Thursday Dec 05, 2013

Announcing Oracle Linux 6.5 including the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3

We're happy to announce the immediate availability of Oracle Linux 6 Update 5, the fifth update release for Oracle Linux 6. You can find the individual RPM packages in our public yum repository now; ISO installation images will be freely available for download from the Oracle Software Delivery Cloud soon.

Some highlights in this release include:

  • DTrace support has now been integrated in the default kernel and now supports user-space tracing of DTrace-enabled applications via the USDT provider.
  • Linux Containers (LXC) are now supported in the UEK R3.
  • The Btrfs file system now supports the send and receive subcommands that allow you to record the differences between two subvolumes, which can either be snapshots of the same subvolume or parent and child subvolumes. Btrfs now also supports replacing devices without unmounting or otherwise disrupting access to the file system.
  • The OpenFabrics Enterprise Distribution (OFED) 2.0 stack has been added, supporting a wide range of Infiniband protocols.
  • Paravirtualization support has been enabled for Oracle Linux guests on Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V or Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V.

For more details on these and other new features and changes in Oracle Linux 6 Update 5, please consult the Release Notes in the Oracle Linux Product Documentation Library.

Oracle Linux 6 Update 5 is the first Oracle Linux distribution that installs the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 (based on mainline Linux 3.8) by default on systems based on the x86_64 architecture. The UEK R3 has already been released and announced for previous Oracle Linux 6 versions via a dedicated yum repository in October. The Red Hat compatible kernel is also included for compatibility.

For a detailed list of notable changes and improvements in UEKR3, please check the Release Notes for Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3.

As usual, Oracle Linux can be downloaded, used and distributed free of charge and updates and errata are freely available. For support, you are free to decide which of your systems you want to obtain a support subscription for, and at what level each system should be supported. This makes Oracle Linux an ideal choice for your development, testing and production systems - you decide which support coverage is the best for each of your systems individually, while keeping all of them up-to-date and secure.

Read the press release.

Monday Oct 21, 2013

Announcing Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 for Oracle Linux

We are excited to announce the general availability of the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 for Oracle Linux 6. The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 (UEK R3) is Oracle's third major supported release of its heavily tested and optimized Linux kernel for Oracle Linux 6 on the x86_64 architecture.

UEK R3 is based on mainline Linux version 3.8.13. Some notable highlights of this release include:

  • Inclusion of DTrace for Linux into the kernel (no longer a separate kernel image). DTrace for Linux now supports probes for user-space statically defined tracing (USDT) in programs that have been modified to include embedded static probe points
  • Production support for Linux containers (LXC) which were previously released as a technology preview
  • 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, device statistics)
  • Improved support for Control Groups (cgroups) 
  • TCP fast open (TFO) can speed up the opening of successive TCP connections between two endpoints
  • FUSE file system performance improvements on NUMA systems
  • Support for the Intel Ivy Bridge (IVB) processor family
  • Integration of the OpenFabrics Enterprise Distribution (OFED) 2.0 stack, supporting a wide range of Infinband protocols including updates to Oracle's Reliable Datagram Sockets (RDS)
  • Numerous driver updates in close coordination with our hardware partners
UEK R3 uses the same versioning model as the mainline Linux kernel version. Unlike in UEK R2 (which identifies itself as version "2.6.39", even though it is based on mainline Linux 3.0.x), "uname" returns the actual version number (3.8.13).

For further details on the new features, changes and any known issues, please consult the Release Notes.

The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 and related packages can be installed using the yum package management tool on Oracle Linux 6 Update 4 or newer, both from the Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN) and our public yum server. Please follow the installation instructions in the Release Notes for a detailed description of the steps involved.

The kernel source tree will also available via the git source code revision control system from https://oss.oracle.com/git/?p=linux-uek3-3.8.git

If you would like to discuss your experiences with Oracle Linux and UEK R3, we look forward to your feedback on our public Oracle Linux Forum.

Thursday Aug 29, 2013

Beta 1 of Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 now available

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.

We've created a dedicated public beta test discussion forum — please join us and share your observations and impressions there!

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