Scientific Linux: A Distro For More Than Labs - InformationWeek

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9/3/2009
02:41 PM
Serdar Yegulalp
Serdar Yegulalp
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Scientific Linux: A Distro For More Than Labs

Here's further proof there really is a Linux distribution for every need out there: Scientific Linux. The name alone should speak volumes about its intent and design, but as always there's more under the hood.

Here's further proof there really is a Linux distribution for every need out there: Scientific Linux. The name alone should speak volumes about its intent and design, but as always there's more under the hood.

The basic idea is to provide a distribution that universities, scientific institutions and researchers can rely on as a consistent data-collection and operations platform. Many of the names behind the project ought to be familiar to anyone who's skimmed the science pages: Fermilab and CERN, just to name two. The distribution itself is a customized version of Red Hat Enterprise, with the most recent build dating from July 21 (for the 4.x branch). Most of the changes are on a site-specific basis -- for instance, customizations for Fermi's work as opposed to CERN.

In many ways the project resembles CentOS, although after their recent management difficulties I'm fonder of the idea of going with a distribution where the ownership and management is a little more clearly delineated. Not to say that CentOS can't achieve something like that as well -- just that having the ownership and control of such a project handled as professionally as possible is always worthwhile. So for those of you who wanted to get your hands on a RHEL-sourced distribution but were reluctant to do so because of the above confusion, here's your chance.

Both live CDs and conventional distribution discs are all available. Go get 'em.

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