One key reason customers choose Oracle
Linux is the investment Oracle makes in optimizing Linux for demanding
workloads. Part of this work includes extensive testing for I/O intensive
workloads, like the Oracle Database. A
common test used at Oracle to measure I/O throughput and performance is the
Oracle Orion Calibration Tool, which simulates the I/O workloads of an Oracle
Database. Recently, the Oracle Linux
team discovered a significant lag in I/O performance, which was later traced to
a feature in the Linux kernel, Transparent Huge Pages (also known as THP). During these tests, our engineering teams
discovered THP introduced a 30% performance degradation in I/O throughput. When Transparent Huge Pages were removed from
the kernel, performance values returned to their expected levels.
Our engineers have been working with the
community to identify the root cause of this performance problem, which also
impacts other projects, such as Hadoop. Oracle’s
kernel engineers have traced the performance issues with Transparent Huge Pages
to its use of swappable hugepages. Prior
to THP, hugepages were not swappable. It
appears the overhead generated by this implementation is the root cause of the deterioration
seen in performance when the feature is enabled (compiled) in the kernel. Our kernel engineers are working on several
changes to the code which they believe will improve performance with THP, but
the final resolution will take time to develop, test and release.
Due to the impact this feature has on
performance with applications like the Oracle Database and the timing of a
final fix, Oracle Linux will disable Transparent Huge Pages in the Unbreakable
Enterprise Kernel, beginning with Quarterly Update 5 for the Unbreakable
Enterprise Kernel, Release 2 (version 2.6.39-400.209.1). To maintain binary compatibility with the
Red Hat distribution, the Red Hat Compatible kernel will be left as is, with
Transparent Huge Pages enabled. In
addition, the Oracle Database team has released an alert recommending all customers disable THP in
all Linux systems running RAC and even those systems running single instances,
due to instability. Please note that THP is not used by the Oracle Database, the recommendation is to use huge pages. Additional information for huge pages can be found in your Oracle Database documentation or on My Oracle Support.
Our engineers will continue to work with
others in the community on a final resolution to the performance issues seen
with Transparent Huge Pages. Once a fix is available, we will re-enable this feature in the Unbreakable Enterprise
We are pleased to announce the availability of the 5th quarterly update update release for the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 2 (version 2.6.39-400.209.1) for Oracle Linux 5 and Oracle Linux 6. This release includes driver updates as well as a consolidation of bug fixes and security updates.
Notable changes include:
Xsigo virtual host adapter and network drivers to support Oracle SDN (Software Defined Network), previously known as Xsigo Fabric Accelerator.
LSI Fusion-MPT SAS 3.0 driver to support up to 12 Gb/s host controllers.
XEN improvements, such as the indirect-descriptor feature, which increases throughput and reduces latency for block I/O.
Binary RPMs can be downloaded and installed using yum from the Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN) as well as Oracle's public-yum server. The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel is installed and booted by default on Oracle Linux. See this article on Oracle Technology Network for details on how to install and update the kernel.
We are happy to announce the availability of Beta 1of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 for Oracle Linux 6. The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 (UEK R3) is Oracle's third major release of its heavily tested and optimized operating system kernel for Oracle Linux 6 on the x86_64 architecture. It is based on the mainline Linux version 3.8.13.
The 3.8.13-13 release also updates device drivers and includes bug and security fixes. Some notable improvements in functionality and new features include:
Numerous stability and scalability enhancements
Inclusion of DTrace 0.4 for Linux into the kernel (no longer a separate kernel image). DTrace for Linux now now supports probes for user-space statically defined tracing (USDT) in programs that have been modified to include embedded static probe points.
Btrfs file system improvements (subvolume-aware quota groups, cross-subvolume reflinks, btrfs send/receive to transfer file system snapshots or incremental differences, file hole punching, hot-replacing of failed disk devices)
Improved support for Control Groups (cgroups) and Linux containers (LXC).
The ext4 file system can now store the content of a small file inside the inode (inline_data).
TCP fast open (TFO) can speed up the opening of successive TCP connections between two endpoints.
The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 can be installed on Oracle Linux 6 Update 4 or newer, running either the Red Hat compatible kernel or a previous version of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel. The UEKR3 beta kernel packages and supporting userland utilities can be installed using the yum package management tool from the public-yum server.
For installation instructions and more details on the new features, changes and any known issues, please consult the
Release Notes found on our public beta site.
