R Red Hat Linux 8.0 has a new C compiler and an associated tool chain. Most of the enhancements of Linux 8.0 over Linux 7.3 are aimed at ease of set-up and installation in the small office environment or for the personal desktop. ed Hat® Linux®, Professional Edition 8.0 is Red Hat’s operating system targeted for small business, Web serving, and the desktop. Many of the feature enhancements from the previous version (7.3) are designed to assist with set-up and installation on desktops, workstations, or servers.
Linux provides a cost-effective, optimal operating environment for an Internet infrastructure using Dell™ PowerEdge™ servers. There are no license fees or per seat fees associated with Red Hat Linux software, which is an important contribution to help lower TCO.
Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 contains a new C Compiler and resulting tool chain. Existing binaries from the 7.x platforms are supported, but binaries generated by the 8.x products are not supported on the 7.x series. The new C compiler is ‘gcc 3.2’.
Enterprise deployments are best served by Red Hat’s Advanced Server product. Advanced Server offers a much higher level of support than does Professional 8.0; please see the Service and Support section for further details.
Linux has come a long way since August 1991, when Linus Torvalds began building an operating system (OS) that eventually became Linux, a full-featured OS that has evolved as a project of programmers worldwide.
Linux is similar, but not identical, to Unix. It runs on a wide variety of hardware, including systems based on Intel, Alpha, PowerPC and other processors. Because of the similarity between Unix and Linux, many organizations are considering a migration from their expensive proprietary RISC systems to the combination of Intel hardware platforms from Dell and Linux software from Red Hat.
The Linux operating system was developed under the GNU General Public License (GPL), making it freely distributable.
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Freely distributable means that the source code for the kernel (the core technology within any operating system) and most software cannot be withheld.
Although Linux initially referred strictly to the kernel, it now also includes a collection of configured software that runs on top of the Linux kernel. These “collections of software” are known as distributions. Currently, a number of vendors, including Red Hat and SuSE, offer distributions of Linux that include various features and enhancements as well as service and support.
Dell has chosen Red Hat as a strategic partner and to distribute Red Hat’s versions of Linux. Red Hat maintains a strictly open source policy for its Linux offerings, which is consistent with Dell’s commitment to industry standards. Through this partnership, Dell provides customers with Red Hat Linux factory-installed on PowerEdge and PowerEdge SC servers. Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 is supported by Dell as a standard OS choice for PowerEdge servers and PowerEdge SC servers. Red Hat Linux is also supported by all currently shipping (as of November 2002) NICs, SCSI RAID controllers, and SCSI storage systems offered by Dell.
Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0, based on the Linux 2.4.18 kernel, is a major version release only by virtue of its new C compiler and the associated tool chain. Most of the enhancements between Linux 7.3 and 8.0 are aimed at the small office environment or the personal desktop. Please see the features table in the next section.
Assisting in the management of Dell PowerEdge servers running Red Hat Linux are tools such as network configuration tools, Red Hat Network for OS change management, user management tools, and hardware viewing tools. These features are elements of the operating system and come ready to use with each factory-installed Red Hat Linux-based server from Dell.
Red Hat has also included some popular Internet applications in Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0:
Apache 2.0 Web Server The Apache Project is a collaborative software development effort aimed at creating a freely available source code implementation of an HTTP (Web) server. Apache Web Server software is widely used by Web server domains.The Apache software is well suited for e-commerce applications, where security and stability are key system requirements.
Red Hat TUX Web Server TUX is kernel-based web server software licensed under the GNU General Public License (GPL). The TUX Web Server serves static web pages, and can do so very efficiently from within the Linux kernel. The TUX Web Server is ideal for development environments, where performance and system response are critical.
Existing users of Red Hat Professional 7.x should upgrade their software via the Red Hat Network software version control and management service. All copies of Red Hat Linux Professional come with a 180-day trial service included with the system, and Dell customers are encouraged to subscribe to this service to gain access to new versions of Red Hat’s software. Dell will not be offering customer kits to upgrade 7.x software to version 8.0.
Target Markets/Applications Dell’s Linux ‘Professional’ - based solutions are targeted at users who want to gain the advantages of the Linux operating system for cost-effective small server applications. Dell™ PowerEdge™ servers with Red Hat Linux can be effectively used as web, firewall, DNS/DHCP, Sendmail, and small database (MySQL) servers and data marts due to the fact that all of these applications are included with the standard distribution at no extra charge.
The 8.0 release of Red Hat Linux is a “community product.” The term “community product” means that while as much support as possible is offered for its deployment, the Linux community is ultimately responsible for the highest level of product support. Dell and Red Hat will jointly attempt to resolve supported customers issues unless a modification to the operating system source code is required. If this occurs, the support issue will be passed over to the Linux community for resolution. Customers requiring higher levels of support in a specific time period should use the Red Hat Linux Advanced Server product.
Features and Benefits of Red Hat Linux The features and benefits of Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 are shown in Table 1 and Table 2.
