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CERN Ditching Microsoft as Licensing Costs Shoot up

The multi-year project will begin with a pilot mail service for the IT department and volunteers this summer

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FILE - Microsoft Corp. signage is seen outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Washington, July 3, 2014. VOA

CERN — the famous scientific lab where the web was born — is ditching Microsoft as the latter has revoked CERN’s academic status, thus, increasing the licensing costs by over tenfold.

A prime example is that CERN has enjoyed special conditions for the use of Microsoft products for the last 20 years, by virtue of its status as an “academic institution”. Although CERN has negotiated a ramp-up profile over ten years to give the necessary time to adapt, such costs are not sustainable, read a recent CERN blog post.

The multi-year project will begin with a pilot mail service for the IT department and volunteers this summer.

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella delivers the keynote address at Build, the company’s annual conference for software developers. VOA

If that goes well, CERN will migrate all of its staff to the new mail service. It also plans to move Skype for Business clients and analogue phones to a softphone pilot.

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Many other products and services are being worked on: evaluations of alternative solutions for various software packages used for IT core services, prototypes and pilots will emerge along the course of the next few years, the blog post added. (IANS)

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Amazon Asks Judge to Block Microsoft from Pentagon Project

The US government in October awarded the much-anticipated $10 billion Cloud contract for Pentagon to Microsoft

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Security guards stand at the reception desk of the Amazon India office in Bengaluru, India, Aug. 14, 2015. VOA

Amazon Web Services (AWS), the retail giant’s Cloud arm, has asked a US judge to force a stay of work on Microsoft’s $10 billion Cloud contract until the court can rule on Amazon’s protest over the Pentagon awarding JEDI to Microsoft.

Amazon had sought ‘preliminary injunction’ from the court to temporarily block Microsoft from starting work on the billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) project.

In a statement shared with Fast Company, an AWS spokesperson said that it is common practice to stay contract performance while a protest is pending.

“It’s important that the numerous evaluation errors and blatant political interference that impacted the JEDI award decision be reviewed. AWS is absolutely committed to supporting the DoD’s modernisation efforts and to an expeditious legal process that resolves this matter as quickly as possible,’ the spokesperson added.

Amazon filed a motion asking a federal judge to block Microsoft from working on any substantive tasks for the JEDI project while the court considers the matter. The motion makes good on Amazon’s previous pledge to try to pause work on the contract while the legal challenge is underway.

FILE - Microsoft Corp. signage is shown outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash.
FILE – Microsoft Corp. signage is shown outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash. VOA

Amazon last year filed a suit with the US Court of Federal Claims contesting the decision.

“AWS is absolutely committed to supporting the Department of Defense (DoD’s) modernisation efforts and to an expeditious legal process that resolves this matter as quickly as possible,” the AWS spokesperson said.

Also Read: Tencent Offers to Acquire Funcom Games for $148mn: Tech Report

Microsoft is set to start its work on JEDI Cloud contract from February 11.

The US government in October awarded the much-anticipated $10 billion Cloud contract for Pentagon to Microsoft.

In its complaint against the government decision, Amazon alleged Trump abused his position to put “improper pressure” on decision-makers for personal gains and show his hatred towards Bezos who owns The Washington Post. (IANS)