Cloud services are beginning to run a growing number of systems around the world from city infrastructure to multiplayer gaming. Microsoft thinks that their cloud services are good enough for companies to move their core functions into the cloud using Azure. The only problem with companies moving to the cloud involves how should the company continue if there is an outage. Microsoft offers a 99.99% up time guarantee where they will pay their customers if Azure is down for more than that time.
WinBeta has covered Azure and other Microsoft cloud services and how Microsoft is trying to sell companies and individuals on the idea of moving their work to the cloud. However when Azure goes down people immediately begin pointing fingers at the cloud and how it is not good. This is a false choice however, because traditional on-premises servers and systems are not perfect and can go down too. The difference is when a company has their intranet crash, it is not news outside the company.
Microsoft recently had a big Azure outage which put a large number of their customers out of service. This could mean the end of the trust in the cloud for a few companies but all things considered one large period of down time does not mean a failure of the entire system. Learning from their mistakes and communicating to their customers that Microsoft understands what happened is important to rebuilding faith in the cloud. This is exactly what Microsoft has begun doing with the video which they have posted to Channel 9 where CTO Mark Russinovich goes over the outage and tries to rebuild trust in Azure and Microsoft’s online services. This outage was big enough that Microsoft will be issuing payments to their customers who have up time guarantee agreements with their Azure package.