The Microsoft-Salesforce Cloud Computing Dispute

At the center of Microsoft's lawsuit against Salesforce is the emerging move toward cloud computing.


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When Microsoft turns into an alley thug, you can be pretty sure the company has something other than its server OSes on its mind. Recently, the company got itself into a right old barney with Salesforce.com, launching a lawsuit over nine CRM-related patents on which it claims Salesforce.com is infringing. The two organizations, let's not forget, are competitors in the cloud-based CRM space.

The lawsuit rather got Salesforce.com boss Marc Benioff's goat, prompting him to fire back:

"The reality is that these patent trolls are unfortunately just part of doing business and technology these days. They're basically the alley thugs. Every thriving economy has alley thugs and we do too."

Salesforce (NYSE: CRM) is a feisty, or should we say pugnacious, little company. In June, it kicked back at Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) where it hurts, claiming the company has violated five Salesforce.com patents with its Windows Server AppFabric for installing and provisioning apps on Azure, Windows Live Services including Hotmail and SkyDrive storage, .NET, Windows 7, Server 2008 R2, and SharePoint products and technologies.

If Microsoft and Salesforce.com were two naughty schoolboys then the teacher would come over, bang their heads together, and ask them what all this is about. "The cloud, sir," would be the correct answer.

Read the rest at ServerWatch.

Tags: cloud computing, Microsoft, CRM, Salesforce, Virtual Cloud Management

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