Enterprise Linux Log

April 9, 2007  3:27 PM

Samba 3.0.25rc1 Available for Download


Fresh from Samba.org are the latest features included in the 3.0.25 code base:

  • Significant improvements in the winbind off-line logon support.
  • Support for secure DDNS updates as part of the ‘net ads join’
  • Rewritten IdMap interface which allows for TTL based caching and
    per domain backends.
  • New plug-in interface for the “winbind nss info” parameter.
  • New file change notify subsystem which is able to make use of
    inotify on Linux.
  • Support for passing Windows security descriptors to a VFS
    plug-in allowing for multiple Unix ACL implements to running side
    by side on the Same server.
  • Improved compatibility with Windows Vista clients including
    improved read performance with Linux servers.
  • Man pages for VFS plug-ins.

“This is the first release candidate of the Samba 3.0.25 code base and is provided for testing only. An RC release means that we are close to the final release but the code may still have a few remaining minor bugs.” — Samba release manager Jerry Carter

April 9, 2007  10:16 AM

Hyperic CEO Javier Soltero on open source software


Hyperic systems managementI just had to mention this post over at Blogging Hyperic because, well, it mentions me.

Basically, Javier goes into the differences between open source today and open source 10 years ago. He’s a pretty energetic interview, which is good, since SearchEnterpriseLinux will be talking a lot about systems management on Linux this year.

Go take a look, and tell me your systems management horror stories while you’re at it.

April 9, 2007  9:18 AM

Mynewplace.com and Nagios false alarms


In what is quickly becoming a *gulp* systems management series, I am working on a sweet little case study featuring Mynewplace.com. When they aren’t listing apartment rentals online, Mynewplace.com is wrestling with server false alarms triggered by some incompatibilities between Nagios and Resin, an open source application stack they have deployed in their data center.

Mynewplace.com’s IT director John Shin was a great interview, and we often got off on a tangent talking about other aspects of his data center, including his use of Postgres over MySQL and the testing he did with Novell SUSE Linux that didn’t run out so well (he uses Fedora Core 4 today).

Look for some open source systems management original content from SearchEnterpriseLinux.com tomorrow or do some apartment hunting today. Your choice.

April 9, 2007  9:07 AM

Debian GNU/Linux 4.0 released


Debian GNU/Linux 4.0 releasedThe Debian Project has announced the release (finally) of version 4.0 (codenamed Etch):

The Debian Project is pleased to announce the official release of Debian GNU/Linux version 4.0, codenamed etch, after 21 months of constant development. Debian GNU/Linux is a free operating system which supports a total of eleven processor architectures and includes the KDE, GNOME and Xfce desktop environments. It also features cryptographic software and compatibility with the FHS v2.3 and software developed for version 3.1 of the LSB.

It’s finally out, and not a moment too soon. With Ian Murlock calling the project a “process run amok” and Ubuntu gaining momentum everywhere but in the kitchen sink, things were getting a bit hectic.

UPDATE@10:35: Seems Debian also has a new leader as well. iTWire is reporting that Sam Hocevar, a French developer, who has been with the project since 2000, was elected as leader for 2007-08 on Sunday.

April 5, 2007  9:28 AM

Oracle exec Mike Olson tells a tale of two downloads


Oracle Mike OlsonDownloads? Oracle doesn’t need no stinkin’ downloads!

OK, so I exaggerate just a bit, but in my defense this IS a blog. Oracle vice president of Embedded Technologies Mike Olson didn’t say anything of the sort today in his blog post defending Oracle’s Unbreakable Linux, but he did attempt to lay out a case as to why Oracle Enterprise Linux downloads (at 9,000 or so since launch) were the apple to Fedora’s oranges (24k per day).

“Counting downloads of Oracle Enterprise Linux is a waste of time,” Olson said, because Fedora downloads are typically people who have no intention of paying Red Hat for services or support anytime soon. On the other hand, Olson argues that those 9k or so Oracle Enterprise Linux downloads are customers — or “business buyers” — who are “willing to pay for support and bug fixes, and for ongoing access to pre-built, tested binary releases.”

For Olson, Oracle’s play wasn’t about getting RHEL out of the enterprise, it was about getting Oracle’s brand of Linux support in. The rest, if it ever happens, would be gravy.

Said Olson:

Oracle is able to offer services to enterprise users who already have RHEL installed. This is crucial. The leading role of the RHEL distribution in the enterprise is exactly why Oracle chose to support it, and not some other distribution, in our Unbreakable Linux support offering. Enterprises running RHEL today can switch to Oracle’s services without downloading a new copy of the operating system. Naturally, any enterprise running production systems is reluctant to reinstall anything at all in order to switch vendors. It’s just too risky to change the tires while the car is moving.The effect is that Oracle is able to convert downloads to paying customers without requiring a download.

If you remember, this is something SearchEnterpriseLinux.com covered earlier in the week. Senior analyst Raven Zachary of the 451 Group said the movement on this issue going on today was early adopters only, but he expected that to change. Expect that change, if it does in fact occur, to arrive about the same time as Red Hat’s support renewal cycles.

And just one last note: I wonder how Olson’s tune would sound if it was Oracle Enterprise Linux that was enjoying 24,000 downloads a day, and not Fedora? I wonder…

April 5, 2007  8:24 AM

Xandros reveals Linux server management via Microsoft Vista consoles


XandrosHot on the heels of their first foray into the world of heterogeneous systems management, Xandros has announced the completion of a Windows-based version of Xandros Management Console (xMC). The company said in a release that the new version remotely manages Linux servers from any networked Windows Vista or Windows XP client.

