Feeds

Google's cloud dumps custom Linux, switches to Debian

Debian 7.0 wheezes in as GCEL hobbles out

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Updated Google is moving the default software for its rentable cloud servers from a custom version of Linux to Debian.

The decision to make Debian the default image type for Google Compute Engine was announced by the company on Thursday. As a consequence, Google's stripped down Linux OS GCEL (Google Compute Engine Linux) is being deprecated in favor of Debian 6.0 and 7.0

"We are continually evaluating other operating systems that we can enable with Compute Engine," Jimmy Kaplowitz, a Google site reliability engineer, wrote. "However, going forward, Debian will be the default image type for Compute Engine."

Google now recommends that all developers use Debian images rather than GCEL, which is "a Linux distribution using Debian packages found in typical minimal Ubuntu distributions," according to a Google FAQ.

By comparison, the Debian 6.0 "squeeze" and 7.0 "wheezy" distributions set as default for Google's cloud services have few differences, aside from having module loading and direct memory access disabled for security purposes.

"Google is interested in working with Debian to make the images even more standard and achieve official Debian image status," the Debian wiki says. "In the meantime, Debian has indicated that it's okay with these images being labeled as Debian instead of Debian-based."

Debian is a famously stable Linux distribution. Version 7 was released earlier this week after over two years of development. "If you're looking for a stable, rock solid Linux distro the new Debian will not disappoint," wrote our own penguin fiddler in a review of the distro.

Google's cloud also supports CentOS 6.2. At the time of writing, Google had not returned a request for information on the reasoning behind the move. ®

Update:

"We feel that customers will get a great experience having a Linux distribution that is maintained by the Debian community. Debian and derivatives thereof (such as Mint and Ubuntu) are among the most popular on the Internet, and Google itself is a heavy contributor to the Debian code base. We will also continue to offer CentOS, and are actively exploring other operating system options based on feedback from our customers," a Google spokesperson told us when we asked about the reason for the change.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
Intel, Cisco and co reveal PLANS to keep tabs on WORLD'S MACHINES
Connecting everything to everything... Er, good idea?
SDI wars: WTF is software defined infrastructure?
This time we play for ALL the marbles
'Urika': Cray unveils new 1,500-core big data crunching monster
6TB of DRAM, 38TB of SSD flash and 120TB of disk storage
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Oracle hires former SAP exec for cloudy push
'We know Larry said cloud was gibberish, and insane, and idiotic, but...'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.