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How Google Turned Open Source Into A Key Differentiator For Its Cloud Platform

Open source software has come of its age. Today it’s impossible to think of a platform company that doesn’t have an open source strategy. Even Microsoft – a company that once compared open source to cancer – has embraced it fully. Of course, we have companies like CloudBees, Red Hat and Docker that built highly successful business models with OSS. But when it comes to cloud platform vendors, the story is slightly different.

Though cloud is built on the foundation of OSS, the top 3 vendors – AWS, Microsoft and Google – have a very different approach to it. AWS and Azure are the largest consumers of OSS. Amazon EC2, one of the most successful IaaS platforms, is built on top of Xen, the popular open source hypervisor. Amazon has turned almost every successful open source project into a commercially available managed service. From ECS to EMR to RDS to ElastiCache, Amazon integrated open source tools and technologies with AWS to drive consumption of its infrastructure.

Microsoft claims that over 30% of VMs launched on Azure are running Linux. Almost all the distributions of Linux including Red Hat, Ubuntu, CentOS, SUSE and Oracle Linux are officially supported in Azure. Azure Container Service, the Containers as a Service (CaaS) is built on open source software like Docker Swarm, Apache Mesos, and Kubernetes. Many services of Azure have deep integration with OSS.

When compared to Amazon and Microsoft, Google is different in its approach to open source. Unlike its competitors, Google is one of the largest contributors to OSS. During the last decade, it created over 2000 open source projects. Android, Angular, Chromium and Go are some of the most successful OSS projects from Google.

Read the entire article at Forbes

Janakiram MSV is an analyst, advisor, and architect. Follow him on Twitter,  Facebook and LinkedIn.

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Janakiram MSV heads the Cloud Infrastructure Services at Aditi Technologies. He was the founder and CTO of Get Cloud Ready Consulting, a niche Cloud Migration and Cloud Operations firm that recently got acquired by Aditi Technologies. In his current role, he leads a highly talented engineering team that focuses on migrating and managing applications deployed on Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Windows Azure Infrastructure Services.
Janakiram is an industry analyst with deep understanding of Cloud services. Through his speaking, writing and analysis, he helps businesses take advantage of the emerging technologies. He leverages his experience of engaging with the industry in developing informative and practical research, analysis and authoritative content to inform, influence and guide decision makers. He analyzes market trends, new products / features, announcements, industry happenings and the impact of executive transitions.
Janakiram is one of the first few Microsoft Certified Professionals on Windows Azure in India. Demystifying The Cloud, an eBook authored by Janakiram is downloaded more than 100,000 times within the first few months. He is the Chief Editor of a popular portal on Cloud called www.CloudStory.in that covers the latest trends in Cloud Computing. Janakiram is an analyst with the GigaOM Pro analyst network where he analyzes the Cloud Services landscape. He is a guest faculty at the International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H) where he teaches Big Data and Cloud Computing to students enrolled for the Masters course. As a passionate speaker, he has chaired the Cloud Computing track at premier events in India.
He has been the keynote speaker at many premier conferences, and his seminars are attended by thousands of architects, developers and IT professionals. His sessions are rated among the best in every conference he participates.
Janakiram has worked at the world-class product companies including Microsoft Corporation, Amazon Web Services and Alcatel-Lucent. Joining as the first employee of Amazon Web Services in India, he was the AWS Technology Evangelist. Prior to that, Janakiram spent 10 years at Microsoft Corporation where he was involved in selling, marketing and evangelizing the Microsoft Application Platform and Tools.