Generic Features of Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0
Multi-threaded Operating System
Built-in support for symmetric multi-processing (SMP), currently up to eight microprocessors for an Intel-based system
The key customer benefits for Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 are as follow:
Optimized Solutions for Internet Infrastructures Dell PowerEdge servers based on Red Hat Linux provide a variety of solutions for Internet infrastructures in environments that range from small businesses to global enterprises.
Reliable Solutions Linux can run for extended periods of time without having to be rebooted. And because the source code is open, bugs can be fixed quickly and easily without having to wait for proprietary vendors to issue fixes on-schedule.
Software RAID Software RAID configuration at installation helps to provide protection against data loss through disk failure. Software RAID works with a variety of SCSI cards. Red Hat Linux supports RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 5.
Open Source Software Open source software refers to software for which the license requires that its source code be open, extensible and freely re-distributable. Open source software takes advantage of the work of a broad base of development efforts.
Flexibility Linux is highly customizable, enabling fine-tuning and optimization for a specific application/deployment.
Service and Support
Dell provides remote telephone software technical support for Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 through its currently selling DirectLine Plus Service Offering and Premier Enterprise Support Services (PESS). Dell’s DirectLine Plus offers customers 7x24 priority-access support for operating systems that are factory installed or field-installed. Through the Premier Enterprise Support program, Dell offers a tiered service offering to help satisfy the unique needs of server and storage customers across a range of computing environments.
The 8.0 release of Red Hat Linux is a “community product.” The term “community product” means that while as much support as possible is offered for its deployment, the Linux community is ultimately responsible for the highest level of product support. Dell and Red Hat will jointly attempt to resolve supported customers issues unless a modification to the Operating System source code is required. If such a determination is arrived at, the support issue will be passed over to the Linux community for resolution.
Customers requiring higher levels of support in a specific time period should use the Red Hat Linux Advanced Server product.
Premier Enterprise Support
Premier Enterprise Support features tiered packages of services (Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze) to help satisfy the business-critical needs of Dell’s server and storage customers. Since maximizing system uptime is crucial for enterprise customers, many features of Dell’s Premier Enterprise Support Service Tiers Gold and Platinum levels are focused on preventing issues – such as remote monitoring, pre-failure alerting, change notification, and change management.
Other services are focused on rapid resolution to quickly resolve any issues as they occur. Services range from on-site1 service for hardware to remote software and storage support with seamless support for select third party products. Gold and Platinum customers can benefit from engineer-to-engineer support, on-site troubleshooting, on-site engineers, and on-site spares (depending on the options that customers choose).
Platinum Support: For around-the-clock, business-critical environments, Platinum support provides fully integrated and comprehensive custom solutions for all Dell systems installed with strategic operating systems Some of the key program features include: Dedicated Technical Account Manager, On-site hardware Troubleshooting, Customer Training, Seamless Support and a 2-hour on-site response1 and 6-hour repair commitment for hardware issues.
Gold Support: For Linux-, Microsoft® Windows®-, and Novell®-based business-critical systems, Gold support offers a rich suite of high-end services designed to help manage key environments. Some of the key program features include: Seamless Support, Technical Account Manager Team, Customer-Defined Call Priority, and 4-hour on-site response for hardware issues.1, 2
Silver or Bronze Support: For server and storage systems that require basic levels of support, the Silver or Bronze tiers enable customers implementing Red Hat Linux to choose from a variety of services based on their requirements.
Some customers may require software support services on an incident package basis specifically to support their Dell | Red Hat environment. For these customers, Dell Services provides the DirectLine Plus incident packs. DirectLine Plus incident packages are sold in increments of
Red Hat will not offer its collaborative version of DirectLine Plus support services for Red Hat Linux 8.0 through Dell. Those customers needing support beyond Red Hat’s basic 90-day phone / 90-day email support / 180 RH Network basic FTP download / and one advanced resolution, should purchase a DirectLine Plus or PESS contract from Dell.
Dell provides software technical support via telephone free of charge for 30 days to customers who purchase Red Hat Linux Professional 8.0 factory installed on PowerEdge and SC Servers. If customers need advanced software support beyond 30 days (other than basic installation and configuration) they can purchase a DirectLine Plus contract from Dell. DirectLine Plus provides phone support with 8x5 or 24x7 coverage with a guaranteed contact response time of 2 hours for non-critical issues. Please note that customers requiring Enterprise class support for Linux should consider purchasing the Advanced Server product instead of Red Hat Linux Professional version 8.0.
Because Red Hat Linux Professional version 8.0 is a Linux “community” product, not all customer issues may be answered. Dell takes first call on all Linux support questions. If unable to provide the appropriate OS response, Dell will open an incident report to the Linux community via web, 'bugzilla', or RHN channels. Once the problem is resolved through these channels, Dell will close the issue with the customer. The PowerEdge server hardware comes standard with a three year limited warranty3 supplemented with three years of Next Business Day On-Site1 parts replacement and one year of On-Site1 Labor Service.
