In terms of internal clouds, Microsoft doesn’t appear to have a clear vision, and pundits are taking note. Whether it’s fair to call the current Hyper-V-plus-Systems-Center package #NotACloud is debatable, but what’s not up for debate is whether that solution will cut it a few years down the road — it won’t. Microsoft appears to get this, but statements like the one highlighted in the link above don’t exactly inspire confidence. The goal has to be enabling internal clouds that look, feel and scale like their public counterparts, so why Microsoft seems to be setting the internal-cloud bar at simplistic IaaS-type functionality instead of Azure-type functionality is a bit confusing. Azure isn’t even built on Hyper-V.
The new Windows Azure platform appliance combines Windows Azure and Microsoft SQL Azure with Microsoft-specified hardware, enabling on-demand IT capacity and faster delivery of new applications. Large enterprises and service provider partners deploying the appliance in their datacenters will have the benefits of the cloud services that Microsoft offers today, while maintaining physical control of location, regulatory compliance and data.