While Silicon Valley environmentalists consider Eucalyptus trees to be an invasive species, MySQL’s former CEO is betting that the company named after the trees will become old growth in the data center. Eucalyptus announced today that it has updated its cloud infrastructure platform with new features and capabilities, including support for Windows applications and VMware hypervisors.

Eucalyptus began as an effort to implement Amazon Web Services APIs in a suite of private cloud software. The resulting product gives developers a platform to deploy in their data center, and it aims to be feature-compatible with AWS.

Marten Mickos, CEO of Eucalyptus and former CEO of MySQL, said that his new company is aiming to work in parallel with Amazon rather than compete against it.

“We and Amazon are in adjacent markets,” he said. “We see them as complementary to us. Some companies are happy to be in a hosted cloud. Others are saying, ‘We love cloud, but we need to run this on premise.’ ” For the on-premise folks, Eucalyptus offers Amazon-like behavior for private clouds.

Why mimic Amazon’s cloud APIs? “Those APIs are emerging as an industry standard,” said Mickos. “I wouldn’t be surprised if everybody will support them after time. It’s a little premature, but I liken it to what IBM did in the 80’s when everybody made standard PCs. Cloud computing is a more massive business than the PC business.”

Eucalyptus Enterprise Edition 2.0 is the first to support the execution of Windows applications. It’s also the first version of the software to work with the VMware hypervisor, which Mickos said is predominant in enterprises.

He said Eucalyptus Enterprise Edition 2.0 costs US$299 per core. He said that while things are moving quickly at the company, the overall goals are still quite broad and will take time to complete.

“We are building a very mission-critical and vital part of the infrastructure stack,” said Mickos. “That is a massive undertaking. It’s a really difficult engineering problem. Building massively scalable systems is really different from just building scalable systems.

“We deal with the fundamental questions of computing: driving down latency and increasing elasticity. It’s not an overnight thing. It’s not a website where you can build it overnight and change it the next day. This is serious stuff we will take many years to build.”