In addition to its basic 30-day telephone operating system support for Red Hat Linux, Dell offers an enhanced suite of Professional Services, custom integration, and advanced performance computing (high-performance compute clusters, a.k.a. HPCC) to customers. Professional services vary by region. Please refer to the web sites below for more information:
For more information on the Dell | Red Hat alliance, check out the Dell.com web page at:
Dell Services vary from region to region as Dell continues to scale and make consistent service offerings around the globe. The sections below describe those features available by region.
All of the services listed above are available in the US, Canada and Latin America. (NOTE: PESS is provided in English only, with limited Spanish-speaking TAM support available. Latin America is in the process of deploying PESS regionally). In particular, PESS Gold is the best option for a customer requiring immediate, highly trained support technicians. For details on the PESS support tiers, check these web pages:
Dell Services in Europe can provide PESS Gold level advanced software remote resolution support for Dell servers installed with Red Hat Professional, but do NOT offer the DirectLine . In Europe, customers can purchase PESS Silver and Gold level support with 3-year Advanced Software Support that includes 3-advanced remote resolutions for the 3-year service contract life. PESS Gold is the recommended cost-competitive service package for the Red Hat professional customer.
PESS services for Red Hat are currently available in English only but with limited French and German telephone/email support during regular business hours (9 a.m. - 5 p.m. GMT). Details on PESS in Europe can be found at:
http://inside.euro.dell.com/emea/services/support services/enterprise support services/
Dell Professional Services are available in limited regions and are currently in English only. The Dell | Red Hat alliance services selected regions. For more details on Professional Services in Europe:
Support for Red Hat Linux Professional is provided directly from Red Hat support services in the Asia/Pacific region. Customers receive a drop-in-the-box service activation card. These services entitle customers to 90 days of web-based support (http://www.redhat.com/support), 90-days of telephone-based support (includes basic setup and configuration), and 180-days of Red Hat Network subscription services. Additionally, Red Hat’s service provides 1-incident support for an advanced software or configuration resolution.
Dell PESS for Red Hat Linux will become available for the APAC region later this year. Please check the following web site for updates:
Dell Professional Services is currently working to expand consulting and migration services into the region to be available in 2003.
Dell Japan provides PESS Gold level support for servers installed with Red Hat Linux Professional, including 3 remote software resolutions over the 3-year contract period. Customers can also purchase DirectLine Plus service packs in limited availability from Dell Japan.
Japan currently does not offer Professional Services directly from Dell Japan, but are in the process of working with DPS and Red Hat to offer migration and HPCC capabilities.
Updates and service information for Japan is posted at:
Hardware Warranty and Support
Dell PowerEdge servers come with the following standard support:
Three-year limited warranty3 supplemented with three years of Next Business Day on-site1 parts replacement and one year of Next Business Day on-site1 labor
24-hour/7-day Lifetime Telephone Technical Support for troubleshooting and diagnosis of Dell hardware
24-hour/7-day E-support services featuring extensive online support capabilities
Dell PowerEdge SC servers come with the following standard support:
One-year limited warranty3 supplemented with one year of Next Business Day on-site1 parts replacement and one year of Next Business Day on-site1 labor
30-day Getting Started Technical Support Program4
24-hour/7-day One-Year Telephone Technical Support for troubleshooting and diagnosis of Dell hardware
Services vary by region. For more information on the available services in your area, please visit http://www.dell.com/
1 Service may be provided by third-party. Technician will be dispatched if necessary following phone-based troubleshooting. Subject to parts availability and geographical restrictions. Service timing dependent upon time of day call placed to Dell. Subject to terms of service contract. U.S. only.
2 This guarantee does not apply to Directline Plus for Red Hat Linux Advanced Server purchased with a 4 business-hour response time. [FYI – this birdseed is from the Services Boilerplate for ESG.]
3 For a complete copy of our guarantees or limited warranties, please visit http://www.dell.com/us/en/gen/services/service_service_contracts.htm or write to Dell USA L.P., One Dell Way, Round Rock, Texas 78682, Attn: Warranties.
4 30-day telephone support program is at no additional charge to help customers with installation optimization and configuration questions during the critical 30-day period after shipment of PowerEdge systems. This program is available to customers who purchase Novell NetWare®, Microsoft Windows NT Server, Windows 2000 Server, Red Hat Professional, or Red hat Advanced Server with their PowerEdge server from Dell. Support provided after the 30-day Getting Started Program will be for only the Dell hardware. Beyond 30 days from the invoice date, Dell’s DirectLine telephone support service is available for purchase for NOS support.
Dell cannot be responsible for errors in typography or photography.
Dell, PowerVault and PowerEdge are trademarks of Dell Computer Corporation. Red Hat is a registered trademark of Red Hat, Inc. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds. Microsoft and Windows are registered trademarks of Microsoft. Novell is a registered trademark of Novell. Other trademarks and trade names may be used in this document to refer to either the entities claiming the marks and names or their products. Dell disclaims proprietary interest in the marks and names of others.