back to article Microsoft takes shot at Amazon as it wraps up UK cloud data centres

Microsoft has opened the doors on UK data centre facilities for local customers with a chip at Amazon. The giant’s Azure and Office 365 services are being hosted as options at locations in London, Cardiff and Durham. Dynamics CRM Online will be available from the UK data centres in the first half of next year. Until now, UK …

  1. AMBxx Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    MOD

    How many times are they going to announce the MOD as a customer? They were one of the speakers at the MS Partner conferences earlier this year. Part of the reason MS are opening in the UK is that it's rumoured to be a condition of the MOD deal.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: MOD

      So by opening the UK DC, MoD is a now a new customer. The issue is?

      1. AMBxx Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: MOD

        That this has been announced so many times. Slow news day?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: MOD

      Yes, and, when they do all these O365 references, it is really meaningless. The vast majority of O365 users (trust me, I know) are not even using the cloud services. They are just getting a better discount from MSFT to buy the O365 Sku instead of the on premise Office Sku... and then continuing to run Office the same way they always have. I had to laugh when MSFT said they have now overtaken Google Apps (according to their slanted accounting) in cloud productivity apps. Yeah, when you just tell customer x to buy the O365 Sku and they can keep doing what they have been doing with Office on prem, you can add "cloud" users really quickly.

      1. Robert Grant

        Re: MOD

        Not sure Google business stuff is any better - a mate is at a multinational and they've just started using Hangouts instead of Skype and apparently it's terrible. Skype interfacing with real phones turns out to be important.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: MOD

          I heard someone else say that Hangouts doesn't work very well. It's strange. I use it all the time and have never had any issues... primarily on my phone. Something must be up though as Google has separated video calling (the new Duo app) from the video conferencing (Hangouts). Hangouts is going to be developed as the enterprise product whereas Duo will be more of a Facetime competitor. They should change that name if it going to be an enterprise focused product, not sure people want to "hangout" with their bankers and auditors in a corporate setting.

          I personally prefer Google Apps to MSFT, regardless of cost. I think the reason why Google is going to be successful, long term, is the cost though. They are just giving away Google Apps for Work. $5 per user per month, and that's list price, for an entire portfolio of business productivity products. A MSFT security add on product costs more than that. It will take time, but the economics are difficult to beat.

  2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Will they have a legal fire-break between themselves and the data as they have with the trustee arrangement in Germany?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I would really like to hear from someone in Germany who has that alleged arrangement - I found interesting issues with that alleged EU presence in another country..

  3. monty75

    "A firm number two" - that's one way of describing Microsoft.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Agree. Why are people buying Azure? It seems like they are just moving their mess from on prem to cloud. If you are moving to cloud, that is a chance to reinvent... and get away from legacy costs.

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        Maybe you need to learn a bit more about Azure? Virtual Machines are part of it, but there's an awful lot of other stuff too.

        Regardless of the pros and cons of Microsoft and the cloud, their Azure offering is broader than any of their competitors. Reliability and cost etc are debatable, but the breadth of their offering is great.

      2. TechicallyConfused

        Steady on big fella. You are forgetting that in order to re-invent, optimise and streamline you require skills, planning, vision, and a host of other executive buzz words. To sign an Azure PO you require a pen......

        Half the time I swear it is more cost effective to use your existing SQL licenses and move to AWS rather than Azure anyway,

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          I think that is it, from what I have seen. CIOs are being bothered to do something about this new cloud thing that everyone is talking about. AWS, Google... that's new. It's better and more cost effective, but is is a whole to-do. They can just take their Windows Servers instances and throw them on another server in Azure and call it a day. I have yet to see a situation where someone takes a look at AWS, Google Cloud Platform and Azure *with no historical ties to MSFT* where Azure wins. None of the large internet start ups run Azure.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wonder if Namesco will now move their migrated Demon email customers to an Office 365 server in the UK? I am not happy that they are using Office 365 servers that are presumably in the USA. I want my emails stored in the UK or at least the EU - as they were with Demon.

    1. MatthewSt

      Already in the EU

      From what we've been able to work out, mailboxes are automatically balanced around the Office365 network behind the scenes, so your email was probably already in Dublin or Amsterdam. With any luck there's already a plan to bring them to the UK. Microsoft would be saving themselves transit bandwidth if nothing else!

    2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Don't worry

      The NSA will keep your emails nice and safe for the next milennia just as they do now.

  5. MatthewSt

    Migration

    Here's hoping that there's an easier way to migrate services across datacentres than "do it yourself"

    1. Adam 52 Silver badge

      Re: Migration

      This is one area where Microsoft are ahead of AWS. They do support cross-region fail over for instances and databases, so it's "just" a case of configuring fail over and then deliberately failing the old region.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Migration

        Google Cloud Platform has cross region fail over and load balancing. It is slick.

  6. ad47uk

    But Office 365 is so slow,

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not so much slow, as just buggy. I am trying to use Outlook on my Android phone. Sometimes emails come in, sometimes they don't. Keeps things interesting. Gmail works well. Funny that my free Gmail account is way more reliable and performant than my expensive (I assume) Outlook account. We don't even need to go to the gold standard in email, Gmail, I used to have IBM Notes (yes, I was working at IBM) and that worked without fail on my phone. Likewise with Skype "for Business" (the artist formerly known as Lync). Sometimes it works on mobile, sometimes it doesn't... sometimes my "instant" messages come in 40 minutes after they were sent.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Scotland

    Shouldn't they be planning ahead and building one in Scotland too?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Scotland

      and Northern Ireland and Wales and Cornwall and... and .... and...

      Anywhere but where little England(ers) can use it.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Scotland

        and Northern Ireland and Wales and Cornwall and... and .... and...

        Cardiff is in Wales...

  8. The_Idiot

    And do they...

    ... have a firm commttment (yes, that's me laughing in the background) from the US Judicial system ,the US guv'mint and the US TLAs that where the data is held will make a blind bit of difference to whether the US considers any and all of it their, a la Ireland?

    Sigh. Maybe I'm just being cynical, and all will be well. Nurse! The blue pill, please!

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: And do they...

      As per my earlier post, they have set up an arrangement in Germany where a German company, Deutsche Telekom, acts as the trustee for the data https://news.microsoft.com/europe/2015/11/11/45283/

      If they put something similar in place here it should serve that purpose. Whether it will keep it out of reach of May's minions is another matter. The real solution would be to put the data centres in the countries with the strongest privacy laws irrespective of whether they're in the data subjects' or users' jurisdiction and held by a local company or trustee incorporated in the country where the data centre is located. Then all you've got to worry about is data in transit....

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