LOS ANGELES -- Microsoft last week launched its first serious effort to build IT into its cloud plans by introducing technologies that help connect existing corporate networks and cloud services to make them look like a single infrastructure.
Global Small Enterprises Make the Move to Unified Communications: Download nowThe concept began to come together at Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference. The company is attempting to show that it wants to move beyond the first wave of the cloud trend, which is defined by the availability of raw computing power supplied by Microsoft and competitors such as Amazon and Google. Microsoft's goal is to supply tools, middleware and services so users can run applications that span corporate and cloud networks, especially those built with Microsoft's Azure cloud operating system.
"Azure is looking at the second wave," says Ray Valdes, an analyst with Gartner. "That wave is what happens after raw infrastructure. When companies start moving real systems to the cloud and those systems are hybrid and they have to connect back in significant ways to legacy environments. It's a big challenge and a big opportunity for Microsoft."
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