Microsoft and storage appliance vendor NetApp to day announced a three year collaboration agreement:
Under the new agreement, the two companies will collaborate and deliver technology solutions that span virtualization, private cloud computing, and storage and data management, enabling customers to increase datacenter management efficiencies, reduce costs and improve business agility.
As part of the new strategic alliance agreement, NetApp and Microsoft will expand product collaboration and technical integration activities, including the following areas:
• Virtualized infrastructure solutions based on Windows Server 2008 R2, Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2, Microsoft System Center and NetApp storage systems. These solutions can provide reliable data availability and streamlined data management, and can help maximize server and storage utilization by using 50 percent less storage compared to a baseline of traditional storage.
• Storage and data management solutions for Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server and Microsoft SQL Server that improve communications and collaboration, enable faster, better-informed decision-making, and greatly accelerate software development and testing.
• Efficient and flexible cloud computing and hosted services solutions that provide integrated data protection, “always on” data access, and a flexible, cost-effective infrastructure.
In addition, NetApp and Microsoft will enable customers to experience firsthand the value of joint solutions at the Microsoft Technology Centers around the world and at industry events. Both companies will participate in engagements with channel partners and industry-leading systems integrators, offering technology solutions that are comprehensive and easy to use.
It is a non-exclusive deal so both parties will have other irons in the fire, but it is a natural match since NetApp specializes in file system based storage appliances (as opposed to raw block disk storage) and who loves their own files systems better than Microsoft? The agreement undoubtedly helps NetApp compete with the raw storage providers like EMC and presumably Microsoft gets a boost competing with VMware.