NEWS

openSUSE Leap 15.1 Released

The openSUSE community has announced the release of openSUSE Leap 15.1, the stable release of the Linux-based distribution. OpenSUSE Leap 15.1 is targeted at IT professionals.

The release updates the graphics stack for the distribution, bringing significant improvements. Graphics hardware support released with the 4.19 Linux kernel was backported for Leap 15.1, which uses the 4.12 Linux kernel and supports additional graphics drivers for Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), along with improved support for the AMD Vega chipset. The release also adds a few popular WiFi drivers for more modern wireless chipsets.

OpenSUSE Leap 15.1 also comes with improvements to the YaST administration tool, including a better 4k display (HiDPI) experience. HiDPI displays are now auto-detected, and the UI is auto-scaled, giving the installer a beautifully crisp interface.

Some of the improvements to YaST have made for better management of services. Firewalld can be managed in text mode. There is a new user interface to manage Firewalld, including AutoYaST support/advancements. System administrators will have better control with Salt formulas in the yast2-configuration-management module, and management of SSH keys per user will make sys admins tasks much more pleasant.

OpenSUSE Leap 15.1 is available for free download: https://software.opensuse.org/distributions/leap

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Available

At the Red Hat Summit 2019 the company announced the availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8.

According to Red Hat (https://www.redhat.com/en/about/press-releases/red-hat-enterprise-linux-8-every-enterprise-every-cloud-every-workload), RHEL 8 is redesigned for the hybrid cloud era and built to support the workloads and operations that vary from enterprise data centers to multiple public clouds.

One of the goals of modern tech companies is to simplify tech consumption. RHEL 8 abstracts many of the deep complexities of granular sys admin tasks behind the RHEL web console. The console provides an intuitive, consistent graphical interface for managing and monitoring RHEL system, from the health of virtual machines to overall system performance. To further improve ease of use, RHEL supports in-place upgrades, providing a more streamlined, efficient, and timely path for users to convert RHEL 7 instances to RHEL 8 systems.

RHEL 8 also includes RHEL System Roles, which automate many of the more complex tasks around managing and configuring Linux in production. Powered by Red Hat Ansible Automation, System Roles are preconfigured Ansible modules that enable ready-made automated workflows for handling common, complex sys admin tasks. This automation makes it easier for new systems administrators to adopt Linux protocols and helps to eliminate human error.

Google Brings Linux to Chromebook

Linux-based Chromebooks are not capable of natively running Linux apps and utilities. Last year, Google launched project Crostini to allow Linux apps – primarily command-line tools and utilities – to run natively on Chrome OS using containerization.

According to some media reports, at the Google I/O summit this year, Google announced that "all Chromebooks launched in 2019 will be Linux-ready right out of the box." It means that all new Chromebooks will have Crostini enabled by default.

"Crostini is the umbrella term for making Linux application support easy to use and integrating well with Chrome OS. It largely focuses on getting you a terminal with a container and easy access to install whatever developer-focused tools you might want. It's the default first-party experience," said the Project Crostini page.

Both Google and Microsoft are trying to lure developers towards their platforms, and they see a benefit in providing Linux command-line utilities that many developers/sys admins need to test, build, and run their cloud-native applications.

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