Red Hat joins the IBM Power8 party

Back in September, IBM and SUSE announced a partnership making SUSE Enterprise Linux available on IBM's Power8 based systems. Now it's Red Hat's turn. Is it time to consider a new platform?
Written by Dan Kusnetzky, Contributor

Red Hat has announced the launch of its Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization for IBM's Power Systems. This announcement, along with an earlier announcement made jointly by IBM and SUSE, means that enterprises ought to consider whether x86-based solutions are the only game in town.

Here's what Red Hat has to say about this announcement

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization for POWER will allow users to take advantage of IBM's next-generation Power Systems technology and the leading performance, scalability, and advanced security features of Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization.

Red Hat and IBM have long been committed to building joint solutions that empower enterprise organizations to build flexible infrastructure based on open hardware and software solutions. The IBM POWER8 processor, built on an open server platform, can deliver the speed and scale required by a variety of big data workloads. Pairing Red Hat's robust Linux operating system with IBM Power Systems will enable enterprises to achieve greater database and transactional speed, as well as lower their workload footprint.

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization alongside IBM Power Systems makes new strides in the enterprise virtualization space, providing enhanced capabilities for companies looking to optimize their scale-out big data and cloud deployments. Traditional virtualization benefits are evolving, including benefits such as reduced capital costs, faster provisioning times, and improved application delivery times. Additionally, organizations running Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization for IBM Power Systems gain a more centralized management experience with full visibility into storage, networking and infrastructure resources with Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager, a centralized management GUI.

The combined solution of IBM POWER8 and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization can boost virtualization performance and reduce virtualization management challenges, while reducing complexity and costs. This joint solution builds on the alignment between Red Hat and IBM to enhance the technology and application options for the POWER processor.

Red Hat recently announced support for POWER8 on IBM Power Systems, based on Little Endian in its Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.1 beta release, allowing POWER8 processor-based scale-out systems to deploy a broader range of enterprise applications. As demonstrated by their collaboration to produce open source innovation, Red Hat and IBM are committed to developing solutions that efficiently solve IT challenges while empowering their shared customers to focus on core business functions and future opportunities.

Snapshot analysis

Back in September, I commented on IBM's new Power8 microprocessor; its ability to run little-endian software, just like x86-based microprocessors; how SUSE was supplying its operating system for this new platform; and how this might give enterprises an opportunity to rethink their attachment to the Industry Standard System (see Is it time to consider Power 8 for Web workloads? for more information.) I believe Red Hat's announcement of Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization provides more support for that position.

Enterprises have been looking for ways to both increase their available processing power while also reducing overall hardware, software and data center-related costs. Red Hat's support of the IBM Power8 platform just might be the tool needed to bring that wish into reality.

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