That’s great for Xandros that they’re expanding their application suite to encompass the new version of Windows, but a quick scan of the headlines today says no one is upgrading to Vista. Sure, people know about it, but making the upgrade isn’t in the cards just yet. Linux vendors must be licking their chops.

April 4, 2007  9:37 AM

IBM’s second annual open source analyst meeting


Take one multi-billion dollar company, add a sprinkling of inquisitive analysts and a smattering of open source software, and you’ll have the annual IBM open source analyst briefing, which happened last week.

Analyst Joe Clabby, who’s spoke with SearchEnterpriseLinux.com in the past about topics like Xen paravirtualization, attended the event and came back armed with 30-odd pages of notes.

The takeaway? That IBM had firmed up its message from one year ago, and was decidedly more serious this time around about filling “gaps” in its support of open source software.

According to Clabby (who was writing for Charles King’s Pund-IT Review), some of last year’s gaps included:

  • IBM’s open source business/revenue models were a little “tenuous”;
  • The fiercely independent open source community had yet to indicate that it wanted large, commercial vendor involvement in their initiatives;
  • There were large infrastructure-related holes that needed to be filled;
  • Customer buying preferences were not clearly understood;
  • IBM and other commercial vendors needed to prove that they could all play well together in the open source sandbox – especially when it came to building common standards to support open source initiatives

But things have firmed up a bit this year, Clabby said, and had gone from “mushy” to firm with the help of a few panel sessions:

  • One of the panels had four business partners willing to speak about IBM’s efforts in open source. On this panel I asked each partner to describe his open source business/revenue model. To my surprise, I found four different models [one software as a service (SAS) approach; one SAS wannabe; one user-based pricing; and one custom-based pricing]. In short, there appear to be about eight or ten valid models for deriving revenue in the open source space – and IBM’s business partners – as well as IBM are using several of them.
  • In addition to panel discussions, IBM presented 16 sub-sessions related to open source including open communities; the impact of Web 2.0; application server progress; software delivery models; small/midsized business initiatives; systems/storage management; real-time Linux, grids, and more. Suffice it to say, that IBM is very, very active in many, many aspects and areas of open source computing.
  • IBM is placing a lot of emphasis on creating turnkey, replicable, branded system/application/server products to simplify market delivery of its open source solutions

Exciting times at IBM for open source.

April 3, 2007  1:17 PM

My field trip to Novell Linux Day


NovellIt was a rainy morning here in New England, but lucky for me I got to spend it inside Novell’s Waltham, Mass.-based HQ learning about SUSE Enterprise Linux 10. In addition to providing me with yet another copy of a Linux distro (I have Ubuntu, Red Hat Enterprise Desktop and Server 10, and and really old DVD of Fedora Core lying around here somewhere), Novell execs provided the audience of 100 or so with insight as to where the company is headed with Microsoft, virtualization and the data center. Continued »

April 2, 2007  9:48 AM

Oracle Linux is making waves


So the Yahoo announcement from Oracle wasn’t quite the coup Larry Ellison made it out to be, but it appears they weren’t done yet.

Today, we learn of at least 10 companies that have gone on the record saying they’ve adopted Oracle Unbreakable Linux in some form or another. I say it that way because it’s still kind of hazy as to how much Oracle Linux is being used; how much Red Hat Linux was removed, if any; and what kinds of applications are being run on top of Oracle Linux.

It’s all quite hazy — especially in light of the exaggerated Yahoo claims made by Oracle — so it’s a good thing I have a call with Monica Kumar, Oracle’s senior director Open Source product marketing, later today, huh?

NOTE: This is all starting to gel with reporting SearchEnterpriseLinux.com did earlier this year. Basically, that link goes to our article on the user response to discounted Linux support. For IT managers there really are no “favorites” — just whatever works best for the job at hand, and at the best price possible.

March 30, 2007  2:00 PM

GPLv3: Too ambiguous for its own good?


I’m doing some follow up on the discussion draft of GPLv3 today, and it’s not going well for the folks at the Free Software Foundation. The positive press that surrounded the draft on day one has melted away to reveal what resembles widespread criticism of not only the draft, but of the FSF itself. As people read over section 11, and noted the bracketed “needs work” text, they started asking: Is Novell’s partnership grandfathered in to the GPLv3?

In an interview with Boston-based IP attorney Jeff Seul today, he and I discussed the GPL and its “ambiguity problem.” It was Seul’s opinion that the draft has become such an ambiguous mess he could no longer provide legal advice for clients coming to his office with the intent of starting a new business of project based on GPLv3’d software. In Seul’s words, “the FSF model is collapsing in on itself.”

While that interview percolates in the editing chamber, you can chew on this email I received from one of my user contacts regarding the GPL. In it, founder of the Washington, D.C., Linux Users Group and a researcher at the University of Maryland Przemek Klosowski tells a tale of two generals, and delves into the DRM aspects of the draft.

I am bemused. As the old military saying goes, the one thing worse than a bad general is two good generals. I see problems with GPL2 but the problem of dealing with differences and choices between GPL v.2 and v.3 just seem like a headache. The big difference is in DRM approach, and I would prefer that people had an option: either not care and use GPL2 or add an anti-DRM clause. Stallman wanted the anti-DRM to be the default so that why it is not an extra clause but the whole new version.

In the end it is just a lot of lawyerspeak barking, while the FOSS caravan goes on.

FOSS carries on, for sure, but will the FSF?

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