Feeds

Send in the clones: Oracle, CentOS catch up to Red Hat Linux 6.5

Lookalike Linux distros take on latest RHEL

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Now that Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6.5 has shipped, here come the derivatives, with both Oracle and CentOS releasing new versions of their respective Red Hat–alike Linux distros.

Red Hat released RHEL 6.5 in late November as a minor update to its industry-leading enterprise Linux platform. Among its new features are support for Docker application containers, improved virtualization support, expanded storage capabilities, and support for the Precision Time Protocol (PTP).

As is its wont, Oracle has now taken Red Hat's source code and rolled it into its own distribution, Oracle Linux 6.5, adding a smattering of unique features of its own in the process.

The chief difference between Oracle Linux and RHEL is that Oracle Linux ships with a different kernel by default (although customers can opt to switch to a kernel built from the same source code as RHEL's, if they prefer).

Dubbed the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel, the latest version is based on Linux kernel version 3.8.13, while every release in the RHEL 6 line has shipped with a kernel based on version 2.6.32.

Even though the two kernels differ in their major version numbers, however, there's not a vast difference between the two. The switch from 2.x to 3.x was made for version numbering purposes only, and both Red Hat and Oracle have continued to apply patches and bug fixes to their respective products.

With this release, however, Oracle has integrated its DTrace debugging technology – which was originally developed for the proprietary Solaris OS – into the Unbreakable Linux Kernel by default, making Oracle Linux the only distro to provide out-of-the-box support for DTrace.

Oracle Linux 6.5 also includes production support for Linux Containers, improvements to InfiniBand support, and the ability to run Oracle Linux as a Hyper-V guest on Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2, among other updates. A detailed list of changes in the latest kernel can be found here.

Individual software packages are available for download from Oracle's public yum repository now, and full ISO installation images will be posted to the Oracle Software Delivery Cloud soon. The code is available free of charge, but as usual, if you'd like commercial support for your servers, you'll need to work that out with Oracle.

Meanwhile, CentOS, that other free Linux distribution "derived from sources freely provided to the public by a prominent North American Enterprise Linux vendor" – no names, please – has also updated its distribution to version 6.5.

"There are many fundamental changes in this release, compared with the past CentOS-6 releases," the CentOS team wrote in its launch announcement, "and we highly recommend everyone study the Release Notes as well as the upstream Technical Notes about the changes and how they might impact your installation."

Most of these changes are related to new features and fixes introduced in RHEL 6.5, but CentOS also makes some modifications to packages of its own, and it also removes some packages that are included in RHEL.

Installation images for CentOS 6.5 are available now from the project's website for x86 and x64.

A third RHEL-derived Linux distro, Scientific Linux, has yet to update its sources to match RHEL 6.5, and no release date for Scientific Linux 6.5 has been announced. Typically, Scientific Linux releases have lagged four to eight weeks behind the corresponding RHEL releases, so a new version is doubtless coming soon. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU
Cupertino stands down after Euro legal threats
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
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.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.