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Microsoft Azure Fastest in Cloud Speed – Beats Amazon, Google

“Microsoft’s Windows Azure has beaten all competitors in a year’s worth of cloud speed tests, coming out ahead of Amazon EC2, Google App Engine, Rackspace and a dozen others.

The independent tests were conducted by application performance management vendor Compuware using its own testing tool CloudSleuth which debuted last year. Anyone can get results from the past 30 days for free by going to the CloudSleuth website, but this is the first time Compuware has released results for an entire 12-month period.

Compuware uses 30 testing nodes spread around the globe to gauge performance of the cloud services once every 15 minutes. The company performed 515,000 tests overall for a year’s worth of data covering August 2010 to July 2011, which Compuware released today.

Each test requires the loading of a simulated retail shopping site consisting of two pages, one page containing 40 item descriptions and small JPEG images, and the second page containing a single, larger image of 1.75MB.

The Windows Azure data center in Chicago completed the test in an average time of 6,072 milliseconds (a little over six seconds), compared to 6.45 seconds for second-place Google App Engine. Both improved steadily throughout the year, with Azure dipping to 5.52 seconds in July and Google to 5.97 seconds.

Also scoring below 7 seconds for the whole year were the Virginia locations of OpSource and GoGrid along with BlueLock in Indiana. Rackspace in Texas posted an average time of 7.19 seconds, while Amazon EC2 in Virginia posted a nearly identical 7.20. Amazon’s California location scored 8.11 seconds on average.”

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