Microsoft Partners With DT on German Cloud

Mitch Wagner
9/21/2016

Microsoft on Wednesday announced it's opening its first cloud data centers in Germany, in partnership with Deutsche Telekom, to comply with local data sovereignty laws.

Microsoft's partner is T-Systems International, an independent German company and subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT). T-Systems acts as a "data trustee" for Microsoft Cloud services, providing additional controls for customer data, which can only be accessed with permission of customers or T-Systems, according to a blog post by Takeshi Numoto, corporate vice president for Microsoft Cloud + Enterprise.

The two new data centers and German service broaden Microsoft's existing European cloud offerings, and will be available to customers operating in Germany, the European Union and European Free Trade Association, Numoto says.

In addition to the German European presence, Microsoft claims to be the first foreign company to provide onshore public cloud services in China, through 21Vianet. Microsoft says its German offering is a first for Europe.

The German cloud service initially supports Azure, with previews later this year for Office 365 and Dynamics 365, and general availability for Office 365 in the first quarter and Dynamics 365 in the first half of 2017.

Data sovereignty laws -- such as the regulations Microsoft is complying with in Germany -- require data owned by a particular nation's businesses and individuals to physically reside within that nation's borders. They're designed to prevent foreign law enforcement from legally snooping on that data, and enable local law enforcement to require disclosure.

The German data centers are located in Magdeburg and Frankfurt, according to a Microsoft Azure blog post by Tom Keane, general manager.


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SAP HANA is certified to run in production on Azure, along with Azure IoT Suite, and industrial Internet applications (a.k.a. Industry 4.0). (See Triggering an Industrie 4.0 Revolution.)

"With the introduction of new regions in Germany, Microsoft has now announced 34 Azure regions around the world with 30 generally available today -- more than any other major cloud provider," Microsoft says in a post on its News Centre Europe site.

Microsoft arch-rival Amazon Web Services Inc. opened its German data center in Frankfurt in 2014.

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— Mitch Wagner, Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor, Light Reading Enterprise Cloud

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