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In the race for domination of cloud computing, Microsoft and IBM have found big names to partner with: Each other.

The companies said Wednesday they are now working together to make some of their put their enterprise software interoperable on each other’s cloud platforms.

No date was announced for when customers will be able to buy services, but what’s coming is this:

  • IBM middleware such as WebSphere Liberty, MQ, and DB2 will be available on Microsoft Azure.
  • Windows Server and SQL Server will be offered on IBM Cloud.
  • IBM and Microsoft are working together to deliver a Microsoft .NET runtime for IBM’s Bluemix cloud application development platform.
  • To support hybrid cloud deployments, IBM will expand support of its software running on Windows Server Hyper-V, and the companies plan to make IBM Pure Application Service available on Azure.

“Together we are creating new opportunities to drive innovation in hybrid cloud,” Robert LeBlanc, IBM’s senior vice president for software and cloud solutions, said in a statement. “This agreement reinforces IBM’s strategy in providing open cloud technology for the enterprise. Clients will now gain unprecedented access to IBM’s leading middleware and will have an even greater level of choice over the tools that they use to build and deploy their cloud environments.”

Microsoft was no less effusive. The company “is committed to helping enterprise customers realize the tremendous benefits of cloud computing across their own systems, partner clouds and Microsoft Azure,” Scott Guthrie, its executive vice president for cloud and enterprise, said in the statement “With this agreement more customers will be able to take advantage of the hyper-scale, enterprise performance and hybrid capabilities of Azure.”

Customers will be able to bring their existing software licenses to the IBM and Microsoft clouds, which will help save them some money. Microsoft will also offer IBM [NYSE: IBM] middleware software licenses, such as WebSphere Liberty, MQ and DB2, to Azure customers with pay-per-use pricing.

The companies also plan to make IBM Pure Application Service available on both Azure and IBM SoftLayer for automated deployment, configuration and license management in a hybrid cloud environment.

IBM SoftLayer currently provides and supports a wide range of Microsoft [Nasdaq: MSFT] software, including Windows Server, Hyper-V, WebMatrix, Windows Firewall, SQL Server and others.



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