Oracle Openworld San Francisco is only 40 days away so it is time to plan for your sessions and activities. This year's event will be full of excitement with Americas Cup and the Oracle Linux Penguin racing to bring you new and insightful content!. In this blog, we will talk about the key Oracle Linux sessions, don't forget to add them to your schedule in advance because the Linux sessions get full very quickly.
General Session: Oracle Linux—State of the Penguin (GEN9450)
Monday , Sep 23, 10:45 AM in Westin San Francisco - Metropolitan II
In this session, the Oracle Linux executive team will discuss the strategy, latest product updates, roadmap, key partnerships, competitive landscape, community engagements, and what’s next for Oracle Linux. The session is an opportunity to learn—from the source—the decisions driving Linux development at Oracle. If you are interested in running Linux for your mission-critical applications, especially Oracle workloads, you should not miss this session.
Managing Your Oracle Linux Environment (CON9452)
Monday, 9/23, 4:45pm PT, Westin
This session will discuss common methods customers use to manage their Oracle Linux environment, including tips and tricks for patching and provisioning. Whether you prefer to leverage system tools such as YUM with local repositories, open source projects such as Spacewalk, or a full-scale system management solution such as Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c, this session will cover all the different tools available to manage Oracle Linux.
Oracle Linux Technical Deep Dive: Reliability, Availability, and Scalability (Session ID: CON9531)
Tuesday , Sep 24, 10:30 AM in Westin San Francisco - Franciscan
This technical session outlines the key features and enhancements in Oracle Linux, including file systems, Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel, performance enhancements, and high availability. It shows you how Oracle Clusterware can be used with Oracle Linux to make your Linux environment highly available and how you can use it to monitor and manage a variety of applications, such as Web servers or MySQL databases running on your Oracle Linux system.
Why Is Oracle Linux the Best Linux for Running Oracle Database? (CON9543)
Tuesday , Sep 24, 3:45 PM in Westin San Francisco - Franciscan II
In this session, you will hear from Bank of America as well as from Oracle experts about why Oracle Linux is the best Linux for running Oracle Database workloads. You’ll learn about tools for easy installations, including Oracle VM Templates and validated RPM, and how Bank of America is taking advantage of Oracle Database running on Oracle Linux to minimize the downtime of mission-critical databases, improve performance, and reduce cost.
Oracle Linux Troubleshooting: Diagnostics and Best Practices (CON9458)
Wed, 9/25, 10:15am Westin
In this session, learn about the best methods for tuning Linux and get tips, tricks, and techniques for assessing and troubleshooting your Oracle Linux systems. Understand the options available with Oracle Linux, including best practices for configuration and tuning and the introduction of new features for dynamic and static tracing with the DTrace feature of Oracle Linux. Join the Oracle Linux product experts who understand your environment and the tools to keep your data center operating at maximum efficiency.
If you are a developer, you may also want to join this session:
Using Oracle Linux As Your Development Platform (CON9459)
Monday , Sep 23, 3:15 PM in Marriott Marquis - Golden Gate C3
In this session, you will learn about tools available from Oracle that enable you to create a powerful, feature-rich development environment with Oracle Linux. Oracle experts describe their experience and recommended best practices for using familiar tools shipped with Oracle Linux, such as the gcc C/C++ compiler, the gdb debugger, and various tracing tools.
This is just a sampling of the many sessions you have to choose from. We'll talk more about other sessions you can attend, including hands on labs, and demos in upcoming blog articles. Until then, feel free to have a look through the Content Catalog (search on "Oracle Linux" or other related terms to see what piques your interest!).
Stay tuned for more updates as we count down to Oracle Openworld 2013.
Oracle today announced that customers and partners continue to rapidly adopt Oracle Linux to increase the scalability, reliability and performance of their critical applications and systems.
to Gartner (March 2013), Oracle Linux placed in the top three in the
Linux server operating system market, growing more than 80 percent
year-over-year in 2012, which outpaced the overall Linux server
operating system market growth(1).
Recent important announcements with Dell, Microsoft, and Salesforce.com, around support for Oracle Linux, further demonstrate Oracle Linux momentum with partners.
“Epsilon offers a broad array of data-driven, multichannel marketing
solutions for many of the biggest brands in the world. Our information
systems have been experiencing substantial growth year-over-year, with
increased demand for real-time reporting, and high performance
transaction processing. To enable customers to interact with a brand in a
more dynamic real-time manner, we knew our infrastructure had to be
comprehensive, well integrated and scalable. With our Oracle Exadata
Database Machines running Oracle Linux, we are achieving transactional
processing speeds that were previously not attainable. Oracle’s
technologies and world-class support have been instrumental in enabling
us to deliver new value-add services and greater efficiency for
clients,” said Jeff White, vice president, technology, strategic
database services at Epsilon.
