Canonical Voices

Posts tagged with 'server'

Paul Oh

Great news that Ubuntu 11.10 will include Cloud Foundry, an open source Platform as a Service (PaaS) that enables developers to build, deploy and run Cloud applications. Other PaaS offerings have typically locked you into using specific frameworks and services defined by the PaaS vendor as well as proprietary host platforms. This has made migrating applications between different providers as well as moving applications back into your own data center difficult if not impossible.

Cloud Foundry is the world’s first Open PaaS with your choice of frameworks, application services and Cloud deployment platforms. Cloud Foundry is made to be extensible so that while Spring, Rails, Sinatra and Node.js apps are supported today more frameworks can be added in the future as they gain in popularity. Even more exciting is that you will be able to run your PaaS in any cloud or behind your own firewall if you choose. No lock-in to a single development framework or Cloud vendor!

In Ubuntu 11.10 we’ve added client and server deployment tools using Ensemble that allow you to easily deploy a single node server in minutes as well as a distributed, multi node environment quickly and easily to create a production quality PaaS. You can deploy applications in AWS, Openstack or on your own internal servers.

Stay tuned as we’ll be doing more exciting work with Cloud Foundry. We encourage you to check out Cloud Foundry in Ubuntu 11.10 and learn more about the project at www.cloudfoundry.org

Cloud Foundry Community Logo

 

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Chris Kenyon

Fitting more computing capacity into a limited power envelope is one of the key challenges facing data centre designers today. It impacts companies whether they are building a £500 million data centre or simply working how much compute that can fit into a couple of racks at a shared facility.

One of the emerging approaches to solving this problem is to look at the technologies in low power-consumption appliances like phones and applying them to dense clusters in server-like configurations. Whether it is in smartphones, tablets or other embedded systems, the processor at the heart of these low power devices is generally ARM-based.

With Ubuntu Server becoming the de-facto standard for cloud infrastructure and big data solutions, we recognise that power consumption is key to efficient scaling. Building on four years of working with ARM, we are now taking the step of supporting Ubuntu Server on ARM.  We expect these processors to be used in a variety of use cases including microservers.

This is a first step and there will be many revisions of processors, hardware designs and of software as the performance and supported server workloads optimised for ARM grow over the next four years. It is, however, a first crucial step towards a new technology and one where yet again open-source innovation leads.

The new addition to the Ubuntu family | First release in October 2011

In October, the Ubuntu Server 11.10 release will be simultaneously available for x86, x86-64 and ARM-based architectures. The base image of the releases will be the same across architectures with a common kernel baseline. The ARM architecture will also be part of the long-term support (LTS) version of Ubuntu Server in 12.04 and other future releases.

Initial development focus and optimisation will be around the most popular Ubuntu workloads of web/network infrastructure and distributed data processing via NoSQL or big data applications where workloads typically use hundreds or thousands of systems.

Get involved

The Ubuntu Server on ARM initiative is a multi-year initiative gathering broad participation. More project information can be found on the Ubuntu wiki

Hardware partners, ISVs and open-source application developers keen to join existing partners around Ubuntu Server on ARM should contact us via our partner enquiry form.

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Mark Baker

Last week saw the culmination of one of the UK’s most popular TV shows – Britain’s Got Talent. The way in which this show over five series has captured the attention of the British public is quite incredible, with the majority of popular media outlets dedicating significant space to the contestants, the judges, rumours about the format and speculation about who would win.

Such coverage and excitement means that Britain’s Got Talent drives audience and voter engagement to levels that politicians must dream about. Of course there are many ways that the show makes sure it gets our attention, not least of which is having hours of live coverage on prime time television, but, the talented team behind the show are also using many techniques to encourage deeper engagement for a modern audience.

Take for example the Buzz Off game. This is a game with which viewers can play along while watching the show to ‘buzz’ the acts that they don’t like using a mobile or web-based application. The buzzes are stored with a running total kept and shown per act on the website, so that the audience goes from being an passive viewer to an active participant in the show. The Buzz Off game is developed by Livetalkback for the Britain’s Got Talent Team and recently Malcolm Box, CTO of Livetalkback explained to a group of London big data enthusiasts some of the challenges in building and designing an application that is required to scale to almost Facebook like proportions for a short period of time. The full presentation is below, but for convenience some of the key points are:

  • The volume of traffic being handled by the Buzz application during a two hour live show is equivalent to 130 billion requests per month – excluding Google, this would put the application as approximately the 2nd largest website in the world behind Facebook.
  • To manage this scale, the application is based on Ubuntu Server, MySQL and Cassandra all hosted in the Amazon Public Cloud
  • The service uses hundreds of instances that must be brought online very quickly as additional capacity is required and then released as the load declines after the show.

