Novell Inc. on June 18 released its first service pack for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10. This service pack, also known as SP1, features significant enhancements in virtualization, high-performance computing, security, interoperability, and system management.
At the same time, Novell also announced the commercial availability of the SUSE Linux Enterprise Virtual Machine Driver Pack. This is a bundle of Xen-compatible para-virtualized network, bus, and block device drivers that enable unmodified Windows and Linux guest operating systems to run with near-native performance in virtual environments on systems with Intel VT (virtualization technology) and AMD-V (virtualization) chip sets.
Some of this improved virtualization technology is now available for both the desktop, SLED, as well as the server, SLES. Novells Xen can run unmodified Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2000, Windows XP, Vista, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4/5 as clients, according to the company. VMware virtualization products are also supported on SLED, both as host and as a guest, including VMware Workstation, Server, Player.
SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP1 also includes updated high-availability storage infrastructure and support for new processor technologies, including quad-core Intel Xeon and quad-core AMD Opteron processors, Novell said.
For improved security, SP1 also includes home directory and partition encryption, the company added. System administrators are also able to bar SLED users from unlimited access to system functionality with the desktop lockdown tool, Sabayon (not to be confused with the Italian Linux distribution, Sabayon). This tool gives managers granular control over what desktop elements are available for end users. For example, you can restrict system access with it.