We're pleased to announce that the fourth quarterly update release of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 2 (Version 2.6.39-400.109) for Oracle Linux 5 and 6 has been published. This release includes driver updates as well as fixes for bugs and security issues.
Binary RPMs can be downloaded and installed using yum from the Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN) as well as our public-yum server. The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel is installed and booted by default on Oracle Linux. See this article on the Oracle Technology Network for details on how to install and update it.
We will be part of OTN Latin America Tour 2013! You can hear about the latest product developments, features, tips about Oracle Linux and Oracle VM and ask questions to local experts. Here are the cities and the dates when we visit:
North: Colombia 12/7 Ecuador 15/7 Guatemala 17/7 Panama 22/7 Costa Rica 24/7 Mexico 26/7
South: Chile 01/08 Peru 03/08 Uruguay 06/08 Argentina 08/08 Brazil 10/08
Check the event page (in Spanish or Portuguese ) for more details and register for these events.
LinuxCon Japan is the premiere Linux conference in Asia that brings
together a unique blend of core developers, administrators, users,
community managers and industry experts. It is designed not only to
encourage collaboration but to support future interaction between Japan
and other Asia Pacific countries and the rest of the global Linux
community. The conference includes presentations, tutorials, birds of a
feather sessions, keynotes, sponsored mini-summits. LinuxCon Japan will
be showcasing Oracle Linux in following sessions, as well as Technology showcase.
Our team will be at Kiosk #1- Data Integrity: Preventing Silent Data Corruption with Oracle Linux
EMC and Oracle have partnered since 1995, helping over
70,000 customers optimize their Oracle software on EMC virtual infrastructure. One of those partnerships had contributed to
development and enhancement of data integrity features. Data corruption can go unnoticed and recovery
is difficult and costly, or even impossible. The EMC and Oracle Data Integrity
solution protects mission critical application information from corruption and
eliminates potential costs and downtime. This is made possible based on tight
integration with the T10 PI standard (previously known as Data Integrity
Field or DIF), which prevents silent data corruption, ensuring that incomplete
and incorrect data cannot overwrite good data.
Visit us at booth #316 to receive Oracle Linux/Oracle VM DVD Kit, collateral about Data Integrity as well as other goodies.
We will also showcase Oracle VM Storage Connect: The Ease of Managing and Provisioning Storage in Kiosk 2.
Each day we receive inquiries from Oracle customers who are interested in migrating from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) to Oracle Linux. As a result, we hosted a webcast to provide additional information for customers who are considering migration and there are a few key points from the webcast I would like to share.
First, I believe all Oracle customers benefit from using Oracle Linux for their Oracle workloads. Oracle Linux is the corporate Linux standard for all development groups at Oracle. The Oracle products you use are developed on Oracle Linux. This development standard creates a natural synergy between Oracle Linux and the Oracle application stack. Oracle Linux receives over 128,000 hours of testing from Oracle products, including extensive regression testing, while SLES receives only basic installation testing as an operating system.
Oracle Linux subscriptions also offer tremendous value. With Oracle Linux Basic and Premier Support subscriptions you receive 24x7 support, 365 days per year with unlimited incidents. Compared to SLES, Oracle Linux can significantly reduce your operating expenses which translates directly to your bottom line. Let's take, as an example, a 4-socket system hosting several virtual machines with 24x7 support:
Oracle Linux Basic Support Subscription
SLES Priority , 4-socket, Virtual Subscription
$1,199 annually (per server)
$3,878 annually (per server)
As you can see in the table, the SLES Priority Subscription list price is $3,878 annually, per server. For Oracle Linux, the equivalent Basic subscription would be $1,199, about 69% less. If you had 100 servers in your data center, this would be an annual savings of $267,000! In addition, the Oracle Linux Basic and Premier Subscriptions include solutions for high availability and system management, at no additional charge. To receive these features with SLES, you must purchase additional extension subscriptions per server. Using the previous example, for the SUSE Linux High Availability extension you will pay an additional $1,398 for each 4-socket server in the cluster, per year. This now represents a 77% savings with Oracle Linux. If you want to use their system management tools, there is a separately priced extension. As you can see from the example, the SUSE extension-based pricing model quickly adds up. With Oracle Linux, our pricing is straightforward and subscriptions include more features, providing greater value for you.
