Shuttleworth Highlights the Growth of Ubuntu in the Enterprise Server Business

For years, the Enterprise Server business has been dominated by Linux distributions. Debian and CentOS are the most popular of these distributions with 9.8 and 9.1 percent of total market share, respectively. However, over the past year, Ubuntu has been rising in popularity to threaten Red Hat’s position as the third most popular Linux distribution for servers.

Ubuntu is preferred on the server because of its LTS releases, which are supported with updates for long years. Moreover, it has a large base of zealots who participate closely in the state of affairs. This gives Ubuntu servers excellent hardware support, security, timely updates and ease of installation.

However, Shuttleworth attributes the growth of Ubuntu Server business to the enhanced focus on quality.

The key driver of this has been that we added quality as a top-level goal across the teams that build Ubuntu – both Canonical’s and the community’s. We also have retained the focus on keeping the up-to-date tools available on Ubuntu for developers, and on delivering a great experience in the cloud, where computing is headed.

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However, the data referred by Shuttleworth in his blog post cannot be taken at face value. The graph that Shuttleworth used to bolster his claims was derived from public websites as a whole and not just enterprise business. Nonetheless, Red Hat has based a billion dollar business around this business of enterprise servers, and the slightest hint that Canonical is about to overtake Red Hat with Ubuntu can shake things up in the world of Linux based server distros.

Red Hat Plans to Hire A Huge Workforce While Warning Against Diminishing Hiring Trends

Red Hat has recently revealed that it wants to hire over 1000 new employees. This is a whopping 25% of the current employee strength. Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst has confirmed that it will hire all these 1000 employees in the year 2012. Red Hat being the first billion dollar company from the Linux family, this hiring spree tells a lot about the future trends in job growths, at enterprises like these.

Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst believes that the rise of cloud services will attract employees for now, but with time, these very cloud services will be responsible for a slower job growth.

Companies are finally starting to see significant productivity gains from technology, so they are able to grow without hiring as many people.

“We are hiring, and I’m sure companies like Amazon and others who provide cloud computing are hiring. However, I think that is a drop in the bucket relative to the productivity we are providing enterprises, and that again leads to, unfortunately, slower job growth.

However, the hiring spree is not seen only at Red Hat. SUSE VP of Linux Engineering has also declared that they will have openings for 10 to 20 positions per week. That makes around 1000 employees at Attachmate too.

With an increase in cloud services, a skilled workforce is an absolutely necessity to manage the infrastructure and make it fail-safe.

RedHat Developer Comes Up With Alternative To The “Magic” 200 Line Kernel Patch

Two days back we reported about  a 200 line patch for the Linux kernel which increases the system responsiveness under heavy load. The patch was applied to the Linux kernel not long ago and so it will take some time to appear for most of the users.

Interestingly, a RedHat developer, Lennart Poettering, has come up with an alternative to the kernel patch which does exactly the same thing. The most unbelievable thing about Poettering’s alternative is that it consist of just four lines of code which has to be added to the ~/.bashrc file.

Poettering’s method is ready for use by anyone. All you have to do is add the floowing lines of code in the ~/.bashrc file:  (Note: I have not tried this myself.)

if [ "$PS1" ] ; then
mkdir -m 0700 /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user/$$
echo $$ > /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user/$$/tasks
fi

After adding these commands run the following commands as super user:

mount -t cgroup cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu -o cpu
mkdir -m 0777 /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user

It seems unbelievable that just these four lines of code can do the same function as a 200+ lines of kernel patch. However, there are indications that Poettering’s method might be actually better than the original kernel patch.

For Ubuntu users who want to try this, WebUpd8 has a step-by-step tutorial on how to do it.

Red Hat Becomes the First Billion Dollar Open Source Company

Open Source has been a much advocated part of the tech industry and is extremely popular for its ideology. However, there was a general belief of lack of profits from Open Source business and there was no top-notch Open Source company to prove this wrong.

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Red Hat is out to set a record by becoming the first billion dollar Open Source Company in the world leaving Oracle behind in the competition. Almost 20% of the one billion alone comes from this quarter’s profits and Red Hat is performing remarkably well in its business. The overall revenue itself has increased by 20% and Red Hat is showing signs of immense growth.

The closest competitor Oracle’s cheap stunts have failed to impress customers enough. We all know of the cheap RHEL knockoff  it was trying to sell. Oracle is doing it once again and this time, it has claimed that the new Linux it has developed is 75% faster than RHEL. However, we know how benchmarks can be manipulated and I mean technically.

Charlie Peters, Red Hat’s Executive VP and CFO says,

Our revenue and operating income growth continued this quarter with strong double digit gains in both, despite the foreign currency head wind. It is clear that our value proposition is resonating with customers.

It feels god to see that at least one Open Source company is going strong.

