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Microsoft, Hortonworks Combine to Bring Hadoop to Windows Server

Hortonworks has partnered with Microsoft to provide the first Hadoop implementation geared specifically toward Windows Server.

Called the Hortonworks Data Platform (HDP), it "enables organizations to capture, process and share data in any format and at scale," according to a Hortonworks press release.

HDP allows customers to use Hadoop on-premises or in the cloud, via Windows Azure. It's a 100 percent open-source project -- all code is made available to the Apache Software Foundation.

For Microsoft-focused developers, it should make creating Big Data apps easier. "Applications built on HDP for Windows should just work on Microsoft's HDInsight server and the Azure HDInsight service," wrote Herain Oberoi on the SQL Server Blog.  

HDP is also completely interoperable between Windows and Linux, making it the industry's first Hadoop distribution available on both platforms, according to Hortonworks.

Hadoop is becoming more important to Microsoft. HDInsight was featured at last year's Build conference, Microsoft's main developer show. And although Big Data has seen its growth mostly in the realm of Linux and Java, Redmond has been steadily increasing its presence in the market. And when one considers that Windows Server has 73 percent of the market (according to Hortonworks, quoting IDC numbers), it makes sense to open up Windows to a larger segment of the development community.

Visual Studio Magazine columnist Andrew Brust nicely summed up the benefits of HDInsight in his December 2012 article:

"With HDInsight, developers can write MapReduce code in C# instead of Java, or use a LINQ provider to manipulate MapReduce indirectly through Hive. A NuGet package provides the C# MapReduce support, and a single-node developer version of HDInsight allows local debugging of such code in Visual Studio. A command-line utility provides deployment of the assembly to the local Hadoop instance. Deployment directly from Visual Studio to remote clusters, including the Windows Azure HDInsight implementation, seems a safe bet for future releases."

The announcement continues to solidify two recent trends for Microsoft: Big Data integration and open-source collaboration. For instance, the recent revelation that Visual Studio and Team Foundation Service (TFS) will support Git source control demonstrated that Microsoft isn't just teasing when it says its committed to the open-source community.

Hortonworks Data Platform 1.2 is available here.

Posted by Keith Ward on 02/28/2013

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