HPE and Microsoft invest in cloud computing startup Mesosphere


Cloud computing startup Mesosphere Inc. got the support of two tech giants, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) and Microsoft. The company closed $73.5 million in a Series C funding round led by HPE, with Microsoft joining as a new strategic investor. The round brings Mesosphere’s total funding to date to nearly $126 million. The Mesosphere Datacenter Operating System (DCOS) helps enterprises build micro services-based applications, run big data systems and operate large production container environments. Lak Ananth, Managing Director at Hewlett Packard Ventures, called it “the most exciting new enterprise operating system since Linux.”

What makes Mesosphere DCOS so exciting is that it involves three of the biggest tech trends today: cloud, containerization and micro services, said Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft’s cloud and enterprise division. “Mesosphere DCOS is preferred by our enterprise customers given the maturity of the container orchestration solution, and that’s why we chose it as a key component for bringing containers to our enterprise-grade Microsoft Azure cloud platform,” he said in a news release. Microsoft’s investment in Mesosphere is a logical move considering the company uses Mesosphere DCOS in its products, said Brian Gracely, lead cloud analyst at Wikibon. It’s, therefore, in Microsoft’s best interest to help Mesosphere succeed.

HPE, however, hasn’t been involved in this space until now. This is a new area for the company, Gracely said. Its investment signals that it is “hedging their bets on future technologies,” he said. Mesosphere DCOS is the first operating system “purpose-built for datacenter-scale systems and applications,” according to the company. The open source core of the DCOS, Apache Mesos, is the platform on which Apache Spark was built. Some of the world’s largest private data centers, including Verizon, Apple, Twitter and Netflix, use the Mesosphere DCOS or the open source technologies that comprise it. It helps them build, install, manage and scale today’s technologies, including Docker, Apache Cassandra, Jenkins, Apache Kafka and Apache Spark, Mesosphere said.

The DCOS can also be used in public cloud environments. It can run on cloud instances like it does on bare metal, and it is a key component of Microsoft’s Azure Container Service. In the world of application modernization, Mesosphere DCOS plays an important role. Rather than have large applications, developers are building applications in small pieces so they can quickly enhance those pieces. Those micro services are then deployed into containers, and organizations need an operating system to coordinate all of them and monitor them—enter Mesosphere DCOS.

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