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Red Hat is updating its real time version of Enterprise Linux this week with the release of MRG 2.0 (Messaging, Real-Time, Grid). The new MRG release come as Red Hat ramps up its KVM virtualization efforts with the Open Virtualization Alliance (OVF).
The new MRG 2.0 release is built around a deterministic real time core that enables actions to occur in real-time. Red Hat has been developing the MRG real time platform since at least 2007. In 2009, MRG 1.1 was released including new cloud enablement.
With the MRG 2.0 release, Red Hat is adding support for the new Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.1 release. There is also enhanced support for RDMA (Remote Direct Memory Access), that Red Hat says delivers a 100 percent performance boost over 10 Gigabit Ethernet links
"MRG 2.0 also brings a whole new set of management capabilities, including new tools for managing and measuring quality of service," Scott Crenshaw, vice president and general manager of Cloud Business at Red Hat said during a live web event announcing the new technology. "As we move from early stage clouds to the market maturity, quality of service will become increasingly important."
Crenshaw added that MRG 2.0 also includes new diagnostic tools for investigating application workload characteristics. There are also new energy efficient scheduling features so workloads can be optimized for power utilization.
While the mainline Linux kernel has been improving its real time capabilities for years, MRG takes specific advantage of those features.
"The kernel used in MRG is based on the same codebase RHEL 6.1, with certain real time tweaks turned on," Crenshaw said. "MRG has the same software compatibility and software certifications as RHEL, you just get deterministic latency."
MRG is a key part of Red Hat's cloud strategy now, which is based on the KVM hypervisor. Last month, Red Hat helped to launch the Open Virtualization Alliance as a group dedicated to pushing open virtualization-based KVM forward. This week, Red Hat announced that in the last month over 65 new member companies have joined the OVA.
"They are all coming to support KVM as the open alternative for virtualization," Crenshaw said. "Lock-in doesn't help anyone but VMware, we really think that the tide is rising against VMware's hegemony."
In response to a question from the audience, Crenshaw noted that you can build clouds from proprietary software, though he doesn't recommend it.
"The problem is that the whole notion of cloud is that you make silos of capacity look as one," Crenshaw said.
He noted that proprietary vendors want users to choose a single stack for the cloud solution. The alternative is the open approach which can federate across the siloed capacity.
"That's something that is unique to open source, it's so much more scalable and less risky," Crenshaw said. "You really need an open source community to do the integration, as the integration is way beyond the capability of any one vendor to accomplish."
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.