By: Ricardo Marin Matinata.
One of the key aspects of Linux that runs on IBM Power Systems is it relies on industry standard Linux. In other words, there's a lot of investment in good cooperation with the Linux community, as well as with our distribution partners, such as your "Linux" install experience, for instance, is pretty much like Linux on other platform.
This specifically means if you are no stranger to Linux, or even if you already hold investments on top the existing installation technologies like Red Hat's Anaconda, or SUSE's Yast, you will find yourself in a familiar territory.
In addition, there's always a great focus on how much time does an IBM Power Systems customer takes to get productive, therefore you will also find IBM providing advanced service and productivity tools, as in the PowerLinux Service and Productivity portal
. As you will be able to observe, there are tools ranging from exploitation of advanced RAS and DLPAR capabilities on Power Systems, configuration and initial tuning of open source workloads and convenient access to useful software such as IBM's JVM.
From there, you will also be able to spot another interesting resource, the IBM Installation Toolkit
, whose goal is to further simplify the Linux installation process, specially for those new to Linux, while delivering all the added value service and productivity tools at the same time.
Last, but not least, IBM also provides customers with a nice Linux pre-load offering, meaning you can order your shiny new IBM Power machine and request that it comes pre-installed with your choice of RHEL or SLES, plus all the nice goodies from the Serviceability and Productivity portal.
But since with great flexibility, comes great responsibility, one of the questions people usually ask around is how to make the best use of all those nice aids IBM puts together, to help you become productive faster. Certainly a fair question, and the answer depends on a few factors:
- If you are just about or planning to acquire a new IBM Power System, usually the Linux pre-load option offers you a good value. The small "gotcha" is that it may not be available in all geographies/markets, at this moment.
- If you already have Power Systems around, and hold investments on Linux installation technology, or even are a Linux savvy individual or organization, simply check out Red Hat's and SUSE's documentation on the subject, in addition to the POWER7 System documentation, and you should find all you need to get Linux going. After you are done with those, you will find useful to check out the instructions on how to hook up your system, in to the IBM PowerLinux Tools YUM repository. You will get the Service and Productivity tools, the Linux way.
- If you are new to Linux, or would like to try something a bit faster to get both Linux and the service and productivity tools, all together, then I'd refer you to IBM's nice and free PowerLinux installation helper tool, the IBM Installation Toolkit. It nicely front-ends Linux installation, as well as packs all the important service and productivity tools, so you get to the up and running system, with fewer steps.
Hopefully, with all of that, you will have the right pointers to get you productive as fast as possible with Linux running on IBM Power Systems. So time to give a try to one of these options and drop your comments. You can certainly count that IBM will try to go above and beyond the commodity space.