Feeds

Microsoft taps up Level 3, Equinix, AT&T for direct Azure Cloud lines

Psst, don't tell the NSA. Oh, darn it

Top three mobile application threats

Cloud computing is all well and good but it's hopeless if the network connection between the customer and the data center is useless, so Microsoft has followed in Amazon's footsteps by fixing this weakness.

Redmond's new ExpressRoute service, announced in a blog post on Thursday, will offer dedicated connections to the Windows Azure public cloud: customers' systems are installed in ExpressRoute-linked data centers, or hooked up via a wide-area network such as an MPLS VPN, for this to work.

"ExpressRoute offers private, reliable and low-latency connections between customers’ data centers and Azure. ExpressRoute is an important step in our journey to help customers maximize their existing on-premises investments and take advantage of cloud computing," beamed Microsoft.

The Azure giant announced an MPLS connectivity deal for Azure in September, but that was just with AT&T. Now Microsoft has gone a step further: the Windows king has recruited data-center operator Equinix and transit provider Level 3.

Customers can either, right now, place their systems in an Equinix data center and connect to Azure using Level 3 fibre, or use an AT&T MPLS VPN. This lets firms bypass the public internet to reach Microsoft's public cloud, and mirrors a service already offered by cloud king Amazon Web Services, namely its "Direct Connect" technology.

The ExpressRoute service is in preview mode, Microsoft said without giving a date for general availability.

Pay-as-you-go prices for the service, using Equinix and Level 3, start at $300 per month for a redundant dual-port 1Gbps link, which includes "unlimited" inbound data transfer, and 15TB per month of outbound data transfer; each gigabyte costs $0.035 thereafter.

(This compares to a monthly price of about $219 per month for an equivalent AWS Direct Connect service, with variable, but mostly lower, outbound data charges.)

Companies can skip Microsoft's outbound data charges by using a WAN provided by AT&T NetBond, but at the cost of $300 per month for a weedy 10Mbps port speed; faster connections cost more.

And these prices will double when the service exits preview mode, Microsoft indicated. Opting for a six- or 12-month plan will lower the cost. The service is initially available out of the US West and US East Azure data center hubs. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Inside the Hekaton: SQL Server 2014's database engine deconstructed
Nadella's database sqares the circle of cheap memory vs speed
BOFH: Oh DO tell us what you think. *CLICK*
$%%&amp Oh dear, we've been cut *CLICK* Well hello *CLICK* You're breaking up...
Just what could be inside Dropbox's new 'Home For Life'?
Biz apps, messaging, photos, email, more storage – sorry, did you think there would be cake?
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.