Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) today announced the release of Red Hat Network Satellite 5.3, the first release of the systems management tool built from the Spacewalk open source project.
Spacewalk is an effort that Red Hat started last year at its Red Hat Summit in Boston and has been working on ever since. The basic idea behind Spacewalk was to have an open source Red Hat Linux system management app project as an evolution of Red Hat’s proprietary Network Satellite (RHN) .
When I spoke with Red Hat in December of 2008, they told me that the plan was to have the generally available version of Network Satellite built from the Spacewalk project by some point in 2009. Here we are.
In my opinion, one of the biggest issues that Red Hat was dealing with at the Spacewalk project revolved around database issues. Red Hat Network Satellite, as I understand it, needs an Oracle database. Developers have been working on open source PostgreSQL database compatibility, but it’s not quite done from what I can tell.
The latest Spacewalk 0.6 release includes PostgreSQL support from a code infrastructure perspective, though the release notes indicate that it does not yet work.
From a new functionality perspective, version 5.3 of Red Hat Network Satellite now supports both KVM and Xen virtualization technologies. This makes a whole lot of sense to me. Virtualization is an item that all systems management tool must have today as enterprises deploy both physical and virtual instances of their operating systems.