Red Hat Rolls Out Enterprise Linux 6.4 Beta

Yesterday saw Red Hat announce the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.4 - the next beta release for RHEL 6.

Comprising of a wide range of updates to the current feature set, RHEL 6.4 is reported to offer improved functionality within virtualisation, identity management, productivity tools as well as storage.

Although technically a server operating system, RHEL 6.4 is developed "for optimized performance, stability and flexibility to cater to today's diverse workloads running in physical, virtual and cloud environment." RHEL 6.4 is due to be shipped out around the first quarter of 2013.

However, it's most significant feature is the enhanced Microsoft inter-operability. Providing support for Microsoft Hyper-V Linux drivers as well as interoperability enhancements with Microsoft Exchange, this will allow Microsoft Azure users to run RHEL 6.4 as persistent virtual machines.

"The integration of the Microsoft Hyper-V drivers was a planned activity," explained Senior Manager of Product Marketing at Red Hat, Ron Pacheco. "As is our practice with all aspects of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, we wait for the code (including drivers) to be accepted into the upstream community before they can be introduced into Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.9, and now in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.4."

Microsoft initially contributed the drivers to the mainstream Linux kernel early 2012; with the Linux Foundation reportedly referring to Microsoft as 'one of the larger code contributors to Linux'. A lot of the Microsoft-related work undertaken by Red Hat was done in conjunction with Microsoft.

"We have been working with Microsoft to test the 'upgrade' paths from Microsoft-provided drivers to the drivers integrated into Red Hat Enterprise Linux, as we both want our mutual customers to use what is delivered in Red Hat Enterprise Linux," said Pacheco.

Registered Red Hat users can download the RHEL 6.4 beta now.

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