Linux Product Insider: RHEL 5.2

This week's "Linux Product Insider" features Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2, Astaro Security Gateway 7.2, SugarCRM Data Center Edition, Struts 2 in Action, NAG Toolbox for MATLAB and eXtremeDB Fusion powers DIRECTV.

Here is this week's latest and greatest Linux product news:

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2
Fans of red headwear everywhere will cheer the new Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2, just released this week. In addition to providing a certified application environment, Red Hat cites enhanced capabilities in six major areas, including virtualization, desktop, security, clustering, networking and hardware support. Virtualization of very large systems, with up to 64 CPUs and 512 GB of memory, is now available. Virtualization support for NUMA-based architectures is provided, as well as security, performance, manageability and robustness improvements. CPU frequency scaling support for virtualized environments also allows for reduced power consumption. RHEL 5.2 also provides enhanced capabilities for several hardware architectures, covering x86/x86-64, Itanium, IBM POWER and IBM System z, including improved performance, power usage, scalability and manageability. The platform is also a certified OS for IBM's new Cell Blade systems.

Astaro Security Gateway 7.2
Got employees Skype-ing and chatting the day away on the company's nickel? Then Astaro Corporation hopes you'll end that practice with the new Astaro Security Gateway Version 7.2. With this new release, IT managers can recognize, classify, and block Skype connections and other popular instant messaging and other peer-to-peer programs, such as Yahoo! Messenger, ICQ, Google Talk, Jabber, etc. Astaro can recognize difficult-to-identify protocols in the data stream, such as QQ or Winny, as well as allows for centralized control of applications like BitTorrent. On the company network, exceptions to the internal security policy can be defined to grant granular access to specific services or applications for individual IP addresses or end systems. Astaro Security Gateway is available as hardware, software or virtual appliance solution.

SugarCRM Sugar Data Center Edition (beta)
Making the open-source CRM space more eclectic is SugarCRM with its new Sugar Data Center Edition, now in beta. The new product line a new product line offers a complete set of systems management, provisioning and monitoring tools that enable service providers and large organizations to deploy and manage multiple instances – distinct versions of SugarCRM – from a centralized management console. In the absence of these capabilities, says SugarCRM, large enterprises are forced to eliminate multiple instances in a sub-division of their organization and make serious trade-off decisions regarding functionality and customizations/localizations for the sake of centralized and Web services-based applications. With the new Sugar Data Center Edition, organizations "can get creative and deep with customizations and locations at no expense to one department or end user." The production release will be available in Summer 2008.

Struts 2 in Action by Brown, Davis & Stanlick (Manning)
The book publisher Manning Publications has been publishing a trove of interesting books under the radar. Manning's latest book is Struts 2 in Action by Donald Brown, Chad Davis & Scott Stanlick. Apache Struts 2, the merger between the Apache Struts and OpenSymphony WebWork projects, is a an elegant, extensible framework for creating enterprise-ready Java Web applications. The book Struts 2 in Action is targeted at working Java web developers with some background in Struts 1 or WebWork and serves as an introduction to the application framework, explaining how to quickly develop professional, production-ready, cutting-edge Web applications. Topics include key framework components (e.g. Actions, Results and Interceptors), Struts 2 plug-ins, migration from Struts 1 and WebWork 2, Ajax tags, Spring Framework integration and more.

Numerical Algorithms Group NAG Toolbox for MATLAB
If you use the MATLAB environment, you can extend it with Numerical Algorithms Group's NAG Toolbox. The Toolbox gives users access to more than 1,300 additional math and statistical algorithms for the MATLAB
environment. This additional mathematical and statistical functionality was previously unavailable or accessible to MATLAB users only by purchasing multiple toolboxes. The company claims that "the NAG Library is used by many of the world’s most prominent ISVs, scientists and academies, among others, because of its reputation for quality, flexibility and robustness." The NAG Toolbox is available for both 32- and 64-bit Linux and Windows and is compatible with MATLAB versions 2007a, 2007b, and 2008a.

McObject's eXtremeDB Fusion Database on DIRECTV Set-Top Boxes
It's sweet how much interaction the average person has nowadays with Linux and open source days without even knowing it. A fine new example is McObject's eXtremeDB Fusion database plus Linux powering DIRECTV set-top boxes. McObjects states that DIRECTV chose eXtremeDB Fusion for its hybrid in-memory/on-disk data storage that reduces development time across a range of hard disk-based and disk-less boxes, and to improve processor utilization." As a hybrid embedded database, eXtremeDB Fusion combines on-disk and all-in-memory record storage. A simple schema notation controls which records are to be saved to disk, and which are to be managed entirely in memory, without the I/O, caching and other processes inherent in disk storage. The result, says McObjects, is not only better performance, but DIRECTV could avoid creating two separate products, one that incorporates disk storage and other with all-in-memory record storage.

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