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Microsoft Azure vs. Amazon Web Services: Cloud Comparison

Direct side-by-side comparisons aren't always possible between two service providers like Azure and Amazon, but some of them are close enough. The table below is an attempt at making those comparisons. This list of services is far from complete.

Microsoft AzureAmazon Web Services (AWS)
Available RegionsAzure RegionsAWS Global Infrastructure
Compute ServicesVirtual Machines (VMs)Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)

Cloud Services
Azure Websites and Apps
Amazon Elastic Beanstalk

Azure Visual Studio OnlineNone
Container SupportDocker Virtual Machine Extension (how to)EC2 Container Service (Preview)
Scaling OptionsAzure Autoscale (how to)Auto Scaling
Analytics/Hadoop OptionsHDInsight (Hadoop)Elastic MapReduce (EMR)
Government ServicesAzure GovernmentAWS GovCloud
App/Desktop ServicesAzure RemoteAppAmazon WorkSpaces
Amazon AppStream
Storage OptionsAzure Storage (Blobs, Tables, Queues, Files)Amazon Simplge Storage (S3)
Block StorageAzure Blob Storage (how to)Amazon Elastic Block Storage (EBS)
Hybrid Cloud StorageStorSimpleAWS Storage Gateway
Backup OptionsAzure BackupAmazon Glacier
Storage ServicesAzure Import Export (how to)Amazon Import / Export

Azure File Storage (how to)AWS Storage Gateway

Azure Site RecoveryNone
Content Delivery Network (CDN )Azure CDNAmazon CloudFront
Database OptionsAzure SQL DatabaseAmazon Relational Database Service (RDS)
Amazon Redshift
NoSQL Database OptionsAzure DocumentDBAmazon Dynamo DB

Azure Managed Cache (Redis Cache)Amazon Elastic Cache
Data OrchestrationAzure Data FactoryAWS Data Pipeline
Networking OptionsAzure Virtual NetworkAmazon VPC

Azure ExpressRouteAWS Direct Connect

Azure Traffic ManagerAmazon Route 53
Load BalancingLoad Balancing for Azure (how to)Elastic  Load Balancing
Administration & SecurityAzure Active DirectoryAWS Directory Service
AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)
Multi-Factor Authentication
Azure Multi-Factor AuthenticationAWS Multi-Factor Authentication
Azure Operational InsightsAmazon CloudTrail

Azure Application InsightsAmazon CloudWatch

Azure Event HubsAmazon Kinesis

Azure Notification HubsAmazon Simple Notification Service (SNS)

Azure Key Vault (Preview)AWS Key Management Service
ComplianceAzure Trust CenterAWS CLoudHSM
Management Services & OptionsAzure Resource ManagerAmazon CloudFormation
API ManagementAzure API ManagementAmazon API Gateway
AutomationAzure AutomationAWS OpsWorks

Azure Batch
Azure Service Bus 
Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS)
Amazon Simple Workflow (SWF)

Visual Studio
AWS CodeDeploy

Azure SchedulerNone

Azure SearchAmazon CloudSearch
AnalyticsAzure Stream AnalyticsAmazon Kinesis
Email ServicesAzure BizTalk ServicesAmazon Simple Email Services (SES)
Media ServicesAzure Media ServicesAmazon Elastic Transcoder
Amazon Mobile Analytics
Amazon Cognitor
Other Services & IntegrationsAzure Machine Learning (Preview)Amazon Machine Learning

Azure FunctionsAWS Lambda (Preview)

Service BusAWS Config (Preview)

Try It Out

In the end, it's tough to make a significant decision like picking a cloud infrastructure vendor without actually trying them out. Amazon and Azure both offer a free tier of service, so you do just that. Keep in mind that if you are a Microsoft shop that pays for developer MSDN subscriptions, then your developers all get a small amount of Azure credit to try out Azure's services. These credits are perfect for setting up small test environments, and for trying some of these services out in a way that won't your on-premises IT people angry with lots of rogue servers on the network.

So go out and give these two clouds a try and see which suits your needs the best.