Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5: Some Assembly RequiredBy Jason Brooks | Posted 2007-04-09 Email Print
Review: While eWEEK Labs believes Red Hat is off to a good start with its Xen implementation, companies in search of an out-of-the-box server virtualization solution should not expect it here.
Version 5 of Red Hat's Red Hat Enterprise Linux operating system hit the streets last month, complete with a truckload of updated open-source components and brand-new support for server virtualizationcourtesy of the Xen hypervisor project.
eWEEK Labs tested RHEL 5 with a particular focus on its new virtualization features. While we think that Red Hat is off to a good start with its Xen implementation, companies in search of an out-of-the-box server virtualization solution shouldn't expect it from RHEL 5.
Compared with VMware's VI3 (VMware Infrastructure 3) and with the Xen-based Virtual Iron and XenEnterprise products we've reviewed, RHEL 5's tools for creating and managing guest machines are pretty Spartan, and our experiences installing and running Windows Server 2003 and RHEL 5 guests contained more troubleshooting and Googling than we would have liked.
However, we expect that any company looking for a general-purpose Linux operating system with solid support and lots of hardware and software certifications would be rather pleased with RHEL 5.
At sites where earlier RHEL versions are already in service, the upgrade should fit in particularly well. Red Hat's subscription model has always meant that customers can upgrade between RHEL versions when they want, but the addition of virtualization support offers the alternative of running older versions of RHEL on a RHEL 5 box as virtual machines.