Stratus Using Linux: the Missed Story
By Mark Rais, senior editor Reallylinux.com
Many may have just glossed over a recent E-Week article regarding the use of Linux by a company named Stratus. To most, this was just a little piece that scrolled along on LinuxToday.com and disappeared into the ether.
However, there is something very encouraging and substantive behind this story that should not be missed. The Linux community should be aware that Stratus is one of the leading true fault-tolerant hardware vendors, with clients being Banks and Telecom companies. These are contexts in which fault tolerance is not just a marketing slogan, but an absolute necessity.
In my time at AOL I personally learned what true fault tolerance was about. Stratus machines are built like tanks and tolerate all sorts of ridiculous environmental issues. One morning, our server room flooded and the OPS personnel had to jack the servers up out of the water onto carts, the wires still hanging from the sides.
The production servers kept on chugging along with no issues as the maintenance crew air dried the floor.
So what is the big deal about Stratus announcing that they have adopted RedHat Enterprise Linux for their t30 and t60 series servers?
Knowing and having used Stratus servers, the company is a strong proponent of the principle of "Continuous Processing" where uptime is guaranteed with hyper-redundant hardware. Stratus has also put years of research and development into its own UNIX like OS called VOS (Stratus Virtual Operating System) for fault tolerant contexts.
When such a company, fixated on true fault tolerant hardware, having spent years developing their own OS, begins integrating Linux into its server line, that's saying something significant.
Significant is Stratus' own statement from the press release, noting for instance: "The entire Stratus T Series family now supports Red Hat-certified applications."
Also mentioned in the bowels of the press release, but not to be overlooked, Stratus notes: "Open, portable Linux applications can now run unchanged and unmodified on carrier-grade, continuously available servers."
This is another success story for Linux as a whole. It is yet another validation of what I've been saying about Linux in the enterprise.
Linux is not a secondary option, it is not a by product, it is instead a formidable, capable and overtly stable OS that is being adopted more and more into extremely high fault-tolerant environments. This is simply another story not to be missed regarding Linux stability and capability.