In Pictures: 11 things Microsoft is actually doing right

From Office to Hyper-V to Azure, the much-maligned 'dying dinosaur' has a lot going for it as the Ballmer era winds down

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10. Azure is surprisingly slick and well integrated Amazon Web Services still dominates the IaaS market, but Azure offers great price-performance, Windows tool-chain integration, and -- not surprisingly -- better integration with Microsoft services than AWS. While it offers all the expected virtual machines, databases, and storage blocks, Azure isn't just about working with Microsoft servers -- it offers key open source options, too, including Ubuntu Server and OpenSuse. And its management interface is shockingly slick compared to AWS.

Plenty of competitors offer cloud-based computing resources, but the combination of Azure's features, Microsoft's market muscle, and improved pricing have helped Azure subscriptions jump 48 percent in six months, earning $1 billion in revenue in the past year.

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