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Microsoft investing $700 million to support cloud

It looks like Microsoft is investing $700 million for a new data center in Des Moines, Iowa, United States. This facility will help meet the growing demand for cloud computing services and Xbox Live.

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blogs.desmoinesregister.com
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Alexious1192d ago

Sorry about that, fixed.

Hatsune-Miku1192d ago

Microsoft said windows vista was amazing

nukeitall1192d ago

@Hatsune-Miku:

"Microsoft said windows vista was amazing"

... and it was! The idiotic sheeps needed a name change to Windows 7 to see the beauty.

:D

humbleopinion1192d ago

Windows 7 is practically a Vista with more relaxed UAC and a cool WinKey+P to switch between multiple screen combinations :)

3-4-51192d ago

Vista was so amazing they immediately abandoned it for Windows 7

CoLD FiRE1192d ago

@3-4-5 Vista was releases in 2006 and Windows 7 was released in 2009. That's a 3 year difference which doesn't seem like "they immediately abandoned it". Vista sucked at first, thanks to hardware manufacturers not releasing good drivers and OEMs shipping laptops with 512MB Ram and also MS for making a heavy OS.

Windows Vista was the foundation at which W7 built upon so if it wasn't for Windows Vista you wouldn't have your precious Windows 7.

CoolBeansRus1192d ago

Hopefully cloud does improve the gaming performance by a lot. If it does then this would be great for improving the size of game maps and multiplayer.

Wigriff1191d ago (Edited 1191d ago )

Anything accomplished by the cloud in real time will be bottle-necked by the end-user's bandwidth. People acting like the cloud is going to make the XBone exponentially more powerful are disillusioned.

GameSpawn1191d ago

@Cold fire

You do realize the primary reason for Vista's failure is because Microsoft forced the product out the door too early. Microsoft low-balled the true required specs to vendors and they started shipping the OS on systems that weren't truly up to the task of running Vista and should have shipped with XP.

Why did Microsoft low-ball the true specs? Because at the time they were forcing Vista out the door only $2000-3000 systems (high end laptops at the time; shift $1000 down for desktops) could run it remotely well. It's not good if you can't ship your new OS on time if it will only run on the top 10% of systems sold. Microsoft fudged the requirements of Vista so $300-600 systems (low end) would meet the new requirements and manufacturers would buy up the licenses (which they get stuck with once they have them) and start shipping them on what Microsoft has told them it will work on [supposedly].

Windows 7 is built around the same core that Vista was except that it has been optimized and streamlined to work as well (if not better) with less resources, essentially a FINALIZED version of Vista. Vista can barely run on ANY machine with 2GB of RAM, yet Windows 7 has no problems (it's a little slow, but not unbearable like Vista).

Windows 8 is just Windows 7 with Metro skinned over it. The problem with Windows 8 (currently; 8.1 allows 8 to become 7 by turning Metro off and bringing the Start Menu back) is you are FORCED to use Metro regardless of whether or not you have a touch screen to make full use of it. Metro has forced them to move so much of the OS around to accommodate the touch interface that it makes your traditional Windows 98/XP/Vista/7 desktop user want to rip their damn hair out. Microsoft wanted to "unify" the experience between Windows Phone 8, Windows 8 RT (tablets), and Windows 8 (desktops/laptops), but the point is that the touch heavy Metro interface breaks workflow too much in the desktop/laptop environment. You spend too much time going back and forth between the Desktop and Metro (a WHOLE screen changing experience).

Just imagine (if you're a Mac user) having to use launchpad in 10.7 and 10.8 as your primary menu for everything as well as the start point. Seriously, how many people even use launchpad on Mac OS X? I sure the hell don't because it takes over my ENTIRE screen (hint, hint...Metro) and it's a convoluted hunk of crap.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 1191d ago
allformats1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

I wrote this elsewhere: Microsoft couldn't get away with its anti-consumer policies by feeding us lies, now they're feeding us "cloud" lies, too.

Remember folks, "cloud" is just a glorified name for "severs". Any company that wants to invest in them can. It's not something exclusive to MS... In fact, wasn't it Sony who first spoke of the cloud for next-gen consoles at the PS Meeting in February? Yes it was... But whatever..

nukeitall1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

@allformats:

"Remember folks, "cloud" is just a glorified name for "severs"."

That is a gross simplification. Since I have a server at home, does that qualify as a cloud?

