Red Hat, Inc., the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today introduced new capabilities for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift intended to help enterprises bring edge computing into hybrid cloud deployments. The world’s leading enterprise Linux platform adds features designed to maximize system stability and preserve workload independence in smaller physical footprints, while Red Hat OpenShift, the industry’s leading enterprise Kubernetes platform, now provides remote worker node architecture to help deliver Kubernetes to space-constrained and remote deployments.
Edge products and services are powering the next wave of digital transformation, globally and across nearly every industry, with edge technology vendors looking at a substantial market opportunity in the next few years. Software providers like Red Hat that can deliver existing datacenter technologies, like Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift, in an edge-centric manner are well positioned to take advantage of this shift.
According to the Worldwide Edge Spending Guide from IDC, the worldwide edge computing market is estimated to reach $250.6 billion in 2024 with edge-related software predicted to be roughly 21% of this spend. Red Hat strongly believes that edge computing requires open hybrid cloud, built on a foundation of enterprise-grade Linux and production-ready Kubernetes. With today’s updates, both Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift are further equipped to meet this demand.
Enterprise Linux, ready for the edge
The small physical footprints, remote locations and limited connectivity of edge devices pose a challenge for traditional, full-featured operating systems, but not Red Hat Enterprise Linux. With enhancements in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.3, the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform can more easily span from core datacenters to space-constrained, remote servers, and is built to provide the levels of supportability, stability and security features required by enterprise edge deployments.
Edge-focused updates to Red Hat Enterprise Linux include:
- Rapid creation of operating system images for the edge through the Image Builder capability. This enables IT organizations to more easily create purpose-built images optimized for the broad architectural challenges inherent to edge computing but customized for the exact needs of a given deployment.
- Remote device update mirroring to stage and apply updates at the next device reboot or power cycle, helping to limit downtime and manual intervention from IT response teams.
- Over-the-air updates that transfer less data while still pushing necessary code, an ideal feature for sites with limited or intermittent connectivity.
- Intelligent rollbacks built on OSTree capabilities, which enable users to provide health checks specific to their workloads to detect conflicts or code issues. When a problem is detected, the image is automatically reverted to the last good update, helping to prevent unnecessary downtime at the edge.
With these capabilities, Red Hat Enterprise Linux is able to provide a single production-grade Linux platform that can span the entirety of an enterprise, from on-premise servers to the public cloud and from core datacenters to the farthest-flung edge devices. This standardization on open innovation provides the backbone for open hybrid cloud, enabling organizations to focus on application and service innovation and not compatibility or integration challenges across an IT estate.
Expanding edge architectures with Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes
In August 2020, Red Hat OpenShift introduced 3-node cluster support, bringing the capabilities of the industry’s leading enterprise Kubernetes platform to bear at the network’s edge in a smaller footprint. Today, OpenShift further expands edge architecture support with remote worker nodes.
Remote worker nodes enable IT organizations to place single worker nodes in remote locations that can then be managed by centralized supervisor nodes at a larger site, such as a core or regional datacenter. This provides an additional topology choice to organizations pursuing Kubernetes innovation at the edge. When combined with Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes, IT teams are able to deploy more consistent and stable Kubernetes clusters along with the associated resources, wherever connectivity to the internet is reliable across the open hybrid cloud. An example could be telecommunications service providers who need to deploy RAN Distributed Unit (DU) in locations where the smaller footprint is needed, with the controller aggregating multiple DU locations and hosting the supervisor nodes in the central unit.
Beyond the new capabilities within its portfolio of hybrid cloud technologies, Red Hat also maintains an extensive partner ecosystem for complete enterprise-grade edge deployments. Recent announcements with Samsung and NVIDIA showcase how these collaborations help extend Red Hat’s edge leadership across a myriad of enterprise use cases to support critical edge-focused workloads, including AI and 5G.