There are also features you will only find with Oracle Linux. For example, what if I were to tell you Oracle Linux provides all bug and security errata on our public yum repositories and it is free, would you be interested? With Oracle Linux, you receive:
All source code, including changelogs, for free. No subscription required.
The ability to freely redistribute without a requirement to modify copyrights, trademarks, or sign additional agreements
Freedom from restrictive support term requirements to cover all systems with subscriptions. Oracle Linux support is only required for systems that you intend to receive support services for. Systems that are static, and don't need support (testing, development, etc.) do not have to be covered by a subscription.
With SLES, you can download the product under a 60-day evaluation, but after 60 days you'll need a subscription if you wish to receive any further updates to the software or to access the source for those updates. You will not have access to the changelogs for the source and if you want to distribute you will need to remove all trademarks, trade dress and logos before doing so. In addition, depending on your buying program, you may be required to cover every instance of SLES with a subscription, regardless of whether you require support for that system.
There are also unique features for Oracle applications which are offered only with Oracle Linux. One example is Oracle Database Smart Flash Cache. Introduced originally with Oracle 11g Release 2, Oracle Database Smart Flash Cache provides the ability to extend the database buffer cache without adding additional main memory by expanding to second level cache on flash memory. This ability to leverage flash improves Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) environments by improving transaction throughput and application response times. Oracle Linux is the only Linux distribution with support for this feature.
Also, have you ever considered what the actual cost is for system downtime in your data center? Every data center schedules maintenance for production environments and for every maintenance window needed, an administrator must coordinate with multiple groups to plan and schedule downtime. When you consider large systems, like the Oracle database, the man-hours needed to coordinate, schedule and implement maintenance updates quickly add up. What if I told you Oracle Linux Premier Support subscriptions include Ksplice, a service for installing kernel updates without requiring a system reboot. Ksplice eliminates many of the common maintenance scenarios which result in a system restart, allowing administrators to keep up to date with the latest kernel errata, without bringing down the server.
Finally, let's end by talking about support. As everyone knows, Linux is open source and when you choose to purchase subscriptions for Linux, you are buying access to a vendor's knowledge and expertise. With Oracle Linux, customers have access to the best support professionals in the industry, who not only understand the operating system but they also understand the Oracle applications running on it. You will spend less time being shuffled from vendor to vendor when you have a critical issue, producing quicker resolutions for your production systems.
I have highlighted several key reasons why you should consider a migration from SLES to Oracle Linux and I encourage you to review the materials we have available on the Migration Made Easy web site, where you will find additional tips and guides to get you started. If you have additional questions or you are ready to talk about your migration, please contact us for more information.
Are you looking to deploy MySQL-based applications with Oracle Linux and Oracle VM either on-premise or in the cloud?
Are you in Europe?
Join us to learn how you can reduce costs and improve business agility while achieving the highest levels of MySQL scalability, security and uptime and hear about benefits of using Oracle Linux and Oracle VM for your infrastructure.
Everyone knows a good inspector is crucial when buying a home or looking for clues in a "whodunit". And now you also have an "inspector" for your Linux kernel!
Today Oracle released a new tool called the Ksplice Inspector enabling Linux users to analyze kernel updates available for their Linux kernel. With so many kernel updates released, it can be difficult to keep track. At Oracle, we monitor kernels on a daily basis and provide bug and security updates administrators can apply without a system reboot. To help out, the Ksplice team at Oracle has produced the Ksplice Inspector, a web tool to show you the updates Ksplice can apply to your kernel with zero downtime.
Tweet Chat with Oracle Executive, Wim Coekaerts on all thing Linux
When : Thursday, April 11 at 1
Senior Vice President of Linux and Virtualization Engineering, Wim Coekaerts,
on Thursday, April 11 at 1 p.m. PT for an hour of tweets about all things
Please submit your questions on Twitter by using #AskOracleExec. Wim will be responding to questions using the @ORCL_Linux Twitter handle.
Wim Coekaerts is the Senior
Vice President of Linux and Virtualization Engineering for Oracle. He is
responsible for Oracle's complete desktop to data center virtualization
product line as well. Mr. Coekaerts
joined Oracle in 1995.
We sat down with Monica Kumar, Senior Director, Oracle Linux, Oracle Virtualization, and MySQL Product Marketing, to discuss the latest update on Oracle Linux.
