Xbox Preview audience for Xbox One, the offering will be more widely released to the Xbox app (beta) on Windows 10 over the course of the summer.

Starting out with U.S., U.K., France, Italy, Germany and Spain, Cortana voice commands on Xbox One will work with both headsets and Kinect. Firstly, users will be able to find new games, see what your friends are up to, start a party and accomplish common tasks, though new features will be added over time.

“As an industry, we are on the cusp of a new frontier that pairs the power of natural human language with advanced machine intelligence,” said Nadella. “At Microsoft, we call this Conversation as a Platform, and it builds on and extends the power of the Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Windows platforms to empower developers everywhere.”

The Cortana Intelligence Suite, which was launched at the event, allows developers to build apps and bots which interact with customers in a personalized way, but also react to real-world developments in real-time. The company claims the Hadoop and Spark cloud service is now an enterprise-ready solution which is fully managed, secured, and highly available.

Over 57% Organizations Have No Hybrid Cloud Strategy, Says VMTurbo

Verizon and VMTurbo are conducting a survey series collectively that will establish a baseline for organizations and a framework that proceed to the hybrid cloud over next three years.

Hybrid  The research shows that 57% organizations don’t have any kind of multi cloud strategy. It is also revealed that 35% of the organizations don’t have a private cloud strategy while 28% organizations are lacking in public cloud strategy.

Even though the hybrid cloud is considered one of the increasing trend within the cloud industry, the research proposes that the clatter at the back of multi-cloud strategies is coming from either a fewer number of clients, or from the seller organizations themselves. Other than those who can be considered in the functional multi-cloud Owner group that only embodies 10.4% of the respondents, approximately half were using a two-cloud model, and merely over a quarter were using a three-cloud model. The multi-cloud strategy was preferred by bigger organizations in common.

“A lack of cloud strategy doesn’t mean an organization has studied and rejected the idea of the cloud; it means it has given adoption little or no thought at all,” said Charles Crouchman, CTO of VMTurbo. “As organizations make the journey from on-premise IT, to public and private clouds, and finally to multi- and hybrid clouds, it’s essential that they address this.”

He further said “Having a cloud strategy means understanding the precise costs and challenges that the cloud will introduce, knowing how to make the cloud approach work for you, and choosing technologies that will supplement cloud adoption. For instance, by automating workload allocation so that services are always provided with the best performance for the best cost.”

With no strategy, businesses will be reproving themselves to higher than estimated costs, and a cloud that never performs to its full prospective.

The survey also verified the total cost of possession is not completely understood within the businesses itself, and it reduced more in smaller organizations. Small and medium enterprises are developing to make private cloud environment estimated their budget to be in the region of $150,000 (average of all respondents), whereas the total bill for those who have already completed such projects averaged at $898,508.

The statistics support the thoughts of a number of organizations who think there should be more of a business case behind the transition to the cloud instead of just dropping CAPEX and OPEX.

Microsoft Launches SQL Server on Linux with Cloud Capabilities

After this announcement the SQL Server that is a corporate data software of Microsoft will be available on Linux like windows and customer will take its benefits both on premises and cloud.

Microsoft Linux  Microsoft, which is the world’s major software corporation, is recognized for developing business software that runs only on the Windows operating system. It has made it tough or almost impossible to purchase anything like a database from Microsoft exclusive of Windows, to run on a server. Microsoft now announced that SQL Server, which is a software for organizing corporate data, will be available on the Linux that is a competing operating system.

Microsoft EVP, Cloud and Enterprise Group, Scott Guthrie commented on the company’s official blog “SQL Server on Linux will provide customers with even more flexibility in their data solution,” he said “One with mission-critical performance, industry-leading TCO, best-in-class security, and hybrid cloud innovations – like Stretch Database which lets customers access their data on-premises and in the cloud whenever they want at low cost – all built in.

The move by Microsoft is considered by most of the people as a smart move that will strengthen the Microsoft’s status in the market. As per Gartner news, the number of Linux servers shipped amplified from 3.6 million in 2014 from 2.4 million in 2011. Microsoft at the similar time saw its shipments fall from 6.5 million to 6.2 million. The shift opens up a new wave of possible clients for Microsoft and decreased apprehension of lock-in state.

He further said “This will enable SQL Server to deliver a consistent data platform across Windows Server and Linux, as well as on-premises and cloud. We are bringing the core relational database capabilities to preview today, and are targeting availability in mid-2017.”

Main features of new SQL Server are its advanced analytics; it will use R support that enables clients to do real-time prognostic analytics, on both administrative and analytic data. It also has exclusive cloud facilities that will enable clients to organize hybrid cloud architectures that divide data workloads crosswise on-premises and cloud based systems to save costs and boost quickness.

These developments and many more are all put together into SQL Server and provide you not just a novel database but a whole platform for data organization, business analytics and intelligent apps, it can be used in a reliable way crosswise both on-premises and the cloud.