Red Hat unveils image mode for its Linux distro - Exotic Digital Access
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Red Hat unveils image mode for its Linux distro

“But image mode for RHEL is one of, if not the, first enterprise Linux platform to offer it,” says Ben Breard, senior principal product manager at the Red Hat Enterprise Linux business unit.

“The entire operating system will be delivered as a bootable container,” Breard says. “Universal Base Image still needed to be run on a host operating system, for example – it was a container on a host.”

The advantage to doing this is that it can help enterprises streamline operations and management, maintain a consistent and reliable infrastructure whether on bare metal, on virtual machines, or in public clouds.

Companies rarely use an out-of-the-box operating system, Breard says. Instead, they build a standard operating environment by layering in hundreds, or thousands, of additional packages to meet their specific needs. “Problems arise when patches, updates and upgrades have to be pushed out,” he says. “Making changes to the underlying image can be incredibly tedious, time consuming and complex.”

Old-school monolithic applications had the same problem, he says. “But along came containers, which enabled discrete pieces of the app to be packaged and updated individually. So, applying this type of methodology to gold images would be a huge timesaver and innovation driver for enterprise IT. This is the initial problem that image mode solves.”

Being able to make these changes quickly is even more crucial for artificial intelligence, he says. “Patches and upgrades need to be pushed – and work – immediately,” he says. “If you can’t go fast, you can’t reap the benefits of AI workloads.”

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