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CentOS 5.6 ships as Red Hat preps cloud app platform

Apr 12, 2011 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 2 views

The CentOS community project announced CentOS 5.6, which clones the vast majority of features in Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5.6, including its full embrace of the Ext4 filesystem. Meanwhile, Red Hat will announce a new cloud application-building platform at its Red Hat Summit May 3, based on technology acquired when it purchased Makara last year, says eWEEK.

CentOS 5.6 ships less than a year after the arrival of CentOS 5.5. The Linux distribution is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5.6, which was released in beta in November and shipped in final form in January.

Somewhat confusingly for those who don't follow the enterprise Linux space, Red Hat released RHEL 6 a few days after the 5.6 beta arrived. With Red Hat maintaining a ten-year lifecycle for its products, the company has another six years to work in more improvements and new features for RHEL 5, which was released in 2007. Eventually, CentOS will get around to its first RHEL 6 clone.

Centos 5.6
(Click to enlarge)

Available for i386 and x86_64 architectures for both client and server installations, CentOS is a community Linux distribution targeted at those who need enterprise-class operating system stability — typically on servers — without the cost of certification and support involved with RHEL. CentOS is said to be 100 percent compatible with RHEL, although the two distributions are not completely identical.

Whereas CentOS 5.4, mimicked RHEL in debuting the KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine) hypervisor, and CentOS 5.5 followed the lead of RHEL 5.5 in introducing memory allocation enhancements for KVM, the main claim to fame of CentOS 5.6 is its adoption of the Ext4 filesystem. Linux has a number of filesystems to choose from, but the Ext3 and the new Ext4 are the primary technologies. Now CentOS follows RHEL 5.6 in jumping to the faster Ext4 technology as its default installation.

Like RHEL 5.6, CentOS 5.6 adds support for BIND 9.7, PHP 5.3, and Hplip3. Upgraded packages are said to include Mod_nss-1.0.8-3.el5 and Python-2.4.3-27.el5_5.3. In addition, there is a long list of updated packages ranging from Firefox to Thunderbird found in the link at the end of the story.

Red Hat cloud app platform coming soon

Red Hat will announce a new cloud application-building platform May 3 at its users conference, Red Hat Summit and JBoss World, in Boston, according to eWEEK. The unnamed cloud platform is said to be based on technology Red Hat acquired when it purchased Makara last year.

The app platform, which enables developers to deploy J2EE applications to the cloud that can scale up or down as demand warrants, will be an integral part of Red Hat's Cloud Foundations strategy, says the story. With the new product, Red Hat expects to move immediately from the sidelines and into the game as a key player in the open source cloud-app market, says eWEEK.


CentOS 5.6 is available now, says the CentOS project. More information and links to downloads may be found on its CentOS 5.6 release notes page.

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