Top IT channel news for July 2009

Barb Darrow
Tales from and about the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference topped the list of most-read stories in July. But Cisco news that leaked about an internal reorganization, also fared well among readers.
Here are the top five stories for the past month:

1. Microsoft partner program

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drops Gold certification
Given the sheer number of Microsoft partners -- the company claims 640,000 worldwide -- its decision to change how its top partners can qualify and become certified was bound to draw attention.

2. VARs: Microsoft using Linux to boost Hyper-V
The LAMP stack continues to draw attention as a Windows alternative, so when Microsoft said it released Linux driver code into the GPL, VARs were interested. The consensus? The decision acknowledges Linux is here to stay, but Microsoft has found a way to use Linux to bolster its Hyper-V virtualization against VMware.

3. Cisco Strategic Partner Organization could tighten account control
News that Cisco plans a new partner organization caused consternation among some VARs who saw it as an attempt by the vendor to tighten customer ties at partner expense.

4. Microsoft channel partner program changes coming
Once again news of impending partner changes -- the company plans to drive specialization for its top-tier VARs -- drew reader attention.

5. VARs eyeing cloud computing weigh Azure vs. Amazon Web Services
Now that Microsoft's price model for Azure cloud computing services is public, VARs can weigh Azure against Amazon Web Services.

Check out the top IT channel news for June 2009.

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