Magnificent seven

Multi-tasking Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 rolls out

Lucy Carey

First big major point RHEL update in three and a half years looks to the future with a tight grip on Docker and laser focus on modern enterprise.

First launched in 1994, Red Hat Linux forms a central pillar for
Red Hat solutions across cloud and virtualization, storage and
middleware. With today’s launch of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7
 (RHEL 7) – the first big major point release for the tech in
over three years –  it’s hoped that the operating system will
further consolidate its grip in the space, moving beyond its
current position as a commodity platform.

Red Hat Linux is responsible for handling over
50 percent of the world’s trading volume, running across 28 stock
exchanges in 24 countries, and its operating system is runs on some
of the world’s biggest clouds. According to

Red Hat
, RHEL 7 is their most “ambitious
release to date,” and one that they believe represents the “future”
of IT.

It’s a lofty statement, but Red Hat
 certainly have had their focus firmly on the razor edge of
enterprise and data centre tech in this release. To this end, RHEL
7 is geared to be a foundation for future application
architectures, whilst also  being flexible and scalable enough
to support deployments across across bare metal, virtual machines,
and cloudy infrastructure.

Headline features in this release include
enhanced application development, delivery, portability and
isolation through Linux Containers, including the much

, across physical, virtual, and cloud
deployments as well as development, test and production
environments. There have also been significant file  system
improvements, including XFS as the default file system, scaling to
500 TB.

Cross-realm trust makes secure access for
Microsoft Active Directory users across Microsoft Windows and Red
Hat Enterprise Linux domains simple, providing the flexibility for
Red Hat Enterprise Linux to co-exist within heterogeneous
datacentres. And finally, there are powerful and secure application
runtimes and development, delivery and troubleshooting tools,
integrated into the platform and container-ready.

Importantly, there’s also been an update to the
underlying Linux kernel from 2.6.32 in RHEL 6.x to 3.10  -
indicative of the overarching effort to modernize RHEL.
 Forrester analyst
explained to
that this development is
significant because it allows the Hatters to “play catch-up and a
bit of leap-frog with
bringing their release into the 3.x series kernel sequence, and in
general because it introduces a bunch of useful improvements for
their customers.”

With the 1.0  release of JAX Innovation
Awards 2014 ‘
Innovative Open Technology
’ winner Docker this
week, it’s been an important week for the Linux 7 ecosystem. Jay
Lyman, Senior Analyst for  451 Research, affirms the
importance of Linux 7 in helping to  usher  forth the
next generation of technologies, explaining “Red Hat Enterprise
Linux 7 helps to introduce newer technology, such as Linux
Containers and related Docker software, to large enterprise

With this development comes the stability and
certifications that enterprises depend upon –  a critical
factor for Lyman, given the increasing number of organizations
blending new technology and methodology, for example cloud, agile
and DevOps approaches – with existing in-house infrastructure,
processes and governance.

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