Q. What are the latest Oracle Linux
A. Oracle Linux 5.9 and Oracle Linux
6.4 represent the latest releases of Oracle Linux. These releases are built on top of Oracle Linux 5 and 6 respectively and
include updates supporting new hardware and driver features, as well as bug
fixes and security updates. For additional details, please see the 5.9 release notes and 6.4 release
Q. Why would customers want to
update their Oracle Linux systems to the latest release? What advantages will
it give them?
A. Updates play a critical role
in the overall lifecycle of an operating system release. An update release provides an opportunity for customers to leverage new
hardware features as well as apply critical bug fixes and security
updates. Oracle Linux 5.9 is also a
consolidation of previously released errata published since the release of 5.8
– and the same holds true for 6.4. As part of Oracle Linux, we also offer an
innovative and modern kernel – Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel. The
combination of Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel with the latest bug fixes and new hardware support helps improve
performance, enhance stability and enable systems to remain secure.
Q. Why do customers choose Oracle
Linux? What do they get from Oracle Linux that they couldn't get by using
RHEL or SUSE or a non-commercially supported distribution?
A. Oracle Linux offers many
benefits. Key benefits include:
Latest innovations (with tracking mainline, optimizations from Oracle Engineered
Systems, and Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel is the culmination of
this technology excellence, offering enhanced performance, reliability and
a more modern Linux distribution), as well as unique features such as
Ksplice, DTrace, and support for popular file systems including ocfs2
besides the others.
Deployment best practices: over 100,000 hours of QA/day using Oracle
Linux – most tested distribution with enterprise workloads and over 160
world-class Linux support in 145 countries; by far the widest and largest
support network over Red Hat or SUSE
Q. What does Oracle give back to the
Linux kernel community?
Linux kernel development is focused on working with Linus and the mainline
kernel community, where we, like other Linux distribution vendors, contribute
significant amounts. Over time, those mainline development projects
trickle down into an OS distribution like Oracle Linux 6 through Unbreakable
Enterprise Kernel which is a great vehicle – and how we introduce new
Linux kernel features into Oracle Linux and provide it to customers.Oracle has a long history of developing
open source projects and working with the Linux kernel community. We are active contributors to many features
found in the mainline kernel today, including OCFS2, Btrfs, NFS, XEN, to name
just a few. In addition, our business
model for Oracle Linux is to focus on providing the best operating system for
mission critical workloads, and contributing the work we do back to the
mainline community. Our git repository for
the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel is publicly available on oss.oracle.com/git so anyone can see our development work and
our contributions. In addition, we make
Oracle Linux freely available, including all of our errata, whether you have a
support subscription or not.
See this link
for more on Oracle’s contributions to Linux.
Q. Why is Oracle Linux better for customers than using the most
current version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux? What's the value for customers?
A. Oracle Linux including the Unbreakable
Enterprise Kernel is developed to provide high performance and stability for
mission-critical applications. Users
benefit from the innovations and improvements occurring in the mainline Linux
community, which we deliver rapidly with Oracle Linux. In addition, Oracle Linux is the most well
tested distribution for enterprise workloads, especially Oracle workloads. We
conduct over 100,000 hours/day of testing at Oracle using Oracle Linux. Additionally, support of Oracle’s Engineered
Systems plus the enterprise application knowledge that we have, is unmatched by
The technical support we provide
with Oracle Linux also includes important bug fixes that Red Hat may choose not
to release. For our customers, these
fixes are critical and it is one of the many reasons they choose Oracle
Linux. In addition, with capabilities like
zero-downtime kernel updates through Ksplice, they receive features that are
not offered by Red Hat.
Q. What is being planned for the
next release and what is the predicted timing of the next release?
A. Oracle continues to focus on
features which improve performance and the innovations found in the mainline
Linux community. We are currently
working on the next generation of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel for Oracle
We expect update releases for both Oracle
Linux 5 and Oracle Linux 6 and a new release of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel in calendar year 2013.
If you want to know more about Oracle Linux, check these resources.
The Oracle mainline Linux kernel team lead by James Morris works as part of the Linux
kernel community to develop new features and maintain existing code. It is globally distributed and includes leading core kernel developers and industry veterans.
They now have their own blog, to share some insights about recent Linux developments with you. Quoting from James' introduction:
In this blog I'll be discussing new and interesting happenings with the team. There'll be some technical deep dives and contributed posts from team members. The primary audiences are technical Oracle Linux users and the wider Linux community.