Point being, it isn't just the servers, it is the software and tools to enable fast access to services.

Depending on what these services are and how automated they are is where the grey zone of cloud is.

Also, MS cloud, Azure, is on it's way to beating Amazon cloud, so it is a lot more to it than just a bunch of servers. Speed and reliability is of utmost importance when there is dependence on latency:

""Not only did Microsoft outperform the competition [google and amazon] significantly during the raw performance tests, it was the only cloud storage platform to post zero errors during 100 million reads and writes. In those categories where Microsoft was not the top performer (uptime and scalability variance), it was a close second," Nasuni notes."

http://www.zdnet.com/micros...

Remember we are talking heavyweights like amazon and google. Who else has the muscle of these guys?

One other benefit MS has is being a cloud computing provider, means all this infrastructure isn't necessarily an addition. If resources aren't used by Xbox Live, it can free them to other Azure customers so the amount of power should far exceed what is just needed for Xbox One.

kneon1192d ago

Actually there are another 5 or 6 companies between Google and Microsoft, they still have a lot of catching up to do before they can take on the top two.

Mystogan1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

A 9 billion dollar lie?

The $700 million is just one datacenter.

Azure has dozens.

So yeah a 9 billion dollar lie.

malokevi1192d ago

"In fact, wasn't it Sony who first spoke of the cloud for next-gen consoles at the PS Meeting in February? Yes it was... But whatever.. "

Jesus, your post sounds like it was written by a jealous child, brimming with angst.

You can't seriously expect that Sony will have the upper hand in every category... particularly on Microsofts home court.

Does it matter who said what first? MS clearly has the money and the infrastructure to support Xbox Live with some serious computing power. How is it that you manage to turn that into a negative?

Instead of sounding all butthurt and depressed, why not wait to see how things play out? This may or may not become one reason to seriously consider investing in an Xbox.

3-4-51192d ago

Is this where their 300,000 servers come from ?

So how many do they have not on cloud ?

gameonbro1192d ago SpamShow
joefrost001191d ago

Actually you are
Everything sony said at there meeting even the Gaikai
With the exception of streaming old games
Everything MShad already said two years ago
It was even in there leaked document
You all suck sony balls enough dont start giving them innovations they did not do

ShwankyShpanky1191d ago (Edited 1191d ago )

"That is a gross simplification. Since I have a server at home, does that qualify as a cloud?"

I'd say, yeah... kinda. Although maybe more like one of those tiny cartoon clouds that follows someone around.

For years I would email files to myself (uploading to the company email server) so I could access them anywhere. Now I'm being told by various companies that I can "access my files from anywhere, thanks to the power of the cloud!"

Edit: From Respawn
( http://n4g.com/news/1289522... )
"Let me explain this simply: when companies talk about their cloud, all they are saying is that they have a huge amount of servers ready to run whatever you need them to run. That’s all."

So while a single server could be classified as a "cloud" is debatable, the functionality is essentially the same, with a multi-server cloud really just having the added element of scalability.

rainslacker1191d ago

MS currently has 9 data centers.

North America
North-central US - Chicago, IL
South-central US - San Antonio, TX
West US - California
East US - Virginia
Asia
East Asia - Hong Kong, China
South East Asia - Singapore
Europe
North Europe - Dublin, Ireland
West Europe - Amsterdam, Netherlands

I guess this will make 10. It has CDN nodes located in 24 countries, although I guess they could up those in the future if demand increases.

Azure, and cloud computing in general, is pretty interesting actually. It does have a lot of benefits to companies and end users for practically every computer application you could dream of, it's highly scalable, and easy to develop for.

For those interested in Azure wikipedia has a good reference for it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wik...

+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 1191d ago
dedicatedtogamers1192d ago

Microsoft keeps throwing numbers around. 500 million for Kinect advertisements. 1 billion invested in games. 400 million for NFL partnership. 700 million to support cloud.

Why not throw around screenshots, game announcements, and features?

Oh, wait. We're talking about Microsoft here...

DiRtY1192d ago

You are so 2009.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.a...

MS did a GREAT job at E3 for Games. The DRM talk ruined it, but now that this is out of the way, the games are still there and they look cool.

dedicatedtogamers1192d ago

@ DiRtY

Oh, so NOW exclusives matter all over again (even though Sony said 20 PS4 exclusives in the first year, while Microsoft said 15)?

