A couple of weeks ago, Mellanox’s ConnectX®-3/ConnectX-3 Pro and ConnectX-4/ConnectX-4 Lx NICs became the first to pass Microsoft Server Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) Premium certification for Microsoft Windows at all Ethernet standard speeds, means, 10, 25, 40, 50 & 100 GbE. This was the latest significant milestone and crucial in the journey that Microsoft and Mellanox started more than six years ago to enable our networking hardware to deliver the most efficient solutions for the new Windows Server and Azure Stack-based deployments. These ConnectX NICs have already been certified by the world’s leading server OEMs (HPE, Dell, Lenovo, and others¹), and when deployed with the most advanced switches and cables, like Mellanox’s Spectrum switch and LinkX copper and optical cables, they have been proven to provide the most efficient Azure Stack solutions. This latest milestone is a good cause to look back to analyze all of the progress that has led to this point. For brevity’s sake, let’s start in 2012.