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back to article Microsoft scrapes Windows Azure name off cloudy kit

Windows Azure is the latest brand name to be scratched off Microsoft’s labels. The name “Azure” and in some cases even “Windows Azure” are being dropped from components and services in the company’s cloud, according to a report here. For example, Windows Azure Compute will now be Cloud Services, Windows Azure CDN is CDN, SQL …

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"had Microsoft delivered a cloud devs could easily program for and which was genuinely different or provided something better than Amazon, then the platform would have spoken for itself."...Thats in your opinion.

I actually think MS have got a pretty good service here but the name is really confusing. MS should learn that putting the word Windows in front of something that has very little to do with Windows desktop doesn't make sense and turns people off.

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Holmes

Re-brand to hide the failures...

Too many references to the epic fails Azure has had since its introduction. Getting rid of the Azure brand may help to hide these failures from new customers...

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Ru
Meh

On the value of code names

"Cloud Services", eh? I'm totally certain that searching for such a phrase on the internet search engine of your choice will totally return entirely useful results about Microsoft's products. Having an identifier with limited ambiguity is a good thing; why is it that the MS branding folk don't seem to understand that?

Still, its a hell of a lot less irritating than 'dot net'.

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Anonymous Coward

anyone feel that MS has a few too many marketing people with nothing to do?

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Gold badge

A certain CEO that I used to know once asked:

Q: Why don't marketing people look out of the window in the mornings?

A: To give them something to do in the afternoon.

The thing is, the marketing office was next-to his office, so maybe he knew what he was talking about.

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Facepalm

How odd then...

that just below the article I am being offered a free 90 day trial of Windows Azure...

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Silver badge

"had Microsoft delivered a cloud devs could easily program for and which was genuinely different or provided something better than Amazon, then the platform would have spoken for itself"

What exactly is difficult about programming for Azure? MS have made it about as simple as you can get using Visual Studio, unlike Amazon and their impenetrable documentation.

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Agreed. MS development is as simple as you can get, thanks to MS Visio, which is probably the best thing MS has ever made.

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Thumb Down

Errr... they bought Visio

And to my mind promptly gutted it of a lot of useful add-ons.

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FAIL

Re: Errr... they bought Visio

My apologies. I meant MS Visual Studio. Unfortunately I was pretending to listen in a meeting and working in Visio at the time and proved that males are rubbish multi-taskers by typing Visio automatically.

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Anonymous Coward

Visual Studio = simple?

Simple is when you have your source code in some text files and type "make" on the command line to build your project.

Simple is not downloading gigabytes worth of "development environment" in multiple stages, waiting forever for it to install (what is it doing?!?!), watching it boot sluggishly on a high-spec machine, and then being presented with a million different little panes and buttons which make your computer look like something a Hollywood set designer would mock up to convey that the computer-nerd character was doing something inhumanly complex.

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Happy

Re: Visual Studio = simple?

Different courses for different horses.

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Silver badge

Re: Visual Studio = simple?

Frankly, I rather dislike Venomous Studio (even more so than many other IDEs, which I don't care for as a class). But I agree that developing for Azure is quite straightforward and mostly well-documented, with decent reference docs and numerous articles, samples, whitepapers, etc. Deploying from the IDE is straightforward, and scripting it is only a little additional work.

Whether it offers features that aren't available on AWS is to some extent a question of semantics - whether you consider Microsoft's approaches to addressing particular needs (eg Azure Connect, Service Bus) "features" or just quirks of Azure. And obviously while there are applications that are only available for Azure (I worked on some myself), the same is true of AWS.

Still, I don't know what Clarke's getting at in that final paragraph. But then I often find his Reg articles somewhat unsatisfying.

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Microsoft nomenclature

1. Take the de facto generally used name

2. own it

3. copyright it

4. profit

see: DOS, Windows, SQL server.

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Stop

Branding realignment? Maybe not...

The linked article states that they think it is just a billing change, not an overall branding realignment.

"The company isn't clear on whether or not they'll be retaining the Azure branding though, or if this is just a simple change to billing. It appears to be the latter, however, to simplify the way that customers are billed to avoid using the services' names multiple times in one statement."

