I’d been holding off on posting anything on this for a while to see if any group steps up to support it. It looks like this is simply not happening.
One shouldn’t infer anything about the Microsoft platforms w.r.t. HPC as a result of this one case. However, in light of the absorption of the HPC group into the larger server group, and other reorganizations, its hard to draw a positive conclusion about the longevity of Microsoft’s HPC efforts.
If you look at this in the larger context of Microsoft’s trajectory, of where it needs to go to adapt to a rapidly changing world, its hard to see how HPC fits into this picture. Windows is not longer the worlds dominant OS, and its cash cow (office) is under significant threat. its ability to suggest that PC makers only ship Windows OSes on all their machines isn’t helping them out as the world shifts to post-PC modes of operation. Its Bing division has been a second or third tier player to Google. And the list goes on.
What Microsoft needs to do in a bigger sense is take a long hard look at what is working and likely can work in the future, and what is legacy and should be abandoned or spun out. IT has been changing very rapidly, and while there are a few places that want to use Azure, most of the rest of the cloud world is some form of Linux.
Think of this as evolution in action.
Low revenue, low margin items (HPC) aren’t going to fare well here. Protecting turf on a rapidly declining platform is a pretty good way to turn revenues way down.
I am not sure what the future portends for them, but the loss of OpenMPI support, as they have bigger fish to fry is quite reflective of this.