I thought it was all about multiplats. That's what the Xbox camp has been saying since - ironic - 2009.

The goalpost aren't just moving. They've launched into the stratosphere.

Loki861192d ago

They have the multiplats as well, FFXV, KH3, MG5, pretty much all third parties are either exclusive or developing for MS as well.

DiRtY1192d ago

I don't get your point. You are the one moving goalposts.

1st comment:
"Why not throw around screenshots, game announcements, and features?"

my comment:
"Here are the games"

2nd comment:
"Alright, you never cared about exclusive games at all!"

oO

Crazy logic.

The point is that a lot of Sony fans hyped their exclusives up like they would actually be huge games (Starhawk, Twisted Metal, LBP Karting, MAG) and nobody bought those games at the end of the day. 8 of the exclusive games MS announced at E3 are actually going to sell beyond 1 million copies each.

Anyway, my point was you can't hate on MS for announcing not enough (exclusive) games for the Xbox One. They did a great job.

And excuse me for not being excited about the 20 exclusive games for the PS4 in the first year. I bet most of those will be indie games (nothing bad about it, but rarely anything special either). It is just not my cup of tea.

dedicatedtogamers1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

@ DiRtY

Excuse me for not being excited for the 15 Xbox One exclusives. I bet most of those will be Kinect minigames and late-2014 titles.

See? Two can play at that game.

My comment about the "oh, so NOW exclusives matter" was not a direct response to you, but rather a comment on the general attitude of the Xbox fanbase who has said for years "exclusives are on the decline anyway. The games I want to play are multiplat anyway" and now suddenly we're back to making comparison lists of exclusives now that...Xbox had exclusives?

Lemme guess: are we gonna bring back the Metacritic score comparisons, too? Man, it's like 2005-2008 all over again. Forgive me for being cynical, but I've seen this song-and-dance before, and it gets more annoying each time it repeats itself.

DiRtY1192d ago

"Excuse me for not being excited for the 15 Xbox One exclusives. I bet most of those will be Kinect minigames and late-2014 titles.

See? Two can play at that game."

Except that only 2 of those games are Kinect games so far... Kinect Sports 3 and Fantasia Music evolved. MS lineup is not vague at all - It is filled with big budget core games.

Skips1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

@DiRtY

You seem to be very hypocritical in one of your arguments... MAG has sold over a million, but according to you, only when Xbox exclusives sell over a million does it mean. "People bought it" LMFAO!!!!

"8 of the exclusive games MS announced at E3 are actually going to sell beyond 1 million copies each."

Awesome logic. -_-

Or are you referring to how NOBODY PLAYS it anymore??? Because I got news for you kiddo....

http://www.cinemablend.com/...

*GASP!

Twisted Metal??? LBP Karting??? Starhawk???

Sorta like how Xbox fans hyped up The Witcher 2 as being console exclusive? Oh wait .... but nobody bought it.

Or how Xbox fans hyped up Steel Battalion, saying it would be the hardcore Kinect game we've ALL been waiting for? Oh wait .... but nobody bought it.

Or how how nobody bought Forza: Horizon??? Because according to you, ONLY selling over a million means nobody cares for, or bought it right?

Or does that only count for PS exclusives?

"And excuse me for not being excited about the 20 exclusive games for the PS4 in the first year. I bet most of those will be indie games (nothing bad about it, but rarely anything special either)."

And you are wrong on this point as well... 20 of those exclusives will come from Sony's 1st party, such as Sony Santa Monica, Naughty Dog, Sucker Punch, Sony Bend... ect. etc. Studios ACTUALLY worth mentioning, that actually HAVE a decent portfolio, and not to mention TALENT.

Unlike the VAST majority of Microsoft's studios... Excuse me, but I just have a hard time getting hyped for games from no name studios, studios who've worked on nothing but shovelware and other garbage their whole careers, or other small XBLA games not worth mentioning...

malokevi1192d ago

@dedicatedtogamers

What a horribly cynical attitude you appear to have. MS showed off some fabulous games at E3. I was far more impressed with their lineup than with the PS4 lineup.

I'm not even going to pretend to understand this pissing contest. You seem so set in your ways that your not willing to recognize a good thing when you see it.

Which is fine, but there's no need to moan and complain whenever somebody speaks favorably about MS' new platform. DRM and always on have been reversed, the games have been put on display, the money is being put to work, and things seem to be falling into place.

