Red Hat releases Spacewalk and oVirt

For a moment there I thought XMas came suprisingly early this year as Red Hat keeps announcing new Open Sourced projects. It all started in June 2005 with the release of the Fedora Directory Server. FDS is the enterprise-class Open Source LDAP server for Linux. It is hardened by real-world use, is full-featured, supports multi-master replication and already handles many of the largest LDAP deployments in the world.

After the release of FDS it went quiet for a while. But on March 19 2008 Red Hat released the Dogtag Certificate System. DCS is is an enterprise-class open source certificate authority (CA). It is a full-featured system and has been hardened by real-world deployments. It supports all aspects of certificate lifecycle management, including key archival, OCSP, smartcard management, and much more.

Then on April 25 2008 Red Hat released freeIPA. freeIPA is an integrated security information management solution combining Linux (Fedora), Fedora Directory Server, MIT Kerberos, NTP, DNS. It consists of a web interface and command-line administration tools. Currently it supports identity management with plans to support policy and auditing management

This week at their annual Summit Red Hat announced two more gems: Spacewalk and oVirt.

Spacewalk is an open source (GPLv2) Linux systems management solution. It is the upstream community project from which the Red Hat Network Satellite product is derived. Spacewalk manages software content updates for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and other Linux distributions such as Fedora, CentOS, and Scientific Linux, within your firewall. You can stage software content through different environments, managing the deployment of updates to systems and allowing you to view at which update level any given system is at across your deployment. A clean central web interface allows viewing of systems and their software update status, and initiating update actions.

In addition to software content management, Spacewalk provides provisioning and monitoring capabilities. It will enable you to kickstart systems, as well as manage and deploy configuration files. Spacewalk’s monitoring feature allows you to view monitoring status for your systems alongside their software update status. Spacewalk also has virtualization capabilities to enable you to provision, control, manage, and monitor virtual Xen guests.

oVirt is the next step in open virtual machine management. From running a few virtual machines on a single host to managing thousands of VMs over hundreds of hosts on a network, oVirt is built to make virtualization easy and expand to meet your needs. oVirt is small host image that provides libvirt and hosts virtual machines and provides a Web-based virtual machine management console.

Another notable project is Cobbler. Cobbler is a Linux provisioning server that allows for rapid setup of network installation environments. With a simple series of commands, network installs can be configured for PXE, reinstallations, and virtualized installs using Xen or KVM. Cobbler uses a helper program called ‘Koan’ (which interacts with Cobbler) for reinstallation and virtualization support.

Red Hat’s actions speak for itself. It really is a truly Open Source focused company that puts its money where its mouth is. Respect.

Does Canonical give back to the Community?

Google Tech Talks has a great presentation by Greg Kroah Hartman about the Linux kernel. I’ve seen it before and would only suggest to watch it yourself if it weren’t for Mike McGrath’s comment today on his blog. What does Canonical contribute back to the Community at large? And I don’t mean the Ubuntu Community but really the Community at large. A comment below Greg’s video says that Canonical had 6 changes for kernel 2.6.26 and not in the past 5 years. Even if that is the case then it’s still a number so low that one can hardly call Canonical a serious contributor. So is Canonical just leeching from others? Since I’m a Red Hat/CentOS/Fedora guy I can’t say but to me it seems Canonical should step up their kernel development contribution. But wait there’s more. Didn’t Mark Shuttleworth recently make a plea for syncing new releases of the main distributions. This concept was shot down as a lame attempt to be able to leech more work from for example Fedora and Red Hat. So what does Canonical actually contribute back to the Community? From where I’m standing it looks like not much.

Update: read Ben Collins’ take here and decide for yourself. He has a point that GregKH used incomplete data. However, Ben’s comment pretty much says it all about Canonical’s contributions back to the community: “Second off, using a check for ^Author with a canonical.com or ubuntu.com email address in the v2.6.25 tag of the upstream kernel tree, shows 91 commits (I should know the numbers, since 63 of those were from me). Granted, Redhat and SuSe outnumber us considerably, but then we don’t have > 100 kernel developers on staff (we have less than 10).”.

So I’ll stand by my initial observation. With only 91 commits from less than 10 Canonical kernel developers I can imagine that Mark Shuttleworth would like to sync releases with the major distro’s that spent an awful lot of money on kernel and other development. Yet at the same time Canonical apparently has enough money to send an Ubuntu DVD to anyone interested no matter where they are. I guess it’s a matter of priorities. So how much does Canonical contribute back? Doesn’t seem to get any better with this new information.

Holland – France: 4 – 1

I watched the game with a couple of friends. What a great match. Overall attractive gameplay. Quick passes keeping the pace high and creating scoring chances for both teams. I wasn’t too sure about this one and neither were my friends. I mostly heard 0-0, 1-0, 0-1 or 1-1. Who could have imagined 4-1?! When Thierry Henry scored for Les Blues (the French team) putting them only one goal behind at 2-1 people around me got anxious. I recalled similar situations where the opponent gets alongside and wins in the end so it was paramount for Oranje (the Dutch team) to prevent France from leveling the score. Only one minute after Henry’s goal Arjan Robben did exactly that and made a beautiful goal from an almost impossible position. If that wasn’t the end for Les Blues then Wesley Sneijder shattered any hopes the French still had.