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Red Hat Denies Oracle as the Largest Open Source Company

We all know that after acquiring Sun Microsystems, Oracle became the largest open source company around. Red Hat finds this hard to believe and goes to the length of saying that Oracle is not even an open source company.

Paul Cormier, president of products and technologies at Red Hat has claimed that neither Oracle and nor Sun were as involved in open source as Red Hat has been. He goes on to say,

Open is not just seeing the code. Open is also having a community of developers. OpenSolaris is not open. There is no community other than Sun people developing Solaris.

Clearly in the wake of competition, Red Hat is trying to change the very face of open source. Though, whatever Paul  said in that statement is correct commercially even though it  might not match with the ideology of open source.

Every open-source product is incomplete without a dedicated global community. Additionally, finance is not the only thing that is needed to keep open source software alive.

Clearly, implementing open source as a business is not as easy as it may sound. All eyes are set on the management plan Oracle brings in for Java. This will define a lot of changes as Java is currently the most used platform.
(Via: NetworkWorld )

Fedora 13 Beta Released

500px-RH-Fedora_logo-nonfreeFedora 13 Beta was just released a few hours ago. Named Goddard, the final version of Fedora 13 will sport many new features such as KDE 4.4, latest builds of the XFCE environment and Sugar Learning Environment apart from the usual bug fixes and functionality additions.

If you are looking for the bigger catch, wait up for the final release in the middle of May this year. For those restless, download the beta iso from here. And of course, if you don’t know your way around bugs and geeky mosquitoes, don’t download this. The Beta is presumably the last crucial milestone of Fedora 13, and as such, only critical bugs will be fixed now for the coming final release.

The Beta has a number of new features, such as automatic print driver installation with the help of PackageKit; new software such as ShotWell photo manager, Pino microblogging client; NetworkManager improvements over bluetooth and mobile broadband connectivity; support for the latest iPods and iPhones and 3D graphics support backed solely by open source drivers.

That’s not all. There’s also better color management: so your documents bear the same color on screen and on paper. Also, the user management portal has been completely redesigned for easier access and use.

The above is the feature-list that may interest the end user, Fedora 13 has got several goodies for both developers and administrators as well. Developers get easier Python debugging when using gdb and support for NetBeans Java EE 6 among other features. For sys admins, there’s quite a few improvements with BFO (allows users to download a single, tiny image and install current and future versions of Fedora without having to download additional images), SSSD (provides expanded features for logging into managed domains), IPv6 support, support for Zarafa Groupware (Microsoft Exchange alternative) among others. Check out a detailed feature list here.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.5 Released; Beta Version of RHEL 6 Coming Soon

RedHat has recently upgraded its Linux server product to RHEL 5.5 with many new features and performance improvements. The latest OS from RedHat has improved  Windows Interportability and  Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM)  Virtualization which allows running unsupported hardware through an emulator. It also includes support for newer hardware of Intel and AMD.

Tim Burke, vice president of platform engineering at Red Hat, reported to InternetNews.com that,

We overlap on our releases as it takes many years to produce the new version – RHEL 6 – which is currently in development, Within the coming month we’ll have our beta release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.

The hardware is of nominal value until you’ve got the software to enable it and that’s what really shines in RHEL 5.5. We’ve done a huge number of scalability enhancements for both bare metal and virtualization environments.

RedHat will also announce the availability of RHEL 6 in June. This will be the next major version after the release of RHEL 5 in 2007.

One major improvement in RHEL 5.5 is the support for new processor families from Intel (Westmere) and AMD (Opteron). One major feature improvement is the Runtime Allocation which allows processes to scale their memory requirements at runtime. Interportability with Windows 7 has also been improved through improvements in Samba.

Get a 30 days trial version of RHEL 5.5 through the RedHat Network.
(Via: Serverwatch)

Red Hat Launches OpenSource.com

For those of you who have come across Linux, might have definitely heard about Red Hat, and might have even used RHEL distros at some point of time. Red Hat the free and open source (FOSS) company has been around since 1993 and has played a big part in bringing the features from UNIX and distributing it as Linux.

OpenSource.com 

After almost 17 years of existence, Red Hat has finally launched a new website called Open Source (http://opensource.com) where users can find the latest news, apps and information about products that follow the FOSS fundamentals.

We want to shine a light on the places where the open source way is multiplying ideas and effort, even beyond technology. We believe that opensource.com will be a gathering place for many of the open source stories we’d like to share–through articles, audio, web presentations, video, or open discussion.

The core fundamentals behind the site is to have more and more users to start using Open Source, and their main focus is to tap into the Education, Business and Government users. This initiative does not come as a surprise since most businesses and Government agencies are looking to cut costs that they have to bear when they use closed source and proprietary software.

Open Source Red Hat

OpenSource.com like any other FOSS project is a community driven project, and any users who are interested to contribute can pitch in with help. To start contributing to OpenSource.com, read the guidelines here and register to start voicing your opinions.