Malcolm and the team at Livetalkback have done an incredible job to put this together in a short space of time and have it work reliably throughout this year’s programme. A cloud-based approach made perfect sense for an application with such specific scaling requirements, and it was vital that the application scaled not only technically but financially as well. This is where Ubuntu on Amazon really proved its worth – customers pay for the resources they use and there are no license fees or royalties to worry about when bringing up new instances. It is the type of efficient driving of engagement that once again Government departments must be in awe of.

Which brings us onto the Cabinet Office. The UK Government is looking for ways to provide cost effective online systems that drive audience engagement. Recently there have been signs that there has been progress  through the Alpha.gov.uk project led by Martha Lane Fox. Alpha.gov.uk is a prototype site that demonstrates how digital services could be delivered more effectively and simply to users through the use of open, agile and cheaper digital technologies. It is only a prototype at the moment but it is significant in that it has been quickly put together and delivers exactly what it is supposed to do in a cost effective way. So how did they do it? Well they decided on a similar architecture to Livetalkback – Open source software based on Ubuntu Server in a public cloud. Full details of the technology used is at:

http://blog.alpha.gov.uk/colophon

British tax payers will take heart form the knowledge that someone in the Cabinet Office is looking at this and hopefully wondering why more Government services can’t be delivered like this. When it comes to engaging an audience and encouraging interaction in a cost effective way, Britain’s Got Talent and the Cabinet Office now have more in common than you’d think.

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Gerry Carr

One of the benefits of the direction that’s been taken with the next release of Ubuntu is that there is no longer a need for a separate netbook edition. The introduction of the new shell for Ubuntu means that we have a user interface that works equally well whatever the form factor of the PC. And the underlying technology works on a range of architectures including those common in netbook, notebooks, desktops or whatever you choose to run it on. Hence the need for a separate version for netbooks is removed.

To be clear, this is the opposite of us withdrawing from the netbook market. In fact looking at the download figures on ubuntu.com interest in netbooks is not only thriving but booming. It’s us recognising that the market has moved on and celebrating that separate images are no longer a requirement as the much anticipated convergence of devices moves closer.

A return to the Ubuntu name

Which actually got us thinking about our naming conventions in totality. ‘Ubuntu Desktop Edition’ arose in 2005 as a response to the launch of Ubuntu Server Edition and our desire to distinguish between the two. But desktops are no longer the pre-eminent client platform. And actually naming the the ‘edition’ after any target technology is going to have us chasing the trend. Also we were tying ourselves to some ungainly product titles – Ubuntu 10.04 LTS Server Edition for instance. User feedback also told us that people thought the edition was not for them as they had a laptop and spent time looking for a ‘Laptop Edition’.

So we are going back to our roots. From 11.04 the core product that you run on your PC will be simply, Ubuntu. Therefore the next release will be Ubuntu 11.04 and you can run that, my friend, on anything you like from a netbook to a notebook to a desktop. Ubuntu Server will be maintained as a separate product of course and named simply, Ubuntu Server 11.04.

We think this will make things simpler. When we mean Ubuntu for notebooks we will say just that rather than the more confusing, ‘Ubuntu Desktop Edition for notebooks’. We are retaining the concept of ‘remixes’ for community projects and the naming convention therein. And we would love to hear what you think.

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Neil Levine

We made a small flurry of announcements last week, all of which were related to cloud computing. I think it is worthwhile to put some context around Ubuntu and the cloud and explain a little more about where we are with this critical strategic strand for our beloved OS.

First of all, the announcements. We announced the release of Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud on Dell servers. This is a hugely significant advance in the realm of internal cloud provision. It’s essentially formalising a lot of the bespoke work that Dell has done in huge data centres (based on a variety of OSes) and making similar technology available for smaller deployments. We attended the Dell sales summit in Las Vegas and we were very encouraged to meet with many of the Dell salespeople whose job it will be to deliver this to their customers. This is a big company, backing a leading technology and encouraging businesses to start their investigations of cloud computing in a very real way.

