Open dialogue about standards, open source, and interoperability at Microsoft


  • Expanding Interoperability to Community Linux

    Posted by Sandy Gupta
    General Manager of Marketing, Open Solutions Group

    As I mentioned in my blog last month, I’ve been on the road quite a bit this year to meet Hosters and Service Providers around the World.

    Much of my time has been spent understanding their needs, and discussing how we can work together on mixed source Cloud solutions to help them differentiate from their competition.

    We’ve already made some appreciable gains, and during my keynote at OSBC tomorrow morning I will share the expansion of our interoperability plans to community Linux. Specifically, effective immediately, Microsoft will support Windows Server2008 R2 Hyper-V to run CentOS.  CentOS is a popular Linux distribution for Hosters, and this was the number one requirement for interoperability that we heard from that community.

    This development enables our Hosting partners to consolidate their mixed Windows + Linux infrastructure on Windows Server Hyper-V; reducing cost and complexity, while betting on an enterprise class virtualization platform. I want to thank the Microsoft Open Source Technology Center for the work they have done with the community to make this possible.

  • Your Input Needed: Exchange Server and Outlook Standards

    Posted by Michael Bowman
    Program Manager, Office Engineering

    Microsoft recognizes that enabling interoperability between products from different vendors is important, particularly with respect to email and calendaring functionality, as it helps our customers stay connected and organized across their favorite services and devices.


    Exchange Server 2013 and Microsoft Outlook 2013 support the following core and most commonly adopted email and calendaring standards:

    • IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol - RFC 3501): IMAP allows a client to access and manipulate electronic mail messages on a server. This protocol allows Exchange users to access their email across a broad range of IMAP clients and enables Outlook users to access email on IMAP servers.
    • POP3 (Post Office Protocol version 3 - RFC 1939): POP3 is a broadly adopted standard for webmail service providers. Outlook uses the POP3 protocol to retrieve messages from the server. The POP3 service for Microsoft Exchange Server is used by clients that implement the POP3 protocol to store and retrieve messages on the server.
    • iCalendar (RFC 2445, RFC 2446, RFC 2447): This common format facilitates the open exchange of calendaring and scheduling information across the Internet. iCalendar is supported by both Outlook and Exchange and enables syncing and publishing of calendar items across supported services and servers, regardless of platform.
  • Available Today: FreeBSD Support for Windows Server Hyper-V

    Posted by Anandeep Pannu
    Senior Program Manager – Open Source Technical Center

    Today, Microsoft and partners NetApp and Citrix are excited to announce the availability of FreeBSD support for Windows Server Hyper-V.  This collaboration, announced at BSDCAN 2012, will help more customers adopt virtualization and move toward cloud computing.  Microsoft is committed to supporting multiple platforms with its server virtualization solution so that more organizations can take advantage of server consolidation cost-savings and build foundations for private, public and hybrid cloud computing. 

    It was invaluable to partner with NetApp and Citrix, who both have impressive expertise in how to enable FreeBSD to run on Hyper-V with high performance.  This release includes 8,500 lines of code submitted under the BSD license, supporting FreeBSD 8.2 on Windows Server 2008 R2.  We will continue to work with the community to support other releases of FreeBSD as well.  Analysis is currently underway to assess customer demand and partner capacity to extend support to FreeBSD 9.0 on Windows Server 2012.

    The source code can be found on Github here, as well as instructions for building from source and running the drivers can be found here.  On behalf of the FreeBSD on Hyper-V team, we welcome your feedback through the mailing list to continue improving the code for future submission to the FreeBSD core. 

    Check back on the blog tomorrow when we’ll have an interview with Citrix’s Thomas Goodwin, who led his team’s development efforts.  Tom will share his thoughts on how the project came together, as well as how it will support FreeBSD and Microsoft customers and partners.

  • Openness Customer Spotlight: Caixa Econômica Federal Turns to Microsoft Solutions for Cost Savings and Improved Interoperability

    Posted by Luís Fernando Patrici
    Account Executive, Microsoft Brazil

    Established in 1861, Caixa Econômica Federal is not just a bank, it’s an institution that impacts the lives of millions in Brazil. The 100% public company has a key role in promoting urban development and social initiatives across country, giving priority to sectors such as housing and public services and contributing significantly to improve the lives of citizens, especially those of low income.

    Recently, Caixa was looking to significantly revitalize its IT solutions to support growth, accelerate decision making, and take advantage of the transformative benefits of cloud solutions and mobile integration. At the same time, they needed to ensure new technologies would work well with existing IT investments, including open source software.

    Caixa decided to implement a robust suite of Microsoft solutions, including Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, and Office, to better support its 118,000 employees and 3,000 branches. Now Caixa is realizing a broad range of efficiency improvements – from streamlined communications to enhanced mobile productivity to significant cost savings.

  • FreeBSD Support on Windows Server Hyper-V

    Posted by Anandeep Pannu
    Senior Program Manager – Open Source Technical Center

    Virtualization technology plays an increasingly critical role at all levels of IT, from the desktop to the datacenter. As more organizations use virtualization to manage mission-critical workloads, they are taking advantage of the cost-saving benefits of server consolidation and building foundations for private, public and hybrid cloud computing.  To help customers adopt virtualization and progress toward cloud computing, Microsoft is committed to supporting multiple platforms with its server virtualization solution.  Tomorrow at BSDCan 2012, Microsoft and its partners NetApp and Citrix will extend this cross-platform commitment, presenting FreeBSD support on Windows Server Hyper-V.

    The FreeBSD drivers will allow FreeBSD to run as a first-class guest on the Windows Server Hyper-V hypervisor. The drivers will be fully released early this summer, including the source code for the drivers under the BSD license, and will initially work with FreeBSD 8.2 and 8.3 on Windows Server 2008 R2.

    For Microsoft the project breaks new ground – it’s the first project supporting open source development alongside commercial partners like NetApp and Citrix.