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Microsoft Launches Hadoop For Windows Server and Azure



Microsoft is launching Hadoop for Windows Server and Azure at the O’Reilly Strata Conference + Hadoop World in New York today.

“Big data should provide answers for business, not complexity for IT,” said David Campbell, technical fellow at Microsoft. “Providing Hadoop compatibility on Windows Server and Azure dramatically lowers the barriers to setup and deployment and enables customers to pull insights from any data, any size, on-premises or in the cloud.”

For financial services users, this will mean they can pull data from a Hadoop cluster into Microsoft Excel, PowerPivot for Excel and Power View — the tools of choice for the financial services industry.

The company also announced today an expanded partnership with Hortonworks, a commercial vendor of Hadoop, to give customers access to an enterprise-ready distribution of Hadoop with the newly released solutions. All the code that Microsoft has developed for connecting Windows to Hadoop will be Open Source.

Hortonworks has been working with Microsoft on this connectivity for months. I first wrote about it in June.

Although I expected Microsoft to announce it at one of its technology conferences over the summer, development apparently took longer than expected with a lot of emphasis on quality control. Even now it isn’t clear what version of this software is available. Microsoft’s announcement said it is offering “new previews of Windows Azure HDInsight Service and Microsoft HDInsight Server for Windows, the company’s Apache Hadoop-based solutions for Windows Azure and Windows Server.”


Some clients are already using it, the company added.


“Customers such as Progressive, Ascribe, CareGroup, and the University of Dundee are already using HDInsight to pull valuable insights from complex data sets in the cloud and on-premises. These new previews will be available tomorrow for download at Microsoft.com/BigData.” (Some of these links were be activated later on the announcement day, 24 October, so if they don’t work at first, try again.)

“Hortonworks is the only provider of Apache Hadoop that ensures a 100 percent open source platform,” said Rob Bearden, CEO of Hortonworks. “Our expanded partnership with Microsoft empowers customers to build and deploy on platforms that are fully compatible with Apache Hadoop.”

Microsoft will announce an expanded partnership with Hortonworks as part of its effort to provide customers with access to an enterprise-ready distribution of Hadoop that is fully compatible with Windows Server and Windows Azure.

More information about Microsoft and Hadoop can be found athttp://www.microsoft.com/bigdata.


Making text – and big data – analytics a default business solution

Ashok ShrivistavaAshok Shrivistava,
Principal Scientist Data Mining Systems & Health Management,

“……historically speaking, like for the last 100 years, people have been thinking about how to use numeric data to solve problems, and statistics was built on this – the average of data and standard deviations, and this is how people SHOULD think. But 1/3 of all business leaders make decisions without numeric data. Text is a step beyond this because a lot of the math machinery is hard to apply to text due to semantics. And there are many types of data which are easy to process by the human mind but not the machine mind. So we need improvement in semantic technologies that can help mark and tag and see the underlying meaning in large text corpa. There are large companies that do that, but from what I’ve seen, they don’t lend themselves to easy analysis. You can tag your text and get stuff out of it, but it’s still up to the human to make the connections. So for example, if we start developing techniques for the overlap, then that would be of great help. You can imagine this doing a very large analysis and automatically discovering topics and looking for trends”


10th Text Analytics Summit – West

Two-Day Text Analysis Conference | November 13th – 14th 2012 | Hotel Kabuki | San Francisco, CA