More or less simultaneously, we announced our formal support for the OpenStack project and the inclusion of their Bexar release in our next version of Ubuntu, 11.04. This will be in addition to Eucalyptus, it is worth stating. Eucalyptus is the technology at the core of UEC – and will be in Ubuntu 11.04 – as it has been since 9.04. Including two stacks has caused some raised eyebrows but it is not an unusual position for Ubuntu. While we look to pick one technology for integration into the platform in order to deliver the best user experience possible, we also want to make sure that users have access to the best and most up to date free and open-source software. The increasing speed of innovation that cloud computing is driving has meant that Ubuntu, with its 6 month release cadence, is able to deliver the tools and programs that developers and admins want before any other operating system.

Users will ultimately decide what deployment scenarios each stack best suits. Eucalyptus certainly has the advantage of maturity right now, especially for internal cloud deployments. OpenStack, meanwhile, continue to focus on rapid feature development and, given its heritage, has appeal to service providers looking to stand up their own public clouds. Wherever the technology is deployed, be it in the enterprise or for public clouds, we want Ubuntu to be the underlying infrastructure for all the scenarios and will continue to direct our platform team to deliver the most tightly integrated solution possible.

Finally we saw our partner Autonomic Resources announce UEC is now available for purchase by Federal US government buyers. This is the first step on a long road the federal deployment, as anyone familiar with the governmental buying cycles will realise. But it is a good example of the built-to-purpose cloud environments that we will see more of – with the common denominator of Ubuntu at the core of it.

Which actually raises an interesting question – why is it that Ubuntu is at the heart of cloud computing? Perhaps we ought to look at more evidence before the theory. In addition to being the OS at the heart of new cloud infrastructures, we are seeing enormous usage of Ubuntu as the guest OS on the big public clouds, such as AWS and Rackspace, for instance. It is probably the most popular OS on those environments and others – contact your vendor to confirm :-)

So why is this OS that most incumbent vendors would dismiss as fringe, seeing such popularity in this new(ish) wave of computing? Well there are a host of technical reasons to do with modularity, footprint, image maintenance etc. But they are better expressed by others.

I think the reason for Ubuntu’s prominence is because it is innovation made easy. Getting on and doing things on Ubuntu is a friction-free experience. We meet more and more tech entrepreneurs who tell us how they have built more than one business on Ubuntu on the cloud. Removing licence costs and restrictions allows people to get to the market quickly.

But beyond speed, it is also about reducing risk. With open-source now firmly established in the IT industry, and with the term open used so promiscuously, it is easy to forget that the economic benefits of truly free, open-source software. The combination of cloud computing, where scale matters, and open source is a natural one and this is why Ubuntu is the answer for those who need the reassurance that they can both scale quickly but also avoid vendor lock-in in the long-term.

More specifically, and this brings us back to the announcements, there are now clear scenarios where users can reach a point where even the economics of a licence-free software on a public cloud start to break down. At a certain stage it is simply cheaper to make the hardware investment to run your own cloud infrastructure. Or there might be regulatory, cultural or a host of other reasons for wanting cloud-like efficiencies built on internal servers.

The work we have done with OpenStack and with Eucalyptus means Ubuntu is an ideal infrastructure on which to build a cloud. This will typically be for the internal provision of a cloud environment but equally could be the basis or a new public cloud. It is entirely open as to the type of guest OS and in all cases continues to support the dominant API of Amazon EC2, ensuring portability for those writing applications.

And as we have seen, Ubuntu is the ultimate OS to deploy in a cloud and with which to build a cloud. No-one provides more up-to-date images on the most popular public cloud platforms. Our work to ensure compatibility to the most popular standards means that those guests will run just as well on a UEC cloud however that is deployed – either internally or for cloud provision externally.

So technology moves markets. Economics does too, only more so. Ubuntu has come at the right point in our short IT history to ride both waves. The scale is there, the standards are emerging and the ability to provide an answer to the choice between running a cloud or running on a cloud is more fully realised on Ubuntu than on any other OS – open source or not.

