Public Cloud Platforms (under review) comparison & reviews

Summary
Rank
2nd 1st 4th
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Analysis expand Marius Sandbu
Ronald van Vugt
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General expand
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  • Fully Supported
  • Limitation
  • Not Supported
  • Information Only
Pros
  • + Broad range of services
  • + Good hybrid capabilities for Microsoft based environments
  • + Cloud leader with the most extensive range of services
  • + Mature services with good compliance coverage
  • + Huge number of 3rd party integrations
  • + Good range of hybrid capabilities (including VMware partnership)
  • + Baremetal Server options with cloud characteristics (hourly consumption)
Cons
  • - Availability zone rollout still largely in preview.
  • - Evolving hybrid strategy based around VMware partnership
  • - High performance networking, but limited capabilities
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Content Creator
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Overview
Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing service delivered through a global network of Microsoft-managed data centers.
Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) is a web service that provides secure, resizable compute capacity in the cloud. It is designed to make web-scale cloud computing easier for developers. Amazon EC2 reduces the time required to obtain and boot new server instances to minutes, allowing you to quickly scale capacity, both up and down, as your computing requirements change. Amazon EC2 changes the economics of computing by allowing you to pay only for capacity that you actually use.
Bluemix delivers virtual machines running in IBM Cloud data centers backed by a global private fiber network.
Management expand
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  Interfaces  
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UI / API / CL / SDK
Webbased UI, Powershell, API Available, CLI Available for Windows/Mac/Linux, SDK Available for different platforms
Webbased UI, API Available, CLI Available for Windows/Mac/Linux, SDK Available for different platforms
Single UI : Various APIs / CLIs native to services. Differences between IAAS & PaaS environment
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Common API service keys
Azure Users can create their own API Access keys; these keys can be shared
AWS Users can create their own API Access keys; these keys can be shared
Multiple API service keys
  Monitoring  
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General Service monitoring
Every Azure Compute Instances can have basic service monitoring such as CPU, Memory and Disk utilization
Every EC2 instance includes the following service quality services with a frequency of 1 minute: StatusCheckFailed, StatusCheckFailed_Instance, StatusCheckFailed_System
Available, but inconsistent IAAS & PAAS service monitoring
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VM Service monitoring
Every Azure instance sends basic metrics to Azure Monitor. More metrics and information can be gathered using OMS
Every EC2 instance sends basic metrics to CloudWatch every five-minutes. More metrics and one-minute monitoring are available at cost.
Guest OS agent based (Nimsoft)
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Actions / Event logging
Log Analytics with OMS or using Azure Monitor
Logging for EC2 instances is possible with the service CloudWatch Logs
Limited capability (agent based)
  Admin  
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Identity & Access Management
Azure Active Directory
AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)
Centralised IAM
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Multi factor authentication support
MFA support for Admins
Supported
Only for IAAS
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Granular Access Control
Resource Groups and RBAC
Using AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) a very granular access control is possible. The default for every user and role is no access; you have to define every access control.
Configurable access control to IAAS
  Control  
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VM Billing per min / hr
Pay-as-you-go, CSP, EA, Per minute billing
Pay-as-you-go, reserved instances for one or three years, scheduled instances for one year, spot instances
Hourly / Monthly / Subscription
Compute VM expand
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  VM  
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VM micro (below 1 vCPU)
A-series
EC2 instances nano, micro, small
1vCPU minimum
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VM Small (up to 8 vCPU)
D-series
EC2 instances medium, large, xlarge,
Available : Configurable mem up to 64GB
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VM Medium (up to 16 vCPU)
L-series
EC2 instances 2xlarge
Available : Configurable mem up to 128GB
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VM Large (up to 32 vCPU)
L-series
EC2 instances 4xlarge
Available : Configurable mem up to 242GB
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VM XLarge (up to 64 vCPU 128GB RAM)
EV3-series
EC2 instances 10xlarge
Max 56 core with mem up to 242GB
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VM XXLarge (up to 128 vCPU 2TB RAM)
M-series
EC2 instance 32xlarge
Not available as VM (Baremetal option : per Month)
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GPU VM Large (up to 32 vCPU)
N-series
It is possible to add a GPU to every current generation EC2 instance
Not available as VM (Baremetal option : per Hr / Month)
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GPU VM XLarge (up to 64 vCPU 128GB RAM)
It is possible to add a GPU to every current generation EC2 instance
Not available as VM (Baremetal option : per Hr / Month)
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GPU VM XXLarge (up to 128 vCPU 2TB RAM)
It is possible to add a GPU to every current generation EC2 instance
No generally available Baremetal option
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GPU types
NVIDIA K80, M60, P100
Yes, with up to 16 NVIDIA Tesla® K80 GPUs, 192GB of total video memory, 40 thousand parallel processing cores yielding 70 teraflops of single precision floating point performance and over 23 teraflops of double precision floating point performance using P2 EC2 instances
Nvidia Tesla P100, M60, K80, Grid K2 (monthly & hourly options)
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Custom VM size
No
Standard config types for public VMs. Private host VMs can be configured
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Defined disk IOPS
Yes to a certain degree
EBS Optimized instances provided dediated storage network
Not available as local disc (available with SAN)
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SR-IOV support
Yes, Accelerated Network
Supported on some instance types
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Network speeds
Low, Moderate, High, RDMA
Low, moderate, high, 10Gbps, 20Gbps.
