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Red Hat Unwraps Beta of Next Enterprise Linux

Red Hat Tuesday unleashed the first beta of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3, code-named Taroon.

Once ready for general release, Taroon will supercede Red Hat's current Red Hat Enterprise Linux 2.1 product line. The Enterprise Linux line is rooted in Red Hat Advanced Server, which the firm rolled out in March 2002.

Since that time, Advanced Server has spread its wings and tiered into three variants: Enterprise Linux AS (formerly Advanced Server, geared for large departmental and datacenter servers), Enterprise Linux ES (designed for entry-level and departmental server applications), and Enterprise Linux WS (the workstation/desktop environment, geared for client-server deployments, software development environments and targeted ISV client applications).

Now, the Enterprise Linux line has become Red Hat's core operating system, allowing it to take a large stake in the market for mission-critical enterprise computing. The company's original operating system, Red Hat Linux, continues to get updates , but is now geared mainly to hobbyists.

The Taroon beta is currently available in two variants: Enterprise Linux AS and Enterprise Linux WS. Red Hat noted that Enterprise Linux ES has an identical package set to Enterprise Linux AS in Beta 1, and users interested in the ES product should test the AS Beta 1 release.

The AS beta release includes the core operating system and network server packages. It is available for a number of architectures, including: i686/Athlon 32-bit, Intel Itanium2 64-bit, AMD64 64-bit, IBM iSeries and pSeries 64-bit, IBM S/390 31-bit, and IBM zSeries 64-bit.

The WS beta release includes the core operating system and desktop productivity, development, communications and network client packages. It is available for the i686/Athlon 32-bit, Intel Itanium2 64-bit, and AMD64 64-bit architectures.

The beta includes a host of new features. It comes with the 2.4.21 Linux kernel, and a number of scalability enhancements, like Native Posix Threading Library (NPTL), Thread Local Storage and Futex APIs, per-device locks for block IO, and a hyperthreading scheduler.

Other enhancements improve memory management, the development environment, the I/O subsystem, the desktop, serviceability, networking, security and cluster management.