UPDATED 00:36 EST / SEPTEMBER 14 2016

NEWS

Microsoft to launch Azure Service Fabric on Linux this month

Microsoft has announced it will release a Linux flavor of its Service Fabric cloud service into public preview later this month.

The service was first launched in preview on Azure last March, and the company says a Linux flavor will be released at Microsoft’s Ignite conference on Sept. 26.

Service Fabric allows businesses to deploy scalable, reliable applications on public and private clouds without needing to worry about the underlying operating system. It’s capable of managing multiple instances of the same application, provides healthy and load reporting services, and enables automatic state management that replicates data transparently in order to keep all instances up to date.

Microsoft Azure CTO Mark Russinovich said in a blog post there was a need for “a consistent microservices application platform and management experience across enterprise IT infrastructure,” regardless of what operating system or programming language is used. That explains why Microsoft released an edition of SQL Server for Linux earlier this year, and why Azure Service Fabric will be landing on the open-source operating system soon.

“Most enterprises today host a mixture of Windows Server and Linux servers,” Russinovich said, inferring that by not delivering products for that platform the company would be depriving itself of opportunities.

The first Linux distribution to get Azure Service Fabric will be Ubuntu Server 16.04, an LTS (Long-Term Support) release that’s guaranteed to be supported for the next five years. Ubuntu’s developer Canonical Ltd. pitches the OS as a platform for modern container and microservices-based cloud creations, making it a good candidate for Microsoft’s initial Linux release.

Some time after the launch, Russinovich said an installer will be coming out to help companies deploy Azure Service Fabric in their on-premises data centers, or between public and private clouds, or on multiple public clouds.

Microsoft says that many of its own cloud services already run on Service Fabric, including Azure SQL, DocumentDB database managers, Cortana, Skype for Business, Power BI and many more.


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