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Linux Automation. Any application, anywhere, anytime.
November 7, 2007
by Brian Stevens, CTO, VP Engineering
Today Red Hat made some announcements, under an umbrella theme of Linux Automation. At first glance, this would seem surprising. But when you tear it apart, a focus on automation makes extreme sense.
Go back 10 years and look what was happening in the processor space. Price/performance of Intel CPUs was challenging the legacy RISC systems. Microsoft was the largest benefactor of this, while the OEMs clung to their high margin UNIX/RISC systems. Who could blame them.
In 2001 Red Hat squarely focused on the commercial enterprise systems business. The enabler for this was no longer solely price/performance of x86 systems. But the recognition that technically, Linux had matured to the point to not just be an alternative to UNIX/RISC, but actually a market leader. Enterprise Linux was born, along with pioneering a subscription model that would keep us focusing on customer satisfaction and service rather than just the initial sale.
Today, millions of servers around the world are powered by Enterprise Linux. The heroes being the IT departments which made this choice, challenging the legacy before it was mainstream. What now is the obvious choice due to performance and cost.
The last 6 years have been focused on UNIX migration, allowing x86 performance to be realized, and building software subscription capabilities. In the next chapter we believe that Enterprise Linux will continue to take share against Windows solely based on performance, stability, and cost. However, basically due to impatience we wish to accelerate what has already become a behavioral norm for IT.
Linux Automation. The ability to run any application, on any system, at any time. Allowing IT to simplify their IT infrastructure in the process. With the belief that undue complexity and over-architecture will have both short and long term costs.
The RHEL application world, at 3000+ certification strong, is growing at the rate of approximately a new application every day. Application choice is critical for IT. The stability of the RHEL platform, and its release-to-release continuity allows application growth to continue without disruption.
The move to x86 marked an inflection point for IT from the traditional use of large RISC servers. Today, the footprint which makes up the IT arsenal looks increasingly differentiated, allowing the right server to be matched with the right task. Rack-mount. Blades. 128-way SMP. Mainframes. PowerPC and Itanium. Virtualized servers based on VMWARE and RHEL 5. We want to enable IT choice, not dictate it. And deliver a consistent RHEL platform across each which drives IT simplicity, while allowing ISVs to reach all markets at low cost. Today we announce that the platform choice for RHEL has extended one further. Dedicated and virtual servers are now joined by a 3rd twin, with RHEL being available as an on-demand choice as part of Amazon EC2. With a supported ISV catalog 3000+ strong.
When the first version of Enterprise Linux was released in May of 2002, a physical system and its applications typically had a one to one affinity. The models of moving applications from one system to another was usually only realized at failover time, requiring costly hardware and hard labor to realize. Today the technology is in place to flip this. RHEL5 with integrated virtualization has built application mobility into the OS. Transparent to all applications on the platform. The resources apportioned to an application can be changed on demand. Applications can be live migrated to another system, ending the scheduling of planned outages. High availability delivered to all applications on the platform, at low cost.
To the 1000s of customers to whom Linux, OSS, and Red Hat has earned their trust, we thank you. The journey of the impact of open source software on your businesses has just begun.
Linux Automation. Any application. Anywhere. Anytime.