Red Hat: ARM in Linux Is Not Ready for Prime Time

From the ‘Twist my ARM’ files:

According to some vendors, one of the most exciting new avenues for Linux in 2011 is the ARM architecture.

Ubuntu is all over it and so is HP with their Project Moonshot effort using Calxeda ARM technology. While Ubuntu and HP are optimistic, Red Hat is more…realistic.

I recently had a conversation with Tim Burke, vice president of Linux Engineering at Red Hat – and to make a long story short – his views on ARM are very different than Ubuntu.

“ARM in Linux is not ready for prime time,” Burke said.

However, he did note that Red Hat is helping to lead the effort to get standards for hardware enumeration. They are also working on some ARM scalability issues. At presents he just doesn’t see a fit for ARM in the enterprise. He does however see it as being suited for Fedora – at least for now.

Considering the mission critical systems that Red Hat supports and the need for certifications, I can see where Burke is coming from. ARM might be a possible future for Linux, but the reality is that it’s likely a bit too early for the enterprise. But hey, I’m happy to be proved wrong and it will be very interesting to see what the Calxeda/HP/Ubuntu combination is actually able to deliver in 2012.

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