Red Hat has announced the release of RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) 7 beta for testing purposes. This is the beta of major RHEL release which bring many new features. Red Hat has also made a very significant decision to move away from Oracle’s MySQL database to MariaDB. MariaDB is a drop-in replacement of MySQL and is created by the founder of MyQL who is not very happy with Oracle’s ownership of MySQL.
RHEL 7 is based on Fedora 19, a distribution developed by Red Hat for the community (something similar to openSUSE by SUSE). Both companies use the community distributions to develop their commercial offerings, so while enterprise customers get support for enterprise editions, the open source community gets a community-supported distro for free of cost.
RHEL will be using Linux kernel 3.10 which was selected as the long term supported release by the kernel team. This release will be maintained for the next two years giving enterprises, embedded players and many millions other to bake their cake on top of that.
Here is what’s new in RHEL 7
Now customers will be able to create and deploy applications in isolated environments using Linux Container technology, such as Docker. System resources can be partitioned to each application container, providing each application with the appropriate resources and security isolation that they require – a key capability for enterprises seeking more agility and scalability within their infrastructure.
More than just benchmark results, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 helps customers optimize system performance out-of-the-box while helping reduce performance-related IT costs. In addition, users have the option to select the appropriate performance profile for their application that helps them to achieve optimal application results.
Physical and Hosted In-place Upgrades
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 will offer an in-place upgrade feature for common server deployment types, allowing data centers to migrate existing Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5 systems to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Additionally, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 enables virtual machine migration from a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 host to a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 host without virtual machine modification or downtime.
File systems within Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 continue to be a major focus of development and innovation, with enhancements to the ext4 and btrfs file systems. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 will include XFS as the default file system, scaled to support file systems up to 500 TB. The ext4 file system adds scalability enhancements to increase the maximum standalone file system size from 16 TB to 50 TB, and gains support for block sizes of up to 1MB, considerably decreasing the time spent doing block allocation and reducing fragmentation. Btrfs, an emerging file system, will be available as a technology preview within Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 and includes integrated basic volume management, snapshot support, and checksum capability to validate full data and metadata integrity.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 enhances networking configuration and operation and adds support for some of the latest networking standards. Performance improvements are delivered for network intensive applications with the availability of 40Gb Ethernet support, improved channel bonding, TCP performance improvements and low latency socket poll support.
Storage receives significant updates within Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 with support of very large scale storage configurations, including support for enterprise storage arrays. For more price-sensitive deployments, enhancements to Red Hat Enterprise Linux’s scalable storage stack provide an alternative to expensive storage arrays. New capabilities in storage management simplify the management of heterogeneous storage environments.
For datacenters where co-existence of Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Microsoft Windows ServerTM is a requirement, interoperability capabilities have been expanded within Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Specifically, IT professionals can bridge Windows and Linux infrastructure by integrating Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 systems and SAMBA 4.1 with existing Microsoft Active Directory domains. Additionally, staff can choose to deploy Red Hat Enterprise Linux Identity Management in a parallel trust zone with Active Directory, allowing customers to leverage the investments they have already made.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 simplifies configuration and administration with uniform management tools for networking, storage, file systems, performance, identities and security. It does this by delivering a Linux management framework that also interfaces to popular system management frameworks via OpenLMI. Through OpenLMI, system administrators can use scripting and APIs to automate management across multiple systems.
The beta is available for testing and you can download it from this link.