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Nick Barcet

In the spring of 2010, members of the Ubuntu development team worked with Dell to build and test OpenManage 6.3 for Ubuntu. Several of our engineers took several weeks working with Dell Linux engineers to build out a process for ensuring:
- all of the dependencies were met,
- helped get the Dell Linux team up to speed on the Ubuntu packaging policy,
- provided assistance during the build process,
- and reviewed the packages when they were built.
This effort resulted in the release in late July 2010 of Dell OpenManage 6.3 for Ubuntu.

Since last summer, The Dell Linux team continues to work on improvements to OpenManage and subsequently released both a 64 bit and 32 bit version of the Dell OpenManage 6.4 release for Ubuntu in mid January 2011. For more information on this release see Prudhvi Tella’s blog entry.If you are using Dell Poweredge Servers, you can find the latest deb from Dell’s Community Linux repository using these instructions .

Finally, if you are using Dell Poweredge Servers and Ubuntu, please reach out to your Dell sales representative and insist on receiving proper support for Ubuntu with Dell OpenManage. Customer feedback directly to the manufacturer is the best way to get Ubuntu properly represented.

Published on behalf on John Pugh, Software Partner Manager

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Nick Barcet

OpenStack today have made a number of announcements about the Bexar release of their cloud stack and we were delighted to be able to confirm its inclusion in the repositories for Ubuntu 11.04 as well as officially joining the community. We have been engaged with the OpenStack community informally for some time. Some Canonical alumni have been key to driving the OpenStack initiative over in Rackspace and there has been a very healthy dialogue between the two projects with strong attendance at UDS and at the OpenStack conferences by engineers in both camps.

In fact it is noteworthy that the OpenStack project has taken a lot of the methodology of the Ubuntu project and applied to how they self-organise and release. They have the same twice-yearly open conference to drive the definition of the project and a similar but three-monthly release cycle. It’s easy to forget that this now ‘standard’, time based, approach to open source development and release was pioneered by Ubuntu and it is gratifying to see it permeate.

But as to OpenStack technology, I know that there are many users very keen to get their hands on a more fully integrated version that Bexar on Ubuntu Server 11.04 will offer. It has always been the goal of Ubuntu with regards to cloud to offer the best integrated experience for open source cloud development and deployment. We did it with Eucalyptus for Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud for the past two years and the next release of this in April will continue on offering a great fully-supported option for businesses looking to bring cloud technology within the firewall. In fact only yesterday saw the official launch of UEC on Dell servers (www.dell.com/canonical) which offers businesses the opportunity to buy hardware from Dell with UEC baked in and fully supported by both companies.

Our aim with OpenStack over time is to make Ubuntu the best OS for clouds built on this stack, both at the infrastructure and guest levels. There is real energy and momentum building around this technology and we congratulate the guys and girls in that project for their success so far. It looks a terrific base for building out open-source based public clouds and its embracing on not just its own APIs but also the EC2 APIs. This offers great options for users and customers to remain flexible as we move towards industry-wide open standards for these types of architectures. In 11.04 (Natty Narwhal), OpenStack 2011.1 (Bexar) will be delivered as a technology preview, and Canonical will not yet be able to provide full support for it. We first want to allow our users to test it and provide us feedback before providing it as a production ready environment. Comments, feedback and reactions are welcome on the Ubuntu-Cloud mailing list, forum and irc channels (http://cloud.ubuntu.com/community/interact/).

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Gerry Carr

Canonical over the last four years or so has brought businesses a growing range of services and software tools to help them make better use of the Ubuntu platform. Many of these services, such as Landscape systems management and technical support, have proven valuable for companies that want to more easily manage and maintain Ubuntu in their business.

Rather than having to decide which tools or services are useful, we decided to make things simple by bringing together all the necessary tools and services into a single offering, Ubuntu Advantage.

Ubuntu Advantage has four service components:

* systems management

* enterprise technical support

* legal assurance

* access to knowledge base

At Canonical, we believe these are they key service areas that help enterprises make successful use of Ubuntu in their business. As new technology features and capabilities are incorporated into the Ubuntu platform, the Ubuntu Advantage service offering will also grow to support those new platform capabilities.

The systems management service category offers Canonical’s Landscape systems management and monitoring tool. Within any enterprise it is crucial for IT departments to have the necessary systems management tool to avoid having to spend copious amounts of time managing and maintaining systems with patches and security upgrades. Although, these tasks are vital for enterprise systems to remain safe, they can also be tedious and unnecessarily time consuming without the right tools. The package management and automation features of Landscape help to remove much of this manual work.

