Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7.4 was released on Tuesday, August 1st. The update brings new automation capabilities, enhanced workload security and enhanced performance for traditional and cloud-native applications.
Jim Totton, a Vice President at Red Hat, said:
“The modern enterprise will not be solely based in physical servers or cloud services