Depending of the instance type from 450 Mbit until 20 Gbit
1 x public / 1 x private : Can add 1 private but no ability to add additional
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Add virtual NIC
All instances in a VPC can add 1 until 14 virtual NICs, depending of the instance type (this is not possible in the EC2-Classic platform, but this platform is not recommended)
No ability to add vNIC
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Attached / detach block storage
It is possible to detach block storage from an unmounted volume on a EC2 instance and attach block storage to an EC2 instance
Limited ability with portable storage
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Virtual dedicated cloud
Every EC2 instance will be part of a VPC (Virtual Private Cloud)
Virtual network created at L2 VLAN level.
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IP reassignment
Possible with Elastic IP Addresses
Can assign portable public / private IPs
  Image  
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Manual snapshots image
Can create Amazon Machine Image (AMI) from EC2 instance
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Scheduled snapshot image
Not available as native service
Not available as native service
Not available as native service (could script through API)
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API / CLI Snapshot image
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Make image public / marketplace
Yes Azure Marketplace
AWS Marketplace is available to publish and sell application images
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VM import
You can import Windows and Linux VMs that use VMware ESX or Workstation, Microsoft Hyper-V, and Citrix Xen virtualization formats.
ISO & VHD imports supported
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VM export
you can export previously imported EC2 instances to VMware ESX, Microsoft Hyper-V or Citrix Xen formats.
VHD image export
  O/S  
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Windows
Microsoft Azure currently supports a variety of operating systems including: Ubuntu, Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, Fedora, Debian, CentOS, Gentoo Linux, Oracle Linux, and FreeBSD. 
Amazon EC2 currently supports a variety of operating systems including: Amazon Linux, Ubuntu, Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, Fedora, Debian, CentOS, Gentoo Linux, Oracle Linux, and FreeBSD. 
Windows Server 2012, 2012R2, 2016 Standard edition
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Linux
Microsoft Azure currently supports a variety of operating systems including: Ubuntu, Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, Fedora, Debian, CentOS, Gentoo Linux, Oracle Linux, and FreeBSD. 
Amazon EC2 currently supports a variety of operating systems including: Amazon Linux, Ubuntu, Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, Fedora, Debian, CentOS, Gentoo Linux, Oracle Linux, and FreeBSD.
Redhat, Ubuntu, Debian, CentOS, Cloudlinux, CoreOS
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Bring your own OS
Yes, you can bring your own Microsoft license using HUB
Yes, you can bring your own Microsoft license
Supported (at own risk)
  Control  
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Resize existing VM
Resizing of a VM which is EBS backed supported
Resize vCPU, memory, network speed
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VM Live Migration
On host failure the vm will be auto migrated to a new host (guest monitor/restart also available)
If a host fails and the EC2 instance uses EBS, it is possible to start the EC2 instance on another host manually or automatically with monitoring and scripting; if an EC2 instance is installed on instance store and de host fails, the EC2 instance is lost
Recovery processes not clearly defined. SLA for recovery defined (in hrs)
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