Ubuntu Advantage includes enterprise-level technical support for the desktop and server to give businesses direct backing from the source of Ubuntu, Canonical. This is a valuable service because businesses can deploy Ubuntu with a greater sense of security; should they run into any problems, they have the support from the organisation which released it.

Our aim is to provide comprehensive support, but we also want to give customers flexibility with the type of service they receive as we recognise that different machines will run different workloads and need different levels of support. On the server there are three options ranging from support for basic server workloads to the most complex setups:

* Essential Server – to cover common workloads such as file and print serving

* Standard Server – for more advanced business needs like server virtualisation and integration into existing Windows networks

* Advanced Server – to cover complex configurations such as high-availability and clustering

On the desktop there were two main usage types we want to cover, general business use and developer use:

* Standard Desktop – covers general end users using standard business applications such as email, office suites and web browsing

* Advanced Desktop – covers developers that have more complex desktop configurations, such as desktop virtualisation, and use advanced developer tools

A major aim of Ubuntu Advantage is to ease the adoption of Ubuntu by providing quick and easy access to a definitive answers. The online Knowledge Base gives customers a central repository from which they can quickly reference at any time definitive guides on how to resolve common issues or information about best practices deployments. Canonical’s support engineers create the content in the knowledge base keeping it accurate and up-to-date on the latest releases.

It’s also crucial that staff using Ubuntu feel comfortable with it, because the more confident they feel the more they can take advantage of Ubuntu’s many features and the fewer problems they will come across. So we also included training credits in Ubuntu Advantage. These can be redeemed to train end users on how to make the most of Ubuntu Desktop for their daily job, or they can be redeemed for system administrator training to help them more easily deploy and manage Ubuntu systems.

We know it is important for many organisations to have legal assurance to enable the adoption of an open source platform, which is why we have also included our legal assurance programme, Ubuntu Assurance, with all Ubuntu Advantage service options.

Ubuntu Advantage provides simplicity and an easier way for businesses to purchase the necessary tools and services to manage, support and use their Ubuntu platform more effectively and efficiently. Ultimately, it saves them precious time and money that can be spent elsewhere in their businesses. Initial reception has been very positive and we look forward to getting more feedback on the new services as users become familiar with them and hopefully see the value in them.

The Ubuntu Advantage website is live at: visit http://bit.ly/cOasJ3

Fern Ho, Ubuntu Advantage Product Manager

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Canonical

Earlier this year, MuleSoft approached us with the desire to partner and offer to work with Canonical to improve our default java container, Tomcat, for Ubuntu 10.04 LTS Server. The idea was to make Tomcat on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS easier to download, install, and configure on Ubuntu than JBOSS is on RHEL. The Ubuntu Server engineering team worked with Mulesoft engineering to update Tomcat upstream and those updates were pulled into Ubuntu 10.04 LTS. We are now pleased to announce that the Apache Tomcat package for Ubuntu has been updated and refreshed to the latest Apache release (6.0.26). The team over at MuleSoft has also taken on the task of cleaning up a lot of the utilities, as well as bug fixes that improve the configuration process for starting Tomcat. To see the technical details, you can read Jason Brittain’s blog.

Mulesoft is a great example of our ISV community stepping up with key community contributions. With Ubuntu being community driven, Mulesoft worked closely with Ubuntu Server engineering to bring the Tomcat packages up to the latest release and pushed those changes upstream. Contributions from the community are key to the success of Ubuntu. MuleSoft also provides enterprise class support for running Apache Tomcat on Ubuntu Server in mission-critical deployments.

If you use Tomcat and have servers running in test or production, check out MuleSoft’s add-on product for Tomcat, called Tcat Server . Mulesoft’s Tcat server adds remote diagnostics, version controlled deployments, Tomcat clustering, and clustered restarts to Apache Tomcat deployments. In addition, the management server has a REST API for extending via scripting, or hooking it into your overall systems management interfaces. Tcat Server is free to use in development and is available at no incremental cost to MuleSoft’s Tomcat support service offering.

