It has been nearly a year and a half since Microsoft and Red Hat announced that Red Hat Enterprise Linux would be available on Microsoft's Azure, and to say the least, the results have been astounding. That may not come as a huge shock to a number of people, however, the data results have been worthy of noting its success. The collaboration between these two companies might have caught a few off guard, since we all probably remember the “Linux is a cancer” days. But, it appears these two behemoths have let bygones be bygones, and the consumer is the real winner as a result.

While still small in comparison to Amazon's Web Services, the numbers we have seen for companies searching for individuals with experience on Microsoft Azure have risen dramatically. When the collaboration was initially launched, there were 273 job listings looking for Azure exposure. With our latest batch of results coming this month, July 2017, that number has jumped to 705. Thus, an increase of over 150% since April 2016. It is clear that companies have migrated to this combination in large numbers, thereby solidifying its success.

While Amazon Web Services had first mover advantage in the cloud space, one can not deny the success that Azure has had since joining the cloud fray back in 2010. And, it is clear that Linux is the main player in this field. While AWS has been available on Linux since day one, perhaps Microsoft came to the realization that in order to compete, it had to make Azure available on Linux as well. By showing flexibility in this realm, going against its historical choices, Microsoft is benefiting from this decision. In today's technical marketplace consumers value choice, and if a company offers that opportunity, the numbers bear out the success that can be had.