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Novell nears real-time Linux release

Sep 20, 2006 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive

Novell will reportedly launch a “real-time” version of Linux in October. SUSE Linux Enterprise Edition Real-time (SLERT) will be available only with a “consulting engagement,” and will target “soft” real-time applications tolerant of interrupt latencies as slow as 27 microseconds, according to a story at CNET.

Novell plans to announce SLERT on Oct. 9, at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando, Fla., CNET says. Also participating in the launch will be real-time x86 SMP Linux specialist Concurrent.

Concurrent “did much of the engineering work behind the real-time version that Novell will market,” according to Novell director of marketing Justin Steinman, as indirectly quoted by CNET.

Concurrent has traditionally used Red Hat Linux as the foundation of its “Red Hawk” real-time Linux distribution, which is marketed primarily for military, aerospace, and defense applications. However, in April, Concurrent ported its real-time technology to SUSE, signing up Novell to help sell and support the product.

Apparently, the joint Novell/Concurrent real-time offering has done well, with early customers that include Siemens Medical Solutions (SMS). SMS reportedly uses or will use SLERT in its “Magnetom” family of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners.

The CNET story suggests that the SLERT/Concurrent approach only works on multi-processor systems, and that Linux's multi-processor support is only mature enough on x86. It goes on to look at alternative approaches to Linux real-time, with a focus on Wind River and FSMLabs.

Finally, the article discusses the mainstream Linux kernel community's approach to real-time, ending with a discussion of a possible 2.6.19-1.6.20 timeframe for the inclusion of Ingo Molnar's “Preempt RT” patches in the stable Linux tree.

The full CNET story is here. Be sure to also read our recent coverage of the Novell/Concurrent partnership, and Concurrent's real-time technology, here.


 
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