Red Hat unveils workstation OS and updates Advanced Server

Linux vendor Red Hat has released details of its operating system for workstations, and has enhanced its Linux Advanced Server...

Linux vendor Red Hat has released details of its operating system for workstations, and has enhanced its Linux Advanced Server operating system to add support for "carrier-grade" Linux applications.

The announcements were made at the Enterprise Linux Forum Conference & Expo here, where Red Hat chairman, president and chief executive officer Matthew Szulik delivered a keynote address.

The latest features incorporated into Linux Advanced Server include multithreading and clustering. Red Hat has customers that are deploying thousands of servers and "it's absolutely imperative that we deliver" on new high-end capabilities, he said.

Red Hat's workstation release will be available in the first quarter of 2003. Developers will be to create applications that can be deployed on Red Hat Linux Advanced Server. It is also being designed for use specifically in the fields of digital content creation and electronic design automation.

Red Hat and Hewlett-Packard have already targeted the Linux workstation market with the September release of two HP machines running Red Hat Linux Advanced Workstation.

The software vendor is aiming to align its workstation and server operating systems more closely so that developers can create client-server applications using a common code base. Similarities between the two operating systems are also expected to make support and administration easier.

SuSE Linux is also expected to release an operating system specifically designed for workstations. Sun Microsystems, which recently unveiled its own Linux strategy, is also planning a Linux workstation.

Enhancements to Red Hat Advanced Server are the result of recommendations from the Carrier Grade Linux Working Group, which operates within Open Source Development Lab (OSDL), a non-profit research lab backed by Intel, IBM and many of the top Linux distributors.

The new features in Advanced Server aimed at supporting voice and data applications will include improved application portability and performance, support for POSIX-compliant threading, diskless blade systems, improved system responsiveness, advanced debugging and systems analysis, and additional high-availability clustering capabilities. Red Hat plans to make this carrier-grade Linux release available in the middle of 2003.

Product line extensions for Red Hat Linux will include versions of the operating system spanning a range of devices and computers, from high-performance computing (HPC) machines down to point-of-sale (POS) devices, said Mark de Visser, vice-president of marketing for Red Hat.

Read more on PC hardware