Red Hat has launched the beta version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 (RHEL 8) for users and developers for testing purpose and getting feedback from them. Red Hat Inc. which is developing RHEL 8 has announced this operating system beta version for public use on November 14, 2018.
Four year ago when Red Hat had launched the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 (RHEL 7) redefined operating system, it changed the paradigm of open source. Lot of changes have been made since then.
RHEL 8 comes with new features and improvement as compared to its predecessor RHEL 7. Red Hat has developed and introduced new features and improvements in RHEL 8 operating system for not only addressing the requirements of traditional IT Data Center also for requirements of now days booming Cloud and containerised infrastructure.
Image: RHEL 8 Beta login screen
Below are the major features and improvement which RHEL 8 contains:
- RHEL 8 is based on Red Hat community Linux Fedora 28 release May 2018 with upstream kernel 4.18 as a foundation which provides users with a secure, stable and consistent foundation across hybrid cloud and Data Center deployments with tools needed to support all levels of workloads.
- RHEL 8 Support below CPU Architectures:
- AMD and Intel 64-bit architectures
- The 64-bit ARM architecture
- IBM Power Systems, Little Endian
- IBM Z
- GNOME 3.28 is as default GUI in RHEL 8 with default display server Wayland though the traditional display server the X.Org server will still be available in this RHEL distribution.
- Application Streams a new concept which introduced in RHEL 8 it eases in upgrading packages in userspace without fiddling the core of operating system packages. Like this without waiting for next major update of operating system you can get the most up-to-date programs packages thus it won’t effect the operating system stability. Example: Developers can work with the latest version of the MariaDB, MySQL DBMS clone, while production keeps using the old stable edition of MariaDB.
- Red Hat also has updated YUM package manager (YUM version 4). In earlier RHEL operating system YUM used to support modules. But now in RHEL 8 it is based on DNF package manager which capable the YUM to provides support for modular contents, increased performance, and a well-designed stable application programming interface (API) for integration with tooling.
- RHEL 8 support IPVLAN which is responsible to make communication for containers network running on hosted virtual machines, along with a new TCP/IP stack with Bandwidth and Round-trip propagation time (BBR) congestion control, which enables higher performance, minimized latency and decreased packet loss for Internet-connected services like streaming video or hosted storage.
- As importance of security in mind RHEL 8 code has become more harden with security fixes so that it can meet Government and different Private industries standard. Also RHEL 8 come with OpenSSL 1.1.1 and TLS 1.3. System-wide Cryptographic Policies are also included. Thus no further specific security fine tuning is required for application(s) for meeting cryptographic compliance.
- Linux Containers support were introduce in RHEL 7 so now it is official supported in RHEL 8 as well. These below tools has now introduced for managing Linux containers by Red Hat in RHEL 8:
- RHEL 8 Composer enable to build and deploy custom images across the hybrid cloud. With its straightforward graphical interface, you’ll be able to make minimal footprint VMs to customized, special-purpose images for everything from a traditional server to the cloud and back again.
- Cockpit project is strongly integrated with systemd. The systemd DBus APIs drive the services and logs pages, as well as providing the majority of the functionality of the system information page. Cockpit is pre-installed with RHEL 8 you need to activate it only for first time for accessing it from browser with below command from root privileged:
systemctl enable --now cockpit.socket
Cockpit give flexibility to system administrator to access and manage Linux resources such as containers, administer storage or users, configure networks, and inspect log files from web interface.
Image: RHEL 8 Beta Cockpit web page
I suggest you to refer officially Red Hat documents for learning more details of RHEL 8 features and improvement. Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8 Beta version is ready for testing you may download it from Red Hat official site and create the test lab in your environment.
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