Red Hat has announced the general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 with new automation capabilities designed to limit IT complexity while enhancing security.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 offers new automation capabilities designed to limit IT complexity while enhancing workload security and performance for traditional and cloud-native applications. This provides a powerful, flexible operating system backbone to address enterprise IT needs across physical servers, virtual machines and hybrid, public and multi-cloud footprints.
From traditional physical servers and virtual machines to next-generation cloud and container services, the operating system serves as a critical linchpin in connecting deployment footprints across the enterprise. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 acts as this keystone by pairing open source innovation with enterprise-grade stability, providing a foundation for digital transformation while still maintaining existing systems and workloads.
As threats to IT infrastructure evolve, enterprises require more security innovation in their software stack to help prevent breaches and more proactively manage vulnerabilities. This innovation starts at the operating system level, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 brings to bear new and enhanced features designed to foster a more secure production environment for mission-critical workloads, both cloud-native and traditional. This includes:
- Updated audit capabilities to help simplify how administrators filter the events logged by the audit system, gather more information from critical events and to interpret large numbers of records.
- USB Guard, a feature that allows for greater control over how plug-and-play devices can be used by specific users to help limit both data leaks and data injection.
- Enhanced container security functionality with full support for using SELinux with OverlayFS helps secure the underlying file system and provides the ability to use docker and use namespaces together for fine-grained access control.
Modern business applications require more bandwidth and increased storage, placing a performance strain on traditional operating systems and hardware. Engineered to meet the needs of organizations seeking to both modernize and optimize their enterprise IT infrastructure, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 offers new features designed to improve the performance of both networking and storage. New features include:
- Support for NVMe Over Fabric helps to provide customers with increased flexibility and reduced overhead when accessing high performance NVMe storage devices located in the data center on both Ethernet or Infiniband fabric infrastructures.
- General enhancements to Red Hat Enterprise Linux’s performance when deployed on the public cloud, highlighted by decreased boot times to better enable mission-critical applications to start sooner, and support for the Elastic Network Adapter (ENA) on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to enable new network capabilities.
Linux Containers and Red Hat Enterprise Linux Atomic Host
Linux containers present an evolution in how businesses develop, deploy, and manage modern applications, helping enterprises scale to new levels of operational efficiency, speed application development and drive increased flexibility in managing application life cycles. Based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4, the latest version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux Atomic Host further refines enterprise-grade Linux containers with enhancements that include:
- Improved security without sacrificing performance, thanks to integrated support for SELinux and OverlayFS, as well as full support for the overlay2 storage graph driver.
- Full support for package layering with rpm-ostree, providing a means of adding packages like monitoring agents and drivers to the host operating system.
- The introduction of LiveFS as a Technology Preview, which enables users to install security updates and layer packages without a reboot.
Management and automation
With datacenter footprints that span from bare-metal to the cloud, the complexity associated with controlling IT environments continues to increase. Complementing the capabilities of Red Hat Satellite and automation via Ansible Tower, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 introduces Red Hat Enterprise Linux System Roles as a Technology Preview. System Roles provide a common management interface across all major versions of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, enabling an automated workflow via Ansible automation to be created once and used across large, heterogeneous Red Hat Enterprise Linux deployments without additional modifications.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux for multiple architectures
Red Hat remains committed to providing customer choice when it comes to datacenter infrastructure. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 maintains this commitment with availability across multiple architectures, including IBM Power, IBM z Systems and 64-bit ARM (as a Development Preview). For the IBM Power Little Endian architecture, this release enables support for the High Availability and Resilient Storage Add-Ons as well as the Open Container Initiative (OCI) runtime and image format.