OpenSUSE comes to Linode

The announcement comes on the heels of the openSUSE Conference, where the growth was a key topic of discussion.

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openSUSE team releasing openSUSE Leap at SUSECon 2015

Credit: Swapnil Bhartiya

The openSUSE Conference in Nürnberg, Germany concluded on Sunday and today cloud hosting provider Linode announced that it is now offering openSUSE as an option on its virtual servers.

Linode customers can get openSUSE 13.1, which reaches end-of-life in November 2016. Also available is openSUSE 13.2, which reaches end-of-life between January and March of 2017. Once 13.1 and 13.2 expire, they'll no longer be available from the Linode Manager.

OpenSUSE Leap 42.1 will be available to Linode customers very soon, and Linode will offer openSUSE Leap 42.2, when it’s made available later this year. There are no plans to offer openSUSE Tumbleweed at this time.

The Linode announcement reflects the growth openSUSE has been witnessing recently, which was a key topic of discussion at the openSUSE Conference. During a conference presentation, Alberto Planas of the openSUSE team said that they were seeing 1,600 new installations of openSUSE per month.

Richard Brown, openSUSE Board Chairman & Technical Lead at SUSE told me that “number is based on an average growth rate over the last few years. If we apply that growth rate to openSUSE since the release of 13.1 we would expect approximately 450,000 users, but the current numbers are about 500,000, suggesting our growth is not only strong but accelerating.”

What’s leading this growth?

There are many factors that are now working in favor of openSUSE. Here are three significant ones: 

  • SUSE’s acquisition by Micro Focus gave it the financial support it needs to keep up with the growth. Micro Focus also took the step of promoting Nils Brauckmann, the GM and president of SUSE to the role of CEO of SUSE.
  • The relaunch of openSUSE Tumbleweed brought a true rolling release model to openSUSE (paradoxically, with stability). Tumbleweed has seen impressive growth since ffits relaunch.
  • Rebasing openSUSE Leap (the stable version of openSUSE) on SUSE Linux Enterprise means that the two distributions will be able to borrow from each other. As a result people will now be more interested in running openSUSE on servers. What’s interesting is that SLE itself is based on openSUSE, which makes openSUSE the upstream of SLE.

OpenSUSE on ARM and IBM servers?

Another major highlight of the openSUSE Conference was the announcement by Norman Fraser, CEO of SoftIron, of the release of a new ARM server running openSUSE Leap. “Many developers want more than what the DIY boards can offer but only need specific parts of the functionality delivered by full on enterprise systems,” Fraser said in a statement.

SoftIron is offering Overdrive 1000, an entry-level 64-bit ARM developer system that features the AMD Opteron A1100 series processor (4 x 64-bit ARM Cortex A57 Cores),  Quad core ARM64 SoC and 8GB DDR4 memory; 1TB HDD with fast direct-attach SATA 3.0 ports; 2x USB 3.0; Wirespeed 1Gbps throughput; Low and predictable energy consumption at 45 watts max. The server will retail for $599.

Another major highlight of the openSUSE Conference, which continues to show openSUSE’s acceptance in the enterprise landscape, was a talk by Jens Voelker of IBM Systems where he talked about the porting of openSUSE to the OS/390 platform. It must be noted that SLE was the first Linux distribution to support IBM’s LinuxOne machines when they were launched in 2015.

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