11.15.08

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Do-No-Evil Saturday – Part II: SLES, SLERT, HPC, SLED, and Xandros

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Servers, SLES/SLED, Xandros at 6:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNU in the wild

SLES

Quite a few articles this week mentioned the role earned or inherited by SUSE. For starters, Teradata sorted out an arrangement with SUSE. From its latest press release:

Teradata Corporation (NYSE: TDC), the world’s largest company solely
focused on data warehousing and enterprise analytics, and Novell today
announced they will provide customers a new level of support as Linux
becomes a trusted choice for Teradata enterprise-class data warehouses.

“With this agreement, we are elevating our day-to-day working
relationship, which will shape and accelerate the adoption of Linux for
enterprise-class data warehouses,” said Scott Gnau, chief development
officer, Teradata. “Our customers are demanding the best from our Linux
systems, and we are delivering high performance systems that are very
stable, manageable and scalable. In addition to improving our customers’
experience in the near term, this close relationship means we will be able
to provide the Linux community with the benefit of our experience in high
performance enterprise systems.”

There is very little information about it that goes beyond the press release.

Teradata Corporation (NYSE: TDC), down 1% on 1 million shares, the world’s largest company solely focused on data warehousing and enterprise analytics, and Novell (NASDAQ: NOVL), up 1% on 2 million shares, today announced they will provide customers a new level of support as Linux becomes a trusted choice for Teradata enterprise-class data warehouses.

IBM’s new solution incorporates IBM’s beloved distribution as well.

The Lotus Foundations servers run on an optimized version of Novell’s SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 with an operating system kernel that’s less than 100 Mbytes, according to Barlow. The kernel is stored on a chip, so the server will continue to run even if the system’s disk crashes, he said.

There is more information about it in The Register and in Microsoft Watch.

Caleb Barlow, senior product manager for the Lotus Foundations appliance, isn’t keen on giving away a lot of the details about what comprises the guts of the machine, but he says that the box is based on an x64 architecture and that it runs a very lean implementation of Linux based on Novell’s SUSE Linux Enterprise Sever 10.

Mentioned above was also IBM’s VMware deal. Novell’s SUSE matures as a virtual appliance too.

There are a few glitches with the VMware Studio system but they are relatively minor and should be fixed in the next release since VMware is aware of them. If you need to build an appliance or always wanted to build your own distribution, this is the tool for you.
Novell also offers a tool called SUSE Studio (still in alpha) that fills the same needs as VMware’s Studio. I find that SUSE Studio is friendlier to work with and requires less of the user than VMware’s product. SUSE Studio is entirely web-based so you can create virtual appliances at a customer site, if needed. I think SUSE Studio is ready for general use but Novell is notoriously conservative with its releases of new software–one explanation for their products having a reputation of rock solid stability.

Here is another product that is confirmed to work with SUSE.

While DSView already ran on Windows 2000 Server and Windows Server 2003 editions, and release 3.7 adds support for the new Windows Server 2008 kicker. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3, 4, and 5, Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 8, 9, or 10, and Sun Microsystems’ Solaris 9 and 10 are also able to run DSView and physical systems using these operating systems can be monitored with the tool as well.

Lenovo’s relationship with Novell was mentioned quite a lot recently [1, 2, 3]. Here is another last update from Joe.

However, Lenovo hooked up with Synnex to introduce a special “60-day money back guarantee” on the ThinkServers — which run Windows Server or Novell SUSE Linux (here’s the original scoop, from The VAR Guy). The ThinkServers target small businesses with 500 or fewer employees.

SLERT

Novell’s public relations bloggers initially brought this up.

Sometimes I get asked to explain the difference between a real time operating system, like SUSE Linux Enterprise Real Time, and a general purpose operating system, like SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. Most people can understand at a higher level that a real time operating system is recommended when predictability of service is important – and that a general purpose operating system can be used for everything else. But when I then start talking about the PREEMPT_RT patch set, and prioritized threads vs. fair scheduling, inevitably I’ll start to see some eyes glaze over.

Stac released this report which contains numeric results on SLERT‘s performance.

Some of the key results of the test were:

Lowest mean latency reported to date with RMDS

* Less than 0.67 ms mean latency at up to 750,000 updates per second with SLERT/InfiniBand

Lowest standard deviation of latency reported to date with RMDS

* Less than 0.5 ms through 750,000 updates per second with SLERT/InfiniBand

SLERT reduced maximum latencies at higher rates

* SLERT/InfiniBand reduced maximum latency values at rates over 200kups by 35% compared with SLES/InfiniBand

Highest throughput reported to date in the “Producer 50/50″ fanout test for a two socket server

* 10.1 million updates per second achieved with SLERT/InfiniBand

Supercomputers

SUSE continues to maintain strong presence amongst strong machines, mainly because of IBM (the world’s top computer runs Red Hat though). Here is a large Oak Ridge deployment.

Each node runs Cray’s version of the SuSE Linux operating system, and Cray has tuned the Linux kernel so that it removes unnecessary services from the compute nodes. This means that the operating system minimizes interruptions to the application codes running on the system. The SuSE Linux operating system on the nodes combines with the system services, networking software, communications, I/O and mathematical libraries, as well as compilers, debuggers and performance tools to form the Cray Linux Environment.

SLED

Television appearance… fame at least. As a dessert for Geeko fans, SLED made it into television (CBS).

For anyone who was paying attention to this weeks 60 Minutes episode on CBS, you may have seen a clip of the HP 2133 Mini-Note PC with a SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop sticker on it!

vonskippy made a funny remark over at tuxmachines.org. He wrote:

“Exactly what type of a raving fanboy do you have to be to get excited that a “glimpse” of Linux was shown on some tv show?

“Go back to tracking “nipple shots”, it’s less creepy.”

F/OSS

IDG flooded the news with its many domains where it put this article about FOSSA.

Novell plans to publish later this month or in December the architecture document of FOSSA, its long-term strategy for the management and deployment of resources both within and outside the enterprise.

The document will be outlined to open-source developers later this year, as the company expects that participation of the open-source community will be important for creating some of the technologies for the FOSSA strategy, said Jeffrey Jaffe, executive vice president and chief technology officer of Novell, on Thursday.

FOSSA is not news [1, 2, 3, 4], but IDG disseminated this article like it covered Novell’s Second Coming.

Xandros

Nothing much here except articles about Eee PC and this press release about presence in Santiago (also in Spanish).

Xandros, the leader in making Linux and Windows work together, today announced key staff members to feature the latest BridgeWays cross-platform solution for the Microsoft System Center at the Oracle Day in Santiago de Chile, November 13, 2008. A BridgeWays Management Pack that enables system administrators to monitor and manage Oracle Database Server on Windows, Linux and UNIX will be featured at the Xandros workstation in the Neuronet Partner booth.

That’s all for now.

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