Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu has become a Microsoft partner to bring Ubuntu to Microsoft's Azur platform. Canonical joins SUSE, the long time Microsoft partner which also helped Microsoft in validating that Linux infringes upon its bogus patents.
Mark Shuttleworth is full of praise for Microsoft. He writes, "Microsoft has built an impressive new entrant to the Infrastructure-as-a-Service market, and Ubuntu is there for customers who want to run workloads on Azure that are best suited to Linux. Windows Azure was built for the enterprise market, an audience which is increasingly comfortable with Ubuntu as a workhorse for scale-out workloads; in short, it’s a good fit for both of us, and it’s been interesting to do the work to bring Ubuntu to the platform."
On the contrary Mark often crticizes Red Hat, the leading open source company. He recently said that they felt blocked by Red Hat in Gnome development. Recently when he announced Ubuntu Business Desktop Remix, he took a dig at Red Hat and said, "No secret sauce for customers only; we're not creating a RHEL."
Mark knew that the community won't be happy with this decision, he says, "I know there will be members of the free software community that will leap at the chance to berate Microsoft for its very existence, but it's not very Ubuntu to do so: let's argue our perspective, work towards our goals, be open to those who are open to us, and build great stuff. There is nothing proprietary in Ubuntu-for-Azure, and no about-turn from us on long-held values. This is us making sure our audience, and especially the enterprise audience, can benefit from the work our community and Canonical do no matter where they want to do it."
Mark concludes his blog with 'recommending' Microsoft Azure:
"Windows Azure IAAS is in beta. If you are using the cloud today, or interested in it, I highly recommend you try it out. There’s no better way to make yourself heard over there."
Update: Nicolas Barcet, Ubuntu Cloud Product Manager, Canonical had clarified, "Azure opens a IaaS environment, offered us to be there. We want to offer official Ubuntu Server images, and provide support for them, for every hardware or virtual platform that asks us to, and will continue to do so, this is just the continuation of the same strategy we've followed for the 4 past years. This deal would not have existed if Microsoft had asked us to sign any IP related contract or anything that would endanger the freedom of Ubuntu. There was no such requirement, so we handled it as we would for any other cloud provider or hardware vendor."