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Linux for Big Iron

Archives of linuxvm.org

03/02/2005 - Chris Little posted a pointer to an IBM case study/success story involving his department using Linux/390.

03/07/2005 - Carsten Otte talked about a new IBM-written HOWTO that talks about sharing file systems between Linux/390 guests on z/VM using the Execute-in-Place file system (xip): "How to Improve the Performance of Linux on z/VM with Execute-in-Place Technology (Linux Kernel 2.6 - April 2004 stream)," and "How to use Execute-in-Place Technology with Linux on z/VM."
Note the following comments from the IBM developerWorks page:
Consider the following when using the above "April 2004 stream" edition and tarball with the "October 2005 stream":

  • There is no separate xip2 filesystem for kernel 2.6.13 in the "October 2005 stream". Instead, the execute-in-place (xip) functionality has been integrated into the ext2 filesystem as a mount option and a DCSS block device node is now needed (e.g. "mount -t ext2 -o xip /dev/dcssblk0 /mnt").
  • The information about the handling of the xip2 filesystem no longer applies, but the other parts may still be useful.
  • See Documentation/filesystems/xip.txt and Documentation/filesystems/ext2.txt in the kernel source tree for general information.

03/07/2005 - Mark Post announced that Sine Nomine Associates had offered to let him use their bug tracking system for Slack/390 problem tracking. He said "you can open a problem report simply by sending an email to slack390@sinenomine.net. I'll get an email notification, and will know to look into it.

As long as the problem reporter does a 'reply' to any emails coming from the problem reporting system, those replies will be appended to the problem record."

03/13/2005 - A number of presentations from SHARE 104 in Anaheim, California have been added to the presentations page of this site.

  • Linux and Open Source: The View from IBM
  • Linux Platform Options - Selecting Linux on zSeries
  • File Serving Solutions Using Samba 3
  • Directory Serving Solutions using OpenLDAP
  • Virtualization in the Real World - A customer experience
  • Linux/390 System Management for the Mainframe System Programmer
  • Linux on zSeries Journaling File Systems
  • SCSI IPL for IBM zSeries Server
  • Replacing Windows Servers with Linux

03/13/2005 - Mark Post finished forward porting the developerWorks patches to the 2.4.29 kernel. He produced two versions, one set is complete through the -22 patch, and the other through the -24 patch. In both cases, it was verified that "they compile with the Slack/390 default kernel configuration, and IPL. No other testing has been done."

03/15/2005 - David Boyes announced that the presentations from yesterdays Hillgang meeting were now available on Sine Nomine's web site. Pointers to them have also been added to the presentations page of this site.

03/15/2005 - A z/Journal article, written by Mark Post, on commercial and no-cost Linux/390 distributions is now available online. He says "Unfortunately, it was submitted for publication well before I knew that the S/390[x] version of Tao Linux wasn't being maintained any longer. s/tao/centos/ as needed."

03/15/2005 - The "Binary Distributions" information from the left side of the main page has been removed, completely reworked, and transferred to a new page on the site. This should bring the page completely up to date in terms of what distributions are available for the mainframe, and which ones are being kept updated, etc.

03/17/2005 - Dave Jones contributed a presentation on "Accessing LINUX file systems from CMS" that he gave at the Metropolitan VM Users Association in January. It has been added to the presentations page on this site.

03/17/2005 - Neale Ferguson has uploaded a package of mono-1.1.4 RPMs for S/390 to the site. It's on the large side (~20MB), so be patient if you're on a dial up line.

03/21/2005 - Neale Ferguson has uploaded a new version of his cpint program, version 2.3.0. This version is for 2.6 kernels only. According to the change log, this version:

  • Fixes a problem when 32-bit apps on a 64-bit system attempt to use the ioctl call
  • Fixes a build problem with diag 0 driver on 64-bit systems
  • Registers with sysfs so that it can come under management of udev

03/21/2005 - Neale Ferguson found a new IBM Redpiece titled "Linux on zSeries: Samba-3 Performance Observations." The abstract states "This Redpaper was developed to provide readers with basic performance guidelines for Samba Version 3.0.5 on zSeries Linux and to give background information that can be used in configuring and tuning the Samba V3 environment. The data collected was developed using an IBM internal workload generator to simulate a heavy transaction load. The paper identifies parameters for optimum performance of Samba V3."

03/23/2005 - Gerhard Hiller of IBM reported the following updates on the DeveloperWorks web site:

  • April 2004 stream
    • kernel 2.6.5 recommended new features and bug fixes
    • s390-tools 1.4.0 with new features
    • New and updated manuals:
      • "Device Drivers, Features, and Commands" - updated with descriptions of new features
      • "How to use Execute-in-Place Technology with Linux on z/VM" - new for this stream
  • June 2003 stream
    • zfcp HBA API library 1.2 on the "Useful add-ons" page
    • An updated "Device Drivers and Installation Commands" manual with descriptions of how to use recent hardware features.

03/24/2005 - Neale Ferguson and Mark Post spotted some news coming out of Novell's Brainshare conference. The "Department of Transportation for the State of Oregon is migrating critical components of its driver's license management system to Novell's SUSE Linux Enterprise Server running on an IBM zSeries mainframe."

Steven Adams of ODOT provided a little more information: "Actually we have been running a bit longer on that system but the headline is a little misleading (the entire release explains it in detail). The Linux piece is a single, critical, component of the entire licensing system. When we originally spec'd it out we knew that the aged, vintage, OS2 system had to go and the cost of replacing that component with an Windows system would be costly (roughly 120k) we took it on in our shop. Turned out to be a pretty quick infrastructure piece and it's been solid and secure since I finished it up. It was a natural fit since all of the other system components, except the workstations, are CICS/HFS based."

03/25/2005 - Steve Gentry spotted a draft version of a new Redbook, "z/VM and Linux on zSeries: From LPAR to Virtual Servers in Two Days, SG24-6695." The abstract states:
This redbook describes how to roll your own Linux virtual servers on IBM zSeries under z/VM. It adopts a cookbook format that provides a clearly documented set of procedures for installing and configuring z/VM in an LPAR and then installing and customizing Linux. You will need a zSeries logical partition (LPAR) with associated resources, z/VM 5.1 media, and a Linux distribution. This book is based on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 (SLES9) for zSeries, and both 31-bit and 64-bit distributions are addressed.

03/26/2005 - Neale Ferguson has uploaded a package of mono-1.1.5 RPMs for S/390 to the site. It's on the large side (~21MB), so be patient if you're on a dial up line.

03/28/2005 - Jim Sibley spotted a new IBM document on transitioning from Linux/390 2.4-based systems to 2.6. The IBM Linux on zSeries page says "This book provides guidance for those who want take advantage of the latest Linux features, moving from the Linux 2.4 kernel to the Linux 2.6 kernel using the SUSE Linux or Red Hat distributions."

03/31/2005 - Peter Webb reported a short article that talked about Deutsche Bahn, Europe's biggest railway, migrating workload from 300 Intel servers to Linux/390.

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