DigitalOcean adds FreeBSD, explores cloudy Windows

Adding BSD was easy. Now to negotiate with Microsoft

Cloud operator DigitalOcean has added an option to run Free BSD in its cloud and is considering adding Windows servers.

The company glories in the position as the world's second-or-third-largest operator of web-facing servers, with Netcraft rating only Amazon Web Services as its numerical superior.

The overwhelming majority of those servers are Linux, but the company today added FreeBSD in response to user requests. Co-founder Mitch Wainer told The Reg adding the Unix variant was a “trivial implementation in terms of development time”.

Rather harder, he expects, will be adding Windows. DigitalOcean is currently “exploring” how it can obtain Windows licences, so that it can add Microsoft's operating system to its offering. A German data centre is also on the agenda, as is a continuation of its developer-cuddling practices which Wainer says makes nurturing a community a core part of the company's operations.

“We focus on enabling and educating developers,” Wainer said. “Other clouds focus on sales and lead nurturing and enterprise marketing.”

Cloud's a big and growing market, so there are niches aplenty. One suspects Digital Ocean will need Windows to grow beyond its current position, as the company's US$5/month servers are a fine way to stand up a simple website. The work of winning over a few more substantial customers lies ahead. ®

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