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Anonymous Coward

Great Plan

Must.Save.Planet ... I know, we'll cut carbon emmisions by reducing the number of pixels we use in billing statements. That will save photons, reduce eye usage, and minimize disk space and networking requirements and eliminate some ink usage when printed. Every pixel helps you know.

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Windows

I think they're onto something here.

If there's one thing Microsoft has done time and time again its releasing a product which was "so so" only to improve on it later (IMO usually very well executed improvements, but I will admit to be biased here and there).

Same has applied to Azure IMO. I'm not claiming it didn't have any potential, but initially it sure had a big label stamped on it: "Expensive!". Renting a virtual database with a good storage (2Gb) and fixed bandwith would cost a multiple factor more than renting a /whole/ virtual Linux environment (which, as the reader may know, could easily host /multiple/ virtual databases). Worse: many service providers also support virtual Window servers; Windows Server 2008 - optimized for web usage (so; with IIS, MS SQL, etc)? No problem. More expensive than a Linux server, but still /way/ cheaper than an Azure solution (which only provides the database aspect).

Now, I'm sure there is more to Azure than that. For example, i'm not taking things like redundancy, backups, and all of that into account. But nonetheless it sure did seem that you'd spend a lot of money on something which could be less expensive if only it didn't have the name 'Microsoft' attached to it.

So if MS is really going for the cloud services then I think it makes sense to "start over" this way; drop the name and embed the 'engine' in a broader package. At the very least it is bound to kill any prejudice because most people will most likely eventually approach it as something "new".

And that may very well give them opportunity to approach the consumer market as well.

You got to start somewhere, and I think this could be a step in the right direction.

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Re: I think they're onto something here.

Completely disagree with you, I'm sorry.

MSFT are now a true non-innovator and inherent of all that is 'shared' cool and 'open' in its branding. The fact that the terms 'Windows....' or 'MS...' does not precede the re-branding points sharply to how Redmond's right-on techs are trying to ape the open community monikers.

T'was a time when the company aggressively defined a product as 'MS'-somethingorother, then a year to go with it. MSFT SQL server is a fine product (one of the few they have) and it's brand in the cloud WILL be lost - but the company has to live with that and get out of the 'box-marketing' mind-set.

The cloud is about services, not products and then about services that folks want to use - Azure as a SQL-aaS never really took off because of complexity and restrictive platforming - what will change this time around?

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Anonymous Coward

IT'S = IT IS

See title. It's not a difficult concept.

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Coat

They finally worked it out.

So they finally worked out that Azure is a word that many people will associate with blue skies.

Not a cloud in sight.

Mine's the raincoat with the telescopic umbrella in the pocket. Not that I'll need it with Microsoft clouds.

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emPHAsis on the Wrong syLLAble

I would suggest that the goal is to simplify and reduce confusion across the Windows Azure services. Read more on my blog...

http://ericdboyd.com/2012/05/08/windows-azure-service-name-update-emphasis-on-the-wrong-syllable/

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Stop

Re: emPHAsis on the Wrong syLLAble

"Read more on my blog"

How about . . . no.

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Headmaster

An apparent title

"...The nomenclature change has emerged in an apparent email to customers..."

An apparent email, eh? What's that –something which looks like an email, but might not be?

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Re: An apparent title

I'm having a helluva time parsing the last paragraph too, thanks to this little gem:

"Like the death of Windows Live the significance of the changes are cosmetic than meaningful"

I'm pretty sure they just left out a word here or there, but it was way too much work to figure that out.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: An apparent title

What I don't get is how so many people (say ~99%) can read sentences that don't even make sense and not pick up on it.

I am curious as to what meaning they think they have derived from the words - if they are actually aware that words are supposed to have meaning at all. To them are sentences supposed to be just a combination of random unrelated words?

Not to mention the fact that I can't understand how an intelligent person can write such drivel in the first place. You see, I have developed this amazing and revolutionary technique where my eyes move to the left so I can check that what I typed was actually what I wanted to say.

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Bronze badge

Doing quite a bit at MS headquarters...... Wonder how much of this is being done to align with Windows 8? I'd really like to hear an inside vole's recap of a meeting....

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IT Angle

Never made any sense and it's time to blur the painfully bad reliability track record...

...so maybe, eventually, sometime, at some point, in the future etc etc it will be competitive?

That'd be something.

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