Standards—a fairly innocuous word that seems to create a storm of controversy whenever it is spoken. Everyone agrees it is a good thing, but no one agrees on what standards should encompass or how they should be enforced. Whether for auto parts or operating systems, standardization can be a big plus for the consumer.
The Linux operating system, unlike other software products, has multiple sources—each distribution represents a different implementation. The differences are generally in the installation software and methods (RPM vs. DEB packages, for example); however, nothing is currently in place to prevent a company from adding a feature to the operating system and still call it Linux. Other companies are free to adopt the feature, but this is not required.
This month, we look at the Linux standardization efforts. Two things are very clear in the standards debate:
Distributions want to remain unique in order to maintain marketplace advantage.
Users and manufacturers of applications software (ISVs) want applications that will run on whichever distribution they own, i.e., they want applications to run on all distributions.
These two things are not mutually exclusive. After all, users do not want one distribution to become the Linux “Microsoft” (it might be one other than their favorite), so users too are all for uniqueness in distributions. And no distribution wants to be the odd man out—the distribution on which a major application doesn't work; so, the distributions also are for compatibility. Developers more than anyone want standards that will enable them to write programs that will work across all distributions without hassle. Thus, it appears as if all sides have a common ground on which to meet.
Setting and following standards is the only way to ever ensure cross-distribution compatibility for applications. However, standards that are defined in a rigid and finely detailed manner will be ignored by developers as unrealistic and difficult to follow. Finding that optimum position between standards that are too lax and those that are too rigid is the laudable goal of the Linux Standards Base Project. Dan Quinlan, the project leader, tells us about the plans of the LSB in his article in this issue.
To find out where all the distributions stand on this issue, Norman Jacobowitz talked to representatives of each by e-mail and at the LinuxWorld Expo. Some were more forthcoming than others; see who said what in Norman's article this month.
Want to express your opinions? Join the discussion groups on Linux Journal Interactive, http://interactive.linuxjournal.com/.
—Marjorie Richardson, Editor in Chief
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
Free to Linux Journal readers.View Now!
|The Firebird Project's Firebird Relational Database||Jul 29, 2016|
|Stunnel Security for Oracle||Jul 28, 2016|
|SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager||Jul 21, 2016|
|My +1 Sword of Productivity||Jul 20, 2016|
|Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!||Jul 19, 2016|
|Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)||Jul 18, 2016|
- The Firebird Project's Firebird Relational Database
- Stunnel Security for Oracle
- My +1 Sword of Productivity
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
- Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
- Google's SwiftShader Released
- SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide