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Microsoft does deal with East Coast upstart to get on-premises PaaS tech

Kiss, Marry, or Kill? Luckily for Apprenda, Microsoft picked number one

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Microsoft is trying to get into on-premise cloud clusters and hook the buyers on its own public Azure cloud by partnering with a small East Coast software company named Apprenda.

The partnership was announced on Tuesday. It will see Apprenda's platform-as-a-service get hooked into Microsoft's Azure cloud along with some of its on-premises products like Systems Center.

This also gives Redmond a piece of software to potentially rival on-premises software PaaS tech from OpenShift (Red Hat) and Cloud Foundry (Pivotal), and gives Apprenda an in to Microsoft's valuable set of customers.

Apprenda's landmark tech is a platform-as-a-service which supports Java and (probably of interest to Microsoft) .NET applications. The company also claims to be able to automatically morph single-tenant applications into multi-tenant ones, though in doing so "drastically modifies" the underlying data structure.

Now, Apprenda has partnered with Microsoft to embed itself deeply into software offered by Redmond.

"Our relationship with Microsoft goes back quite some time," explained Apprenda chief Sinclair Schuller in a chat with El Reg. "We have integrations with things like Systems Center and Hyper-V [giving an] intimate level of control. The IT operator essentially get a a view of the world through their existing Microsoft tools."

The company's tech also supports Visual Studio and Microsoft's on-premises diet-cloud software the Windows Azure Pack, Schuller confirmed.

The idea, Schuller explains, is that companies can now easily link on-premises Java or .NET environments running in its platform-as-a-service with Microsoft's Windows Azure, letting them provision new IT capacity from Redmond's own cloud from within Apprenda or Microsoft's own on-premises tools.

"Apprenda is a valued Microsoft partner. Our engineering teams have worked together directly on this effort," a Microsoft spokesperson told us via email.

We did find ourselves wondering why Microsoft would partner with a company rather than build its own technology, given recent cloud extensions to on-premises tech such as Systems Center.

"The collaboration is squarely focused on meeting customer demand for hybrid solutions that give enterprises more choice, flexibility and speed in deploying applications to the cloud," the spokesperson said. "This solution complements our platform of Windows Server Hyper-V, System Center and Azure Pack."

Besides working together on integrating their technologies, the companies will also make sure that their sales organizations work together.

There will be ""go-to market plans together and incentives in place for the field organization," Schuller told us in a later conversation. Given the increasingly competitive market for cloud services, Microsoft's philosophy for now seems to be my enemy's enemy is my commercial ally. ®

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