VMware on Azure – A Cloud Odd Couple

Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure. Both platforms are capable and offer robust services to businesses for all of their cloud hosting needs. Both are large businesses that constantly compete for market share. Both companies are constantly releasing new features and services. Sometimes, they do so in direct response to each other. This can take away a competitive advantage.
Microsoft recently announced new services that will help you run your VMware infrastructure on Azure. This was in response to AWS’s similar service. However, there was a collaboration between Microsoft and VMware. It’s almost like Ford and Chevy creating a truck together or a Marvel/DC crossover. What’s the Big M’s real plan?

Azure Migrate
Azure Migrate is the core of Microsoft’s announcement. It runs in your vSphere environment. It analyzes your VMs, and provides recommendations for migrating them to Azure. Most VMs will require a lift-and shift. Essentially, the VM is replicated byte by byte into the cloud and reborn in Azure VMs. Azure Migrate will recommend that you migrate your database server to Azure’s serverless service. This is much cheaper than running the entire VM.
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Start training. Azure Migrate will recommend the right sizing of cloud resources in order to optimize your costs. Microsoft will show you how to spend less on it, in case you didn’t know.
The end result? There are no capital expenditures for servers and storage, and no additional VMware licensing fees. You only pay for the compute or storage you use and enjoy all the scalability of Azure.
This is a win-win situation for Microsoft. Microsoft is a clear winner. They are already paying you licensing costs. They also become your data center. This means that they will get all of your infrastructure budget, which was previously allocated to hardware OEMs. It’s also a win for admins, as you are a budget-cutting champion.
Azure Migrate isn’t the end of Microsoft’s exciting news.

VMware on Azure Bare Metal
We have previously discussed VMware on AWS here and its potential for hybrid deployments, cloud migrations, and other uses. It also retains the flexibility and power of vSphere.
Microsoft is now responding with its own hosted VMware solution. They also announced the “preview of VMware virtualization for Azure”, a bare-metal solution that runs all the VMware stack on Azure hardware.
This is a completely bizarre situation. Microsoft runs their direct competitor’s software in their own cloud. The truth is revealed if you dig deeper. This is not a replacement for Azure-hosted VMs or on-prem vSphere. It’s just a temporary solution to get your servers into Azure while you plan your long-term cloud strategy. You might have a deadline, a renewal, or compliance issue. Sign up for the service and vMotion your servers on up.
The end result? The end result? It’s a great strategy to win customers who are enmeshed in VMware and want to try something new.
This is yet another sign of the paradigm shift Microsoft is making. Microsoft has always made its money licensing on-prem software such as OSes, Office or LOB apps. They see the potential and are embracing cloud services.
Then things got weird.

Scandal Breaks Out
The future of the data centre is in dispute. VMware announced their own announcement just days after Microsoft’s. They weren’t happy. They began with a slam, saying “Microsoft recognizing the leadership position VMware… as an superior and necessary solution to customers over Hyper-V environments or native Azure Stack environments” Epic burn.
They continued with b