It took its own sweet time, but Red Hat Enterprise Linux is finally available in the secure AWS GovCloud (US) region of Amazon Web Services (AWS). This is a major move for Red Hat in entering the world of secure government cloud computing.
AWS GovCloud is meant to enable US government agencies and customers to move sensitive workloads into the cloud while addressing their specific regulatory and compliance requirements. RHEL, of course, is already widely deployed in U.S. government agencies.
Indeed Red Hat's Security-Enhanced Linux (SELinux), was built with the help of the NSA. In data-centers RHEL's long been popular in the most security conscious federal agencies.
What's different about making RHEL available in the AWS GovCloud is that government departments can now deploy sensitive workloads on the AWS cloud and benefit from the use of identical technology as RHEL deployments in their on-premises data-centers.
The reason why these agencies would want to do this is the same one everyone has for moving software and data to the cloud: It's cheaper.
As Paul Smith, Red Hat's vice president and general manager for the Public Sector, said in a statement, “Government agencies need the ability to quickly access computing resources that clouds like AWS GovCloud provide, while still deploying applications on Red Hat’s secure platform, RHEL. On AWS GovCloud, agencies can use RHEL on demand, paying for only what they use, when they need it. As agencies determine their cloud strategies, the ability to use RHEL for both on-premises deployments and in the cloud is game-changing."