Tcat Server is available from Mulesoft

John Pugh, ISV Channel Manager

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admin

On Wednesday Dell announced a comprehensive overview of its enterprise strategy. Significant in its announcement, was the addition of Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud (UEC) as an infrastructure solution, joining the proprietary offerings from VMWare and Microsoft. This is the first major offering of a true open source Cloud solution backed by a major corporate vendor.

Dell will offer a series of ‘blueprint’ configurations that have been optimised for different use cases  and scale. These will include PowerEdge-C hardware, UEC software and full technical support – you will be able to buy these straight from Dell or you can use the ‘blueprints’ as a base to create your own bespoke solution. The Dell team have great strength and experience here and will provide detailed guidance on all the ‘blueprint’ solutions, as well as enterprise class deployments.

Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud leads the Linux field with integration of cloud capabilities directly into the OS. UEC is based on Eucalyptus which builds on the de facto cloud API standards of Amazon EC2 and S3. The relationship between Canonical and Eucalyptus Systems ensures that you have one escalation path to resolve any issues with the OS or the cloud service. Offering the same APIs as the dominant public cloud offering, Amazon EC2, you can build your applications to run on either platform. The Dell solution will be based on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS – which is released on April 29th.

Behind the scenes we’ve worked with Dell’s DCS team for over six months to test and validate the integration of the cloud stack on their new PowerEdge-C series. Within the industry, the DCS team has an excellent reputation for full design, integration, installation anddeployment. It has been both challenging and exciting working to meet and exceed their expectations, a result of excellent cooperation between the Dell core team, our Cloud & Server team and Eucalyptus.

Mark Murphy, Global Alliances Director

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Canonical

A few weeks ago myself and Dustin Kirkland had the privilege of travelling to the Intel facility in Hillsboro, Oregon to work with Billy Cox, Rekha Raghu, Paul Guermonprez, Trevor Cooper and Kamal Natesan of Intel and Dan Nurmi and Neil Soman of Eucalyptus Systems and a few others on developing a proof of concept whitepaper on the use of Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud on Intel Xeon processors (Nehalem).

The whitepaper is published today on the Intel site (registration required) so it seems like a good time to talk about why we collaborated.

The Intel Cloud Builder program is intended to develop some best practice information for businesses and institutions looking to take advantage of the promise of cloud computing. As we do consistently with UEC, we are being specific when we talk about cloud as the ability to build Infrastructure as a Service behind a corporate firewall – that is on your own systems, protected by your own security protocols.

In Portland we had access to some great hardware and as an ex-Intel man, it was good to mess directly with the metal again. Intel defined a number of use and test cases and the guys from Intel, Eucalyptus and myself were able to have some fun putting UEC through its paces. And the results were good. We documented them and the whitepaper gives numerous code and scenario examples to help anyone new to cloud to get up to speed really quickly and the make the most of the capabilities of the Xeon processor in supporting an internal IaaS infrastructure. You can find out how to get started on UEC with existing documentation. but this whitepaper takes it to the next stage.

Being able to test the software as part of the Intel Cloud Builder program and jointly publish this whitepaper is a great endorsement of what is still a young technology. And I hope it will give users confidence to start building their own UEC deployment on x86 technology.

Nick Barcet, Ubuntu Server Product Manager

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Gerry Carr

This week were very pleased to see three companies behind three great technologies announce their support for Ubuntu. In the run up to the LTS in late April we are keen that our users are aware of the growing number of application options that they can have on their preferred operating system. These will be a mix of open source solutions, the ‘enterprise’ version of open source solutions or  proprietary applications. A healthy and growing ecosystem is an obvious prerequisite for any successful OS.

PGP has extended its enterprise-focused data protection solutions to include Ubuntu in addition to Windows and Mac. For companies running a mixed environment (an increasingly common scenario as Ubuntu begins to find a place in businesses as a replacement technology) security and administrative concerns are reduced as the same tool can used whatever the choice of OS.

GroundWorks Open Source announced its support for Ubuntu Server. GWOS’ excellent systems monitoring and management tools will give users a great, low-cost option for their Ubuntu deployments, something that is very important as Ubuntu Server is pushed into larger and more critical use environments.

Finally LikeWise and the Ubuntu development team were able to confirm the latest version Likewise Open 5.4 has made the alpha of Ubuntu 10.04 where it will undergo rigorous testing for stability before confirmation in the release. Users from 9.10 and 8.04LTS will have a direct upgrade path at release and a version supported for five years when they do.

