Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.1 with Improved Virtualization

Nov 09, 2007

Linux distributor Red Hat has updated its enterprise platform Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and released version 5.1.

According to the vendor, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.1 offers improved performance for integrated virtualization and enhanced scalabity besides various bugfixes. Red Hat’s main focus is on paravirtualization on Xen with hardware support for modern processors. The developers promise up to 25 percent better performance in comparison with other virtualization technologes. On top of this, live migration is improved to give administrators the ability to shift applications between servers without downtime.

The vendor also promises improved virtualization performance for Windows host systems such as Windows XP, Windows Server 2000, 2003 and Windows 2008 Beta, although paravirtualization is not supported by these systems.

Speaking at a press conference, Red Hat Vice President EMEA, Werner Knoblich quoted figures that underline the importance of virtualization: "Since the introduction of RHEL 5 with integrated virtualization, around 18,000 servers have been virtualized on Red Hat", said Knoblich, and continued: "Our target for the first year is 50,000 units." Knoblich quoted close cooperation with hardware vendors Intel and HP as one reason for the success of paravirtualization. Another result of this cooperation is that RHEL is now certified on around 1500 server models. Additionally, users can choose from more than 3400 RHEL certified applications. “Further proof that Linux today is mainstream”, says Knoblich.

RHEL 5 was launched at Cebit 2007. Customers with software subscriptions can download version 5.1 as of now via the Red Hat network, management and automation platform. The enterprise version is released every two years, and RHEL 6 is not expected until 2009.

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