Hortonworks Retrofits Hadoop for Excel Lovers with Windows Distro: Azure Next

Hortonworks new logoHortonworks just released a Windows version of HDP, its open-source Hadoop distribution. The beta is downloadable from the company’s site.

The Hortonworks Data Platform for Windows is the product of a strategic alliance between the big data startup and Microsoft that dates back October 2011.

“Today’s news builds on our long-term collaboration with Microsoft and is the next critical step in our strategy of broadening the reach of 100-percent open source Apache Hadoop across the enterprise by enabling millions of Windows users around the globe to benefit from this next-generation data platform,” said Shaun Connolly, Hortonworks’ vice president of corporate strategy. “Hortonworks Data Platform for Windows extends the Hadoop ecosystem across the Windows operating system, providing organizations with an enterprise-grade, production-tested platform for big data deployments.”

The addition of support for Windows will make it easier for Hortonworks customers to integrate data from SQL Server and Hadoop. It also means that IT can then take that data and easily dump it all into Excel, converting it into spreadsheets that traditional business users can understand and leverage in their work.

The Hortonworks Data Platform Windows will become generally available later this quarter. An Azure version is also due to release at some point, but a timeframe has not yet been disclosed.

This latest announcement comes just days after an equally notable milestone for Hortonworks. On Wednesday the startup made two separate submissions to the  Apache Software Foundation: Tez, a MapReduce performance optimization utility, and the Hadoop Gateway authentication solution.

Hortonworks also unveiled the Stinger Initiative, a project that aims to enhance the Hive’s SQL capabilities. The goal of this initiative, which involves both Hortonworks engineers and independent members of the Apache community, is to make the platform more suitable for production environments.