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After OpenAI Partnership, Microsoft Joins The Linux Foundation To Dive Deeper Into Open-Source Code

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No, hell is not freezing over, but Microsoft did indeed join the Linux foundation in a bid to step up its open-source game.

Just one day after announcing a partnership with OpenAI, a nonprofit research organization backed by Elon Musk, Microsoft has more big news: the company just joined the Linux Foundation to further embrace open-source technology, although it hasn't been that open to them in the past.

The Linux Foundation helps shape the development of Linux and other software built for the open-source community, allowing everybody to use and modify software to benefit from its advantages.

Cloud-First And Mobile-First Experiences

"We want to help developers achieve more and capitalize on the industry's shift toward cloud-first and mobile-first experiences using the tools and platforms of their choice," says Scott Guthrie, EVP of Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise.

Guthrie further adds that this deeper collaboration with the open-source community will enable Microsoft to offer smart, flexible and open tools and cloud services to help developers provide innovation at a greater scale than ever before.

By joining the Linux Foundation as a Platinum member, Microsoft wants to boost innovation and collaboration in a vast ecosystem, working closely with the open-source community so that more people can take advantage of mobile and cloud experiences.

The collaboration is uncanny considering the great, long-standing rivalry between Linux and Microsoft, as the free Linux has long been seen as a threat to Microsoft's Windows.

Microsoft Changing Under Satya Nadella

However, while former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was openly against Linux, the attitude and strategy over at Microsoft has seen significant changes with Satya Nadella at the helm of the company.

Microsoft has started releasing some of its own tools under open-source terms and even announced a version of SQL Server, its database management software, coming to Linux in mid-2017.

Embracing Linux And Open Source

"Microsoft has grown and matured in its use of and contributions to open source technology," says Jim Zemlin, Executive Director of The Linux Foundation.

Zemlin further highlights how Microsoft is now supporting Linux and open source and has been actively participating in many major projects.

"Membership is an important step for Microsoft, but also for the open source community at large, which stands to benefit from the company's expanding range of contributions," adds Zemlin.

Linux Developers On Azure App Service Beta

Further sweetening the deal, Linux developers can now start working with an Azure App Service beta designed to handle the infrastructure management for cloud-based apps.

This should make it notably easier for developers working on PHP and Node.js apps running on Linux to build web and mobile apps with easy scaling and integration with other services.

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