New Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is an interesting character. All his public appearances are remarkably well conducted, almost all of them. And noteworthy comments are pretty much a given from him.

Unlike his predecessor, Steve Ballmer, for instance.

The former Microsoft CEO thought of the open source Linux platform as a cancer. Gone are those days, though. Redmond’s new main man is quick to point out that Microsoft is working to expand support for Linux on its cloud platform, Azure.

He was speaking at a cloud event in San Francisco.

And during his keynote, Nadella stood in front of a banner where the text read “Microsoft heart Linux”, a clear indication that Microsoft no longer sees the open source world as a fierce rival — the competition remains, but open source is no more a cancer.

All said and done, this was to be expected.

Nadella’s way of conducting business is almost a polar opposite of Steve Ballmer, who said in a 2001 interview that “Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches”. That was then, this is now.

Satya Nadella talked Microsoft’s cloud strategy at yesterday’s event, and said that nearly 20% of the Azure platform is now Linux friendly. Solutions like CoreOS, Oracle Linux, Suse and Ubuntu are now fully compatible with the cloud platform, which is good news for developers.

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  • jjstccean

    The future is now – go for it SN.

  • James Bell

    I’m really loving this guy. He has a complete backup plan: If their whole OS-domination strategy fails, they’ll still come out as a powerful multi-platform software company on the same level as Adobe and IBM. It’s a win-win.