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

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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