Windows Azure SQL Database Marketplace
part of the Real World Windows Azure series, we talked to Dmitry Sotnikov, director
of cloud solutions at Quest Software, about using Windows Azure to deliver the
company's software-as-a-service IT
Here's what he had to say:
MSDN: Tell us about Quest
Software and the services you offer.
Sotnikov: Quest Software is a systems
management company and Microsoft Gold Certified Partner that helps customers
improve IT efficiency for software applications, databases, server
infrastructures, and virtual environments. We've helped more than 100,000
enterprise customers worldwide, including top companies in the banking, retail,
telecommunications, pharmaceutical, and insurance industries.
MSDN: What was the biggest
challenge Quest Software faced prior to implementing Windows Azure?
Sotnikov: Our products have
traditionally been on-premises software that comes with product maintenance
costs for our customers. Because of the cost of running on-premises solutions,
we felt that it limited our ability to reach small and midsize businesses. To
overcome these challenges and offer low-cost solutions, we knew that we wanted
to adopt a software-as-a-service model.
MSDN: Can you tell us about the
solution you developed with Windows Azure to help you deliver low-cost IT
Sotnikov: We've developed a set of IT
management solutions that run in the cloud as a service: Quest OnDemand. Quest
OnDemand Recovery for Active Directory
is an online service that encrypts and securely sends to the cloud service all
the changes that customers made to their Active Directory environment since their
last backup, enabling quick recovery through a website. Quest OnDemand Log
Management collects, encrypts, and sends to the cloud service event logs from
servers that customers want to monitor. Customers can access audit trails from
the website and get search results within a few seconds regardless of how much
data is processed.
our code, except a small downloadable agent, runs in Windows Azure. Both
solutions take advantage of enhanced data-center security in Windows Azure,
SAML-based access controls that we can implement with Windows Identity
Foundation, and dynamic storage and compute scalability to give administrators more
secure off-site data storage and IT management functionality.
MSDN: What makes the Quest
OnDemand service unique?
Sotnikov: As a leader in our industry,
Quest Software is uniquely positioned to provide reliable and mature products
for managing the Windows platform. With Windows Azure, we can now provide the
additional option of a software-as-a-service model so that we can offer a truly
comprehensive set of solutions to suit any customer's needs.
MSDN: Have you offered your
service to any new customer markets since implementing Windows Azure?
Sotnikov: Definitely. Traditionally, our
customer base is made up primarily of enterprise customers. With Windows Azure,
we can offer Quest OnDemand and provide IT solutions to small and midsize
organizations. Unlike traditional on-premises products, Quest OnDemand requires
fewer staff and no hardware, and it gives customers the ability to spread out
their investment over time with a pay-as-you-go subscription model.
MSDN: What are some of the key
benefits Quest Software has seen since implementing Windows Azure?
Sotnikov: The integration of Windows
Azure with the Microsoft .NET Framework and the Microsoft Visual Studio
development system helped our developers quickly create Quest OnDemand. Plus,
we were able to reuse a significant portion of our application code from our on-premises
products, which helped speed development time. The biggest benefit is that
we're able to remove some of the cost barriers for small and midsize businesses
and offer them cost-efficient solutions. At the same time, that also helps us
to reach a bigger IT management market.
more Windows Azure customer success stories, visit: www.windowsazure.com/evidence
Quest OnDemand services at: www.quest.com/ondemand