The popular Linux distribution, Fedora 13, has been released to its final beta and is chock full of features for enterprise use. Code-named Goddard, the beta version was released on Tuesday with the final version slated for May 18.
It is raining updated Linux distros these days. Canonical is readying its next long-term support (LTS) version of Ubuntu, 10.04, coming April 29. (Network World will soon have a full review of it. Watch the Open Source Subnet home page or this blog for that). Fedora, the FOSS version of Red Hat's distro, follows the March release of Red Hat latest commercial version, too, Enterprise Linux 5.5.
The contributors to Fedora have built in many a feature to please the enterprise user who prefers a FOSS distro over a commercial one. Highlights include:
- Dogtag Certificate System -- a Certificate Authority for certificate lifecycle management including key archival, OCSP and smartcard management
- Support for KVM virtualization including
- KVM Stable PCI Addresses -- lets guest maintain a PCI address as other guests are configured or moved
- Virt Shared Network Interface -- enables guest to share the NIC
- Virtx2apic -- for improving the performance of the virtual guest
- VhostNet -- Enable kernel acceleration for kvm networking
- VirtioSerial -- Expose multiple ports to the guest
- NFS Client IPv6 -- Support for mounting NFS servers over IPv6
- Zarafa Outlook Sharing -- an open source alternative to Microsoft Exchange that includes e-mail, calendaring, all the usual basic groupware features.
- A command-line network manager tool (kills the GUI).
- A much improved file system manager that even allows for rollbacks of entire file system states (The Fedora Team suggests that this will make Fedora an improved choice for your dev/test systems).
Fedora 13 also includes updates to GNOME, Firefox, the Linux kernel, KDE. It includes Python 3 and an improved Python debugger.
As for end users, Distrowatch notes that 13 includes "a universe of new features" for them beyond the GNOME/KDE desktop enhancements. These include automatic print driver installation; backup software, a Twitter client, a Simple Scan scanning utility; enhanced iPod functionality and " experimental 3D graphics support extended to free Nouveau driver for NVIDIA cards."
The beta is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions.
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