I hope you take time to consider these options as part of your Ubuntu deployment. Expect to see more of these types of announcements as we broaden support for the 10.04 release. We will also be able to give details soon of some programs for the ISVs themselves to more easily come on board with the LTS release and understand why it is a great addition to their portfolios. We’re looking well set for a great release.

Steve George, Corporate Services at Canonical

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Gerry Carr

The Ubuntu Server Team wants to know how you use Ubuntu Server Edition in day-to-day operations to help the team prioritize the support and development of the product.  This is the second edition of this initiative which was first introduced in 2008.

In an effort to better understand, support and further the Ubuntu Server Edition we would like to ask you to take this survey which should take between 15 to 30 minutes to complete. The information provided will help us determine where we can improve support, where to add additional resources and to generate a better understanding of the community which we work within.

Please note that this survey is being conducted by the Ubuntu Server Team community together with the Canonical Product Management. Information about the team is available at https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ServerTeam/

To take the survey, please go to http://survey.ubuntu.com/

Thanks

Nick Barcet, Ubuntu Server Edition product manager

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Larry Poon

The cloud is getting a lot of attention. Understandably and rightly so – it is one of the hottest topics around. An on-line panel discussion on how businesses can incorporate cloud computing into their existing datacenter operations will take place in a webinar hosted by rPath on 24 September 2009. You’ll hear from the some of the most experienced experts in the field:

Michael Crandell, Chief Executive Officer of RightScale

Erik Troan, founder and Chief Technology Officer of rPath

Dr. Rich Wolski, Chief Technology Officer of Eucalyptus Systems

Matt Zimmerman, Chief Technology Officer of Canonical

David Berlind , Chief Content Officer of TechWeb

We’re looking forward to participating on this webinar, so please join us on 24 September 2009 at 11:00 a.m. PST.

For more information and registration please go to the the rPath registration page.

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daniel.dolinov

Large, complex or mission critical IT environments often have multi-layered support problems. A clear message from our corporate customers has been that when it comes to support it’s vital to have access to experts who are familiar with their environment: there’s no time to bring a new support engineer up to speed, customers need someone who has intimate knowledge of their technology and situation.

We’ve created the Premium Service Engineer (PSE) option to address this need. Each PSE is an expert technical engineer who provides a personalised level of service to their named accounts. Each PSE has deep knowledge of the Ubuntu platform aligned with experience managing Ubuntu in complex, heterogeneous IT environments.

Prevention is always better than cure, so the role of the PSE is to become a virtual member of the customer’s IT team. This approach allows the customer to take advantage of the PSE service for expert advice on any new projects involving Ubuntu technologies. Meaning that the customer has someone available to them who can help with existing systems, deployments and migrations.

If issues do arise, the PSE provides immediate support, based on a thorough understanding of their customer’s business and IT environment. Should the issue need to be escalated, the PSE will work directly with the Ubuntu foundation team to provide a speedy resolution.

We feel strongly that with the PSE service, we are addressing the support needs of our largest and most demanding Ubuntu deployments. If you’d like to know more have a look at the PSE (http://www.ubuntu.com/support/services/pse) service area.

Fern Ho, Product Manager, Canonical Corporate Services.

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daniel.dolinov

Canonical’s certification of Ubuntu 9.04 Server Edition for a range of HP ProLiant servers has now been officially recognised by HP through reference on their website – yup, Ubuntu now has its own page – www.hp.com/go/ubuntu.

More good news for users of Ubuntu Server on HP ProLiant hardware -  the ‘HP ProLiant Support Pack for Ubuntu’ is now available for 9.04, with lots of management agents and drivers to make life easier for you.

These are strong steps forward in the recognition of Ubuntu as a server OS for enterprise deployment by many users. We have worked with HP over many months to push this forward enable Ubuntu on HP ProLiant servers and have been very pleased by their commitment to provide a very wide range of operating system choices user preferences.

We expect there is more to come and we remain committed as ever to enabling Ubuntu to run really well on the hardware that our users prefer

Gerry Carr, Head of Platform Marketing

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johnpugh

Next week (31 August through 3 September) VMorld 2009 kicks off in San Francisco at the Moscone Center. For the second year, Canonical has a booth to demonstrate Ubuntu’s virtualization and cloud computing capabilities.

