Virgin America Chooses Red Hat Solutions to Scale Website


United States, August 15, 2007

Airline utilizes Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Red Hat Network and services; makes plans for an extended JBoss implementation

Red Hat (NYSE: RHT), the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that Virgin America, the newly launched American airline, has selected Red Hat Enterprise Linux as the platform on which to host its commercial website. The airline chose Red Hat Enterprise Linux for its reputation for scalability and security.

As San Francisco's hometown airline, Virgin America is a next-generation low-fare carrier that will serve as many as 10 cities within a year of operation, and up to 30 cities within five years. Virgin America's new planes will offer a host of innovative guest features aimed at bringing fun back to flying including the most advanced personal in-flight entertainment system in the domestic airline market, mood-lit cabins, custom-designed leather seats and plugs for laptops and other portable electronic devices at every seat. The airline begins flights in August 2007.

Since its start, Virgin America has based its IT infrastructure on Linux using varied distributions of Fedora since the launch of Fedora Core 2. The company valued its experience with Fedora and benefited from the community-based, cost-effective advantages of the operating system. Desiring to continue its work with Red Hat and also obtain a solution with a longer life cycle and reliable support, the airline chose to migrate its proxy servers to Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

"Fedora was a fantastic solution for us as we began our journey with open source," said Ravi Simhambhatla, director of architecture and integration at Virgin America. "As our need for fine-grained control and scalability grew, we decided to migrate to Red Hat Enterprise Linux for its reputation as a resilient, secure and scalable platform as well as for its incredible support. Red Hat has the best kernel engineers in the world and when I'm in a real bind, it's priceless to have the ability to call someone who has the knowledge to get us on track quickly."

The airline's core website relies on a combination of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, Squid and Apache. Since migrating to Red Hat solutions, its consistent website requirement has scaled to over six times as many hits per second using two load balances. In addition to enhancing performance, Virgin America's solution still enables cost savings in terms of hardware and real estate costs and is supported by Red Hat Network, which the airline utilizes for systems management, security errata and as its primary source of information and guidance for maintaining its infrastructure.

Virgin America's migration from Fedora to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 will be completed by the end of 2007. The company already makes use of JBoss solutions for its core kiosks, plans to soon obtain support for the JBoss Application Stack and will eventually expand its JBoss rollout. "We feel it couldn't have been better news for JBoss users to see the middleware company become a part of Red Hat, and now have all its solutions offered under the same support umbrella. With Red Hat's level of supportability, we hope to see the next cut of our website using JBoss," said Simhambhatla.

"Virgin America has been a great example of a complex deployment where open source could truly be an asset. Milestones have been achieved with agility, and performance has increased dramatically," said Brian Stevens, CTO at Red Hat. "We're happy to be in this partnership with Virgin America as they grow their U.S. deployment. We'll continue to work together to keep scaling at a rapid pace."

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