What, pray tell, is so bad about that? For any gamer?

joefrost001191d ago

Actually they threw around way more games than sony at there conference
Lets be honest here if it wasnt for sony taking shots at MS that would have been a pretty boring conference
Cause what matters most was the games and MS beat them at that
That is a fact
Lol you said throw.around screen shots I forgot how much you sony fanboys love your non gameplay pictures
2005 movies sony showed ring a bell
But sony has a halo and there so honest where MS is the devil and they buy everything they never did anything on there own

rainslacker1191d ago

Azure is a huge service for MS. They put this out because it's for all their clients that use cloud, or want better use of it, and they had some PR stuff about how they care about Iowa and stuff. This is one of those times when you have to see MS as a whole, and not just the Xbox division. This goes for both sides of the fan boy fence, I might add.

Azure isn't entirely for Xbox. I would imagine Xbox won't even get 10% of all of Azures resources at peak times, and that's aiming high.

Azure itself is a very good cloud service apparently. From my prior research into cloud for a client it was one I looked into heavily due to it's development tools available. It is somewhat costly though for a corporate level use, which is what I needed. I imagine the cost for MS would be solely in the cost to run and maintain the servers though.

maniacmayhem1191d ago (Edited 1191d ago )

@Dedicated

Waitaminute...

you're asking MS for screenshots, game announcements and features...

Did you miss their whole E3 conference, where they showed Games, Game play, Game Demos, Game trailers and did you miss their conference before E3 where they talked about the X1 features?

I know you didn't miss that because you posted a blog about it 1 minute after it ended.

"(even though Sony said 20 PS4 exclusives in the first year, while Microsoft said 15)"

Shouldn't you be asking Sony for screenshots and game announcements of these mysterious 20 games since they didn't show anything new at their E3. And most of the game they did feature were multiplats.

Edit:
I also love how you totally tried to shift points and bring up mud from the far past in your third post. It's as if you were scrambling to get out of your insane MS rant when the spotlight was shined on you.

+ Show (8) more repliesLast reply 1191d ago
THamm1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

For everyone who wants to put a negative spin on this or for everyone claiming that the MS and X1 isn't getting the recognition it deserves, and for everyone who says that all the PS4 preorders ruined the future of gaming____well the PS4 is $100 cheaper and that is the #1 reason that the PS4 is going to out do the X1. So all this cloud stuff and othe PR crap can lay down to one Benjamin Franklin, because with the specs so close to most consumers that's all that matters. So no Sony fans didn't ruin the MS evolution revolution cloud freedom gaming takeover, MS vision ruined themselves

sAVAge_bEaST1191d ago (Edited 1191d ago )

wow, MS .shills are thick on this article, (why wouldn't they be) 12 disagrees, at time of writing, for speaking TRUTH.
It's M$ such anti-truth attitude, -smoke and mirrors, through clouds.,
This is the attitude that is hurting them the most.

Yomommabinladin1190d ago

Ps fans cant find a argument about the xbox after Ms took off DRM so the only argument is the price "its cheaper so lets buy it, take my money" Without doing research just cause its cheaper dosent mean it beats other products in every single category, xbox One Dosent just play games unlike ps4, xbox one cost more because of ton of features and Kinect turns your HDtv into a smart tv Sure beats Samsung smart tv. If your just a gamer buy the ps4 but if you Want all in one entertainment even games pearson buy the xbox one if your wealthly why not buy both

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1190d ago
FrigidDARKNESS1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

Very nice. ...keep in mind folks Microsoft and Samsung collaborated to build the worlds fastes most efficient cloud servers.

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

Why o why1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

Never knew that. Samsung have a bag of money floating around. A part of the samsung group manufacture ships yeah ships with an 's'... they also acquired rolex a while back. They have deep pockets and why the spend so much on marketing even more than apple.....madness

TheLyonKing1192d ago

700 to cloud support but it won't just be for xbone, they will share the same servers as their main portfolio of software.

The Meerkat1192d ago

You seem to put that in a negative way.
I see that as a plus point, if multiple sources can effectively use the same cloud then doesn't that bode well for cross platform gaming in the future?

TheLyonKing1192d ago

Sorry it wasn't meant to spin of negativly, cloud is the furture and its great ms are investing fairly heavily in it.

Just don't want people to think it is solely for xb1

morganfell1192d ago

It isn't a matter of negativity but of facts. It will be shared with Xbox chief among them.

Also if you dig down into the facts you will notice the building has yet to be constructed. The idea that a data center will be built from the ground up and then servers installed, up, tested and fully functional by launch will likely not happen. I doubt MS will go with a butler building and a concrete pad.

The idea of building a single massive data center is not the best thing for customers where latency is your biggest enemy. Gaikai tech utilizes dispersed server farms to handle geographic areas. Depending on the one large NSA center will severly limit applications.

Geezus1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

@morganfell microsoft has tons of data centers spread out across the world especially here in the U.S. this building project seems to be adding support for that specific area of the country (iowa) for the allocation of their cloud services in general (phones, tablets, business centers...etc). sure some might operate soley for the xbox one in that area but they will prob. most likely allocate alot of the servers being built there to strengthen their Azure coverage in that area in general not as the main base of operation for the 300000 servers they specifically allocated to the One which most likely already exist as they are an extension of their current data centers . As you said a single server farm wont work and im sure MS knows that cuz they run a pretty succesful cloud service in general and know what they are doing when it comes to data center/ servers/ cloud computing and all that good stuff. their 300000 servers are probably spread around the world to service the 45 mill + of xbox live subscribers.

Diver1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

Just having data centers isn't a qualifier. It requires they got the right servers an server structure. An virtual servers well ha ha.

Besides the point was that the data center cost 700 mil ain't built.

rainslacker1191d ago

@morgan and Geezus

There are 9 datacenters located around the world(this one will make 10). 4 in the US, 2 in Asia, and 2 in Europe. There are CDN(Content Delivery Network) nodes in 24 countries. The largest datacenter is in dublin, Ireland which houses 100K servers.

The cloud works as sort of a insular internet, which runs on top of the regular internet. It is extremely fast actually. MS Azure cloud is also "dispersed" and can run applications from any datacenter it see's fit to offload tasks if necessary.

Seriously N4G mods. Can't we make the wikipedia page for Azure a sticky on the front page so people will stop assuming that cloud is everywhere and people can read an article about the basics of how it works?

morganfell1190d ago

And most of those are virtual servers. Which is where people keep missing the point. Cloud cloud cloud. One big desperate PR attempt to make up for the lack of raw onboard power.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1190d ago
green1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

Off course they will share the servers with other Microsoft services but it is good to know that XBOX Live will be the main benefactor

"The data centre will support a number of Microsoft's cloud services, but Xbox Live will be chief among them. "
http://www.gamesindustry.bi...

Mustang300C20121192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

Yeah okay man. This is Azure 2010.

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

Swiggins1192d ago

If Microsoft can SOMEHOW pull this whole cloud business off then it's going to be one of the next big things in the industry.

However, when presented with all of the elements I still don't see how it's going to work...can somebody put this in perspective for me, I'm not much of a technology guy.

Skynetone1192d ago (Edited 1192d ago )

its so you can play games online

ms and google believe, in the future everything will be in the cloud, your programs your os your pictures/videos etc etc so if you connect to any pc in the world youll have access to all your stuff, will people want all there stuff on the internet is anyone's guess

this is ms where talking about, they have zero interest in gaming, I suspect all this cloud talk has got to do with windows 9 and other features they have in mind, of course it will work for xbox live aswell but I don't thing its there primary reason in fact I thinks its pretty far down there list, ms are not investing billions of dollars so people can game online

ms record last gen has been pretty bad, for such a big company, sony had more games with dedicated servers, in fact most first party games had them

NeoRatt1192d ago

MS has had the cloud business for several years now. MS Azure its known as allows you to host thinks like e-mail, web portals, databases, software applications, and the MS Windows Server OS in the cloud. MS adds new cloud accounts for development at a rate of 5,000 - 7,000 per week. MS also has shifted a lot of focus to Office 365 as well, which is MS Office in the cloud. Finally, MS has SkyDrive which is their version of drop box.

This is a well established business that has picked up steam and is making them good money.

Xbox Live is a small extension to this business. Meaning they already have the systems in place to do this, all they are doing is adding another service on the list.

One final thing. Apparently MS can add 8,000 servers to this infrastructure with 24 hours notice. They have a standard trailer config and arrangements with hardware vendors that allows them to simply order and receive delivery quickly.