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Is There A Future For Microsoft Applications?

When I heard that Bob Muglia was leaving Microsoft I couldn’t help but think about how many of the companies I work with are abandoning Windows servers. Even the software company I work for (as a program manager) has the migration to Linux for our web services as the number 1 priority for 2011. We have been a 100% Microsoft shop until now.

What finally convinced us to move over to Linux was when some of our engineers prototyped our artificial intelligence data analyses engine on Linux in December and found that we could easily achieve a 10x performance result WITHOUT having to load the datasets into RAM. This means that our customers can buy commodity servers (i.e. with small amounts of RAM), and get MUCH better performance than ever.

Interestingly, the primary reason for this performance improvement is the fact that we can use open source components that are built for Java to do a lot of the grunt work which is truly excellent. On Windows we were having to build a lot of these building block components on our own since they aren’t available. The simple fact is that we just don’t have a big enough team to do a good job building all the various pieces our web service uses. In short, it’s the Linux open source ecosystem which has made such a compelling case for the switch.

Every startup I talk with has similar stories.

I suppose that Bob is just playing the fall guy for these broader market trends.

Who says life is fair?