Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 Now Available

January 13, 2011

by Red Hat Enterprise Linux Team

In November 2010, Red Hat released a new major version of its operating platform with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6. Though Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 is available for customers with extensive new features and enablements, we continue to update our Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 platform through its seven-year lifecycle that extends to 2014. We recognize that many of our customers are still utilizing the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 platform and we continue to enhance this version, as well as earlier versions of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, to continue providing leading technology and choice to our customers through the full lifecycle of each release.

Red Hat today announced the general availability of the sixth update to its Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 platform to all active subscribers. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 provides a broad set of bug and security fixes, new hardware enablement and back-ports of enhancements in areas such as networking, virtualization, web services, security authentication and file systems. The changes introduced in 5.6 include a total of approximately 2,000 individual fixes, as well as approximately 340 individual enhancements and hardware enablement changes.

Highlights of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 include:

  • Hardware enablement

    The release continues to enable new hardware from Red Hat partners, encompassing processors and chipsets launching in 2011, I/O (iSCSI & iSNS) and multimedia, combined with numerous driver updates. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 provides updated installation media to allow easier installation on new OEM platforms using the newly enabled hardware.

  • Virtualization improvements

    Several virtualization feature updates are provided in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6. These include support for sVirt (SELinux virtualization), which enables Mandatory Access Control (MAC) profiles to be applied to virtual guests, enhancing overall system security. Additionally, new I/O fencing capabilities enable Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtual guests configured with the High Availability (HA) Add-On to be supported when layered on a Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization infrastructure. This provides customers with greater flexibility when deploying highly available virtualized and cloud computing environments.

  • Updated Domain Name Service (DNS) packages

    With updated DNS packages, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 improves the cryptographic signatures that are valuable for high-security installations, such as in the government sector and environments where signed DNS domains are expanding in importance.

  • Expanded PHP web application stack support

    By incorporating the new PHP 5.3 release, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 provides customers with the ability to utilize the latest PHP technology prior to upgrading to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.

  • New printing capabilities

    Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 provides support for new printing capabilities by supporting the OpenVector Printer driver and by including support for the latest models of printers from HP.

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 backports

    Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 includes a number of features that bring some improvements introduced with the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 to 5.6. These include support for the Ext4 file system and incorporation of features, such as the System Security Services Daemon and gcc 4.4 compiler, that are compatible with the respective versions in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.

    Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 is delivered in the Production One phase of the overall platform’s lifecycle, and its bug-fixes, new software features and expanded hardware support are provided while keeping all application interfaces stable. This allows Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 systems to be updated to take advantage of 5.6 capabilities without perturbation or re-certification of their applications.

    Customers with existing installations of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 can easily update their machines online using Red Hat Network or the local update tools included in Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

    For more information about Red Hat Enterprise Linux, visit here.

    To access the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 release notes, visit here. Detailed technical notes on the release are available here.

Back to top