Microsoft’s Newest President Runs His Own Home Data Center

Bob Muglia’s newest president has a data center in his home.

Mr. Muglia spends weekends and evenings tinkering on Microsoft products in a data center he built at his home in the Seattle suburbs. The air-conditioned room holds racks of powerful server computers that run both Microsoft software and competitors' products. Among other functions, the server room controls a music system that can be controlled by touch-screen panels built into the walls of his home.

WSJ continues with more background as I have below. But better is a tour of his home data center.  One of the things Bob recently did was push his exchange and sharepoint sites to Microsoft’s hosted services, and he has was able to shave his electric bill.

Bob Muglia: Shows us His Tech

More technical details are here.

Bob Muglia - Senior VP by day, IT Pro by night

Bob Muglia is the Senior Vice President of our Server and Tools division - that makes him 'kind of a big deal' around here.  A little while ago, I got to attend a meeting with Bob and one of the product teams he looks after, and he mentioned in passing some of the, let's say, 'challenges' he'd had getting certain things configured on his home network.  A VP that does his own network administration?  I was interested enough that I asked Bob if we could talk about that, and he found time in his busy schedule for us to meet. 
In addition to the 9 server infrastructure that runs Bob's house, we talk about the various roles he's had in his 20 years at Microsoft, why he's excited about Server 2008, and how his team went about creating Windows Home Server - the solution for those who would rather leave their IT Pro activities at work.

WSJ article about Microsoft’s newest president Bob Muglia.

Microsoft Promotes Server Chief

Executive's Comeback Highlights Success of Less Glamorous Business


In a comeback that highlights one of Microsoft Corp.'s fastest-growing businesses, Bob Muglia -- who seven years ago was demoted -- is entering an elite tier of executives at the software company.

Microsoft said Monday it promoted Mr. Muglia to president of the company's server and tools business, making him one of only four divisional presidents at Microsoft. The move is in part seen as an effort to raise the profile of a booming, profitable business at the company, at a time when more glamorous, money-losing units like the Internet business get more attention.

[bob muglia] Bob Muglia

During Microsoft's last fiscal year, Mr. Muglia's division -- which makes most of its money from the Windows Server operating system that runs back-office computers and SQL database software -- had $13.17 billion in revenue, about 22% of the $60.42 billion in total company revenue. The group has reported 25 consecutive quarters of double-digit revenue growth.

"Server and tools is one of the unsung success stories of Microsoft," says Bill Whyman, an analyst at investment research firm ISI Group Inc. "If it was a stand-alone software company, it would be one of the biggest software companies on the planet."

Besides being a personal turnaround story.

The promotion of Mr. Muglia, 49 years old, is part of a seven-year ascent following a decision by Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer to demote him in 2001. At the time, Mr. Muglia was heading Microsoft's Internet business and spear-heading an ambitious project to build an online service called Hailstorm. The service, which required people to entrust certain personal information to Microsoft, proved a lightening rod for criticism from privacy advocates.

And, now Steve Ballmer absolutely needs Bob Muglia

In an email to Microsoft employees on Monday, Mr. Ballmer said, "Bob has built a culture of getting things done and done right. He has championed some of our most important initiatives and helped us successfully face some of our most important competitive challenges."