Cloud-in-a-box? Bo-ring! How about cloud-in-a-tank?

Defence outfit Thales gets Azure Stack to drop and give it twenty for military use


Microsoft’s Azure Stack cloud-in-a-box has been adapted for in-field use by the world’s militaries.

Defence contractor Thales and Microsoft have teamed to build a version of Azure Stack that’s been physically and digitally hardened.

The result is a portable Azure Stack that can operate when offline, a change from the cloud-in-a-box’s usual arrangement, as Thales assumes there may be times during operations when getting online won’t be possible. The defence outfit has also applied some of the security technologies it uses to protect sensitive information.

The two companies are pushing access to cloud services as the real value, because putting servers, storage and networking into a field-ready package isn’t a stretch. But putting that kit into a box and creating an environment that lets developers tap cloud services is a decent trick. The pair are therefore optimistic that defence industry types will take notice.

Microsoft has government-approved Azure operations that make it possible for developers to even ponder using the platform’s services.

The military market is substantial, but not so big that a Microsoft/Thales alliance will make or break Azure Stack. But it does again demonstrate that Microsoft has a very strong hybrid cloud story compared to its rivals.

In related news, Huawei this week released its Azure Stack product. The product uses Huawei's FusionServer V5 servers, CloudEngine switches and Intel Xeon Scalable processors. ®

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