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Red Hat Summit in New Orleans - Day 2

Day 2 at New Orleans...

This day was full of keynotes and sessions again.  Met some interesting
people - a guy who's responsible for Linux at Dell, a lady who's job it
is to find authors for Linux books, and a guy who's with VMware in Palo
Alto and flew in just for the virtualization sessions.

The day started with the usual 3 keynotes but I didn't find them as
interesting as yesterday's sessions but still not too bad.  The best one
today went to Greg Stein from the Apache Foundation.  He contradicted
Martin Fink from HP who yesterday was talking about proprietary software
layering on top of the GPL software for vendors to make money and Stein
was saying that all proprietary software would be obsolete in 5 years.
I personally think that Fink is far closer to the truth.

Technically, I started with a RHEL 4 overview.  This was a 2-part
session with the first part being a pure non-technical overview and the
room was fairly empty (the session was also offered yesterday).  The 2nd
part was a technical discussion of some of the new features - not very
in-depth but not too bad given the very limited time remaining.

I then attended the virtualization session.  Although this was offered
yesterday, another 100+ people crammed the room to learn about Xen.
It's bleeding edge but looks like it holds a *lot* of promise.  It won't
replace VMware this year (or anytime in the next few years), but it's
going to be an exciting development on the Linux front.  As recently as
about 6 months ago, development was primarily done out of Cambridge
University.  Now, significant contributions are coming from IBM, HP, Red
Hat, SuSe, Unisys, Intel, and others.  Xen 3.0 is not stable yet but Rik
van Riel hoped it would be stable by Fedora Core 5.  It will ship as
part of Fedora Core 4 though for x86 users.  Rik also did the first demo
*ever* of a full virtualization install of an unmodified RHEL 3 install
under Xen (on non-production Intel VT hardware since the kernel has not
been modified for the Xen architecture).  He warned us that this may be
a "crash and burn" session but he generally pulled it off.  The install
completed CD#1 before he realized that there was no way to insert CD#2
:-).  He tried to boot a Knoppix CD but couldn't get very far at all
before the VNC "screen" went berserk.  The VMware developers aren't
going to lose their jobs anytime soon!

IBM is sponsoring the big Open Source on Parade party tonight.  Nobody
appears to know where it is - they just say to meet in the lobby and
follow the parade.  I hope I can find my way back :-)

>From talking to more people today, the Summit has been very worthwhile
and we're hoping that more will follow.  Some people were surprised that
there weren't basic sessions like Samba and Apache being covered but you
can't have everything, especially the first time around.

Generally this was a good day.  Good sesssions, good food, and good
friendly people to visit with and learn from.

Ed Wilts, RHCE
Mounds View, MN, USA
mailto:ewilts ewilts org
Member #1, Red Hat Community Ambassador Program

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