Microsoft made its first official acquisition announcement of 2010 on October 6, when company officials said they had bought long-time Microsoft partner and application-performance-monitoring vendor AviCode.
Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed. AviCode is becoming a wholly-owned subsidiary of Microsoft, and its technology will be rolled into Microsoft's System Center family of products over time, allowing customers to monitor on-premises and cloud applications, Microsoft officials said.
Microsoft's pattern of acquisitions has been under the microscope, as of late. Microsoft has not announced any acquisitions since the end of 2009, but officials have said Microsoft has still acquired some companies without fanfare in recent months.
One of Microsoft's recent unannounced acquisitions is virtual-world vendor Vivaty. Vivaty shut down in April, with its founders saying the company ran out of money.
"Microsoft does confirm that they acquired the assets of Vivaty," but none of its employees, a Microsoft spokesperson told me via e-mail this week.
I've heard from other sources of mine that Microsoft has been looking at other gaming acquisitions. A rumor was circulating last week that Microsoft was sniffing around SecondLife vendor Linden Lab. I have no idea why Microsoft would want Linden Lab, but the Softies are definitely trying to expand their gaming presence to incorporate hardware and games that will appeal to more than just hard-core gamers.