Re: Ah, the wonderful future we are going toward
Microsoft obviously has the right to make any changes it wants
It does, and as long as you ensure you can match that with the right and ability to then walk away you're fine from a business perspective. The issue is that a CRM tends to combine data sets in a way that is hard to replicate outside the software that created them, so it creates a lock in (one of Microsoft's favourite methods to keep you paying).
As I said elsewhere, we're in the process of assembling a new startup and to date that has not been a single viable argument to use any Microsoft products, and especially not anything cloud based. Heck, we don't even use Office - we've been using LibreOffice for years elsewhere but I recognise we're fortunate to be in the rare position of not having to exchange Office files with others who do not use LibreOffice.
But I digress. I've looked at SugarCRM for quite some time as well as it's derivative TigerCRM, but only since UK company SuiteCRM started up has that become more interesting. I have no relationship with them, but what they do seems to make sense and has as added advantage that the CRM code is accessible, which promotes long term resilience.
Moreover, *you* make the choice where it runs. Internally on a box on the LAN, on a server inside the DMZ, on a hired VM or fully hosted - you can make that choice based on budget and migrate when applicable. Just make sure you make backups..