Last year VMWorld 2008 was in sunny Las Vegas. We talked to thousands of people throughout the show, and only found a handful who hadn’t used Ubuntu – don’t worry we sent every one away with a free CD so they could put that right! It was a great show with lots of interest in Ubuntu following on from the 8.04 LTS release, and our virtualization solution.

We expect the 2009 show to be just as much fun. Ubuntu has been on the top of the VMWare charts as a base OS for many virtual machine images, so we hope that the new virtualization features coming in 9.10 will be well received. In 9.04 we previewed Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud (UEC) our private or on-premises cloud. This gives anyone who has their own servers the ability to set-up a cloud similar to Amazon’s EC2.

We’ll be presenting a talk for enterprises on how cloud computing can help them at the Solution Exchange Theatre on Wednesday 2nd September at 11:50 am. Entitled “The Clear Path to a Cloudy Enterprise”, it will be given by John Pugh, one of Canonical’s Partner Managers. If you would like to hear about the future of cloud computing, how open source offers a real alternative, and how Ubuntu can be used in this scenario then this talk should be informative and fun.

If you are going to be at VMWorld then please come along to the Canonical booth (#2403) and say hello to us. We would love to talk to you about Ubuntu, how you’re using it, and how you can get more from it – see you
in San Francisco!

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Gerry Carr

Moving Ubuntu into the enterprise, especially on the server, has been a significant undertaking. While the Ubuntu Server Edition has been around since late 2005, it really came into its own in mid 2006 with Ubuntu 6.06LTS — the first Long Term Supported version. The LTS versions are released every two years and supported for a full five years on the server.

Since then the product has been enhanced significantly, shipping with the best open source tools. For those wishing to take advantage of the latest kernel builds and utilities the Server version tracks the regular Ubuntu’s six-month cadence. It is proving to be a very popular platform with hundreds of thousands of corporate and SMB users globally. If you have not seen the most recent server statistics then you should. Registration required.

With the current economic crisis, we’re seeing more enterprises looking for greater value and lower costs in their server infrastructures. One of the interesting findings from a recent survey (see figure below) is the range of hardware technologies on which Ubuntu finds itself. Just last week we spoke to a Chicago-based finance house that runs entirely on Ubuntu server and runs their open and proprietary stack on Ubuntu on Hewlett Packard machines mostly, with some Dell in the mix. These heterogeneous environments are pretty common and the range of software it is run on pretty wide. Our survey also indicted that hardware support is very important to our users.

Which is why it is great news that HP are partnering with us to move towards full certification of Ubuntu on Proliant servers – more about this over the next few months. This will give another layer of assurance to users and customers – particularly in the enterprise – with market leader HP recognizing the growing importance of Ubuntu to enterprise and SMB customers. The certification means HP will list Ubuntu as a supported operating system and verify the work undertaken by Canonical to ensure full certified compatibility. Furthermore both companies are fully co-operating at the engineering level to provide full underlying confidence for HP customers using the certified servers.

This is great news for users who’ve adopted Ubuntu as their enterprise class server software and even better new for those using HP Proliant servers.

Mark Murphy – Alliances Manager, Canonical

Hardware Profile - CLICK TO ENLARGE


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Gerry Carr

Over the last two months Canonical and the Ubuntu server community ran a user survey to delve into the detail of Ubuntu server use. You can see the original launch plan here. The audience was self-selecting; we promoted it through the Ubuntu website and some other popular Linux server forums. Our friends at the analyst house, Redmonk, advised us on some of the questions and we have shared the raw data with them for their learning. In the end 6819 people representing the same number of organisations completed the survey. This was no easy task as there were many questions so our thanks to all the participants.

The survey is available here (registration required) and there is extensive commentary available with the survey itself. At a very high level it paints a picture of Ubuntu in use for common workloads in production ready environments across a vast number of sectors. The respondents tended to come from Europe and North America, which is probably an accurate reflection of business use of Ubuntu Server Edition currently. The size of organisation stretch from the lone wolf right up to 10,000+ organisations – to reflect this we have taken some splits of the data to see where response varied by size.

In short, if you are using or contemplating using Ubuntu Server Edition this is essential reading.

Gerry Carr – Head of platform marketing

An example of the data available in the Server Survey

An example of the data available in the Server Survey

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