Rivals Microsoft and Oracle Wednesday announced they’re linking their clouds to allow joint customers to migrate and run their enterprise application workloads across Microsoft Azure and Oracle Cloud.
The direct network interconnection, which allows Microsoft Azure and Oracle Cloud customers to extend their on-premises data centers to both clouds, is available starting Wednesday in Oracle’s Virginia data center region and Azure’s East US region. Plans are under way to expand to other regions, but the companies offered no time frame.
The move was seen as a bid by Microsoft — the No. 2 cloud provider — and cloud underdog Oracle to better compete against No. 1 Amazon Web Services.
“With this partnership, our joint customers can migrate their entire set of existing applications to the cloud without having to re-architect anything, preserving the large investments they have already made,” Don Johnson, executive vice president of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, said in a statement.
Microsoft and Oracle’s interoperability alliance means enterprises can connect Microsoft Azure services such as analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to Oracle Cloud services such as its Autonomous Database, and deploy cloud solutions that marry Oracle applications such as JD Edwards Enterprise One, E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft, Oracle Retail and Hyperion with Oracle, and Microsoft databases running on Azure and/or Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. It also paves the way for new matchups, such as running Oracle E-Business Suite or Oracle JD Edwards on Azure against an Oracle Autonomous Database running on Exadata infrastructure in the Oracle Cloud, the companies said.
The companies will offer joint support of the connected cloud alliance.
“With Oracle’s enterprise expertise, this alliance is a natural choice for us as we help our joint customers accelerate the migration of enterprise applications and databases to the public cloud,” Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft’s Cloud and AI division, said in a statement.
The agreement makes it easier for enterprises to have a backup cloud if they are starting with Azure or Oracle or split up workloads to give developer teams their cloud of choice, as data architects, application developers and enterprise architects may have specific preferences, according to Hyoun Park, CEO and principal analyst at Amalgam Insights.
“By having a joint offering, Oracle and Microsoft have the opportunity to remove a lot of the nitty-gritty work of service orders, service mapping, networking, data transfer, governance and business continuity work that would otherwise be necessary to manage application stacks across workloads,” Park said. “This should be an interesting opportunity for cloud channel partners to take full advantage of the compensation models for both clouds, while giving customers flexibility based on their own IT vendor interaction preferences. And the joint support team allows enterprises to get help with a group experienced in the nuances of both clouds and the technical challenges of supporting interconnected cloud services and workloads.”
The Albertsons grocery company, clothing retailer Gap and oilfield services company Halliburton have been piloting the joint offering.
“At Halliburton, we have a long history of running both Oracle and Microsoft technologies for our most critical applications,” Ken Braud, Halliburton’s senior vice president and CIO, said in a statement. “Our deep experience with these two strategic vendors has yielded consistently stable and performant application deployments. This alliance gives us the flexibility and ongoing support to continue leveraging our standard architectures, while allowing us to focus on generating business outcomes that maximize returns for our shareholders.”