Although open source has failed to disrupt key Microsoft products like Exchange, SharePoint, Office and Windows, the LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL and Perl/PHP/Python) has become standard on scale-out Web servers, Mickos notes.
"Everyone on the Web or in the cloud that matters runs on Linux," he said, adding that the biggest battles are now being fought over mobile and cloud computing, "The LAMP stack is the standard solution, and the battle is now in cloud computing, cloud infrastructures and cloud APIs," Mickos said.
Microsoft has a loyal user base and a good product in Windows Azure, Mickos said, but as an open source advocate he believes the open source model is "superior and we think it's taking over the world." With Azure, you don't get to choose which hypervisor to run servers and applications on, he noted. "You go to Azure and become a customer, but that's the only decision you can make," he said.
Mickos also discussed his Finnish background and the fact that his country produced the likes of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and projects such as IRC and SSH. The MySQL company was based in Sweden.
"It's probably a coincidence but it's not completely surprising," Mickos said. "Scandinavian countries in general are very open. There is a strong tradition of working together. I think that Finland has a little bit of a technology craze and is a little bit wilder than the others."
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