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OpenStack or Azure? A comparison of the two big players in cloud technology

OpenStack and Azure are two prominent players in the cloud infrastructure and services market. Both allow customers to flexibly build and manage cloud environments, but there are important differences between them.

In this article we compare the OpenStack and Azure architecture, storage solutions, costs and hardware compatibility to demonstrate which may be the better choice. The Aruba Cloud offers preconfigured OpenStack virtual servers and VMware and Hyper-V customizable virtual servers.


OpenStack is an open source software that has many advantages, and allows users to create and manage their own cloud infrastructure. OpenStack is modular, so users are free to choose from different components to customize and update without stress their cloud environment.

Azure, on the other hand, is Microsoft’s cloud-based service that offers a range of infrastructure, platforms and software as a service (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS). Azure is a closed-source system that provides fewer customization options, but provides users with a convenient and uniform experience.

Storage solutions

OpenStack’s Swift and Cinder components offer a variety of storage options, including object-based and block-based storage. The storage architecture flexible and easily scalableto adapt to customer needs.

And Azure Storage offers multiple storage options, such as Blob Storage, Azure Files, and Managed Disks. Azure storage solutions seamlessly integrate with other Microsoft cloud services, such as Azure SQL and Azure Cosmos DB.


The advantage of OpenStack is that there are no license fees or royalties, so users only have to pay for their own hardware and operating costs. In addition, OpenStack allows companies to use their own hardware, which can further reduce investment costs.

In contrast, Azure costs are calculated based on the resources and services used. Microsoft offers several subscription plans and flexible payment options, but these costs can add up quickly with long-term use. However, Azure also offers discounts and free services that can make the system attractive to smaller companies and startups.

Hardware compatibility

OpenStack’s open source nature supports most hardware platforms and devices, allowing companies to use their existing infrastructure without compromising system compatibility. This allows companies to create customized cloud infrastructures that meet their specific needs and resources.

As a product of Microsoft, Azure is primarily compatible with its own hardware and software platforms, such as Windows Server and SQL Server. Although Azure supports some non-Microsoft products, the greatest integration and compatibility is naturally achieved with their own products.


The choice between OpenStack and Azure is primarily based on individual needs and company resources. OpenStack’s open source nature and flexible and customizable architecture can be an advantage for larger enterprises and those who want to take full advantage of existing infrastructure. Cost-effectiveness and lack of patent fees also can be an attractive factor for small businesses as well. On the subject, we also recommend it OpenStack: The next step in evolution at Aruba article.

In contrast, Azure is a closed system that offers a convenient, unified user experience and a high degree of integration with the Microsoft product family.

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