Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 to Feature Btrfs

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From the ‘Goodbye EXT4?’ files:

For the last several years, I’ve been asking Red Hat when Btrfs would land in Red Hat powered Linux distributions. Now I know the answer.

Tim Burke, Vice-President of Linux Engineering at Red Hat, told me that currently Btrfs is still considered to be a tech preview in the recently releases RHEL 6.3 update. He added that Red Hat is currently focusing its Btrfs efforts on RHEL 7, where the Btrfs filesytem will be a more integrated component.

This is good news.

Red Hat’s enterprise embrace of Btrfs has been a bit slower than other enterprise Linux distros. SUSE has been providing a supported Btrfs implementation since SLES 11 SP2, which was released in March of this year. Btrfs provides enhances rollback and snapshotting features over EXT4, though comparative performance could potentially be a problem. If Red Hat is focused on that problem for RHEL 7, we could be seeing Btrfs as a new default alongside Ext (which was the plan all along wasn’t it?).

The Btrfs world has had some recent transitions too of course, Chris Mason (founder of Btrfs) has left Oracle – though he remains the leading figure in the Btrfs development world. Though Btrfs started off as an Oracle project, it enjoys the support of a wide number of vendors and developers today – proof positive once again that the open source model works.

**UPDATE** As the GREAT Wim Coekert, Linux Overlord as Oracle, all around great person and Ping Pong player extraordinaire, has reminded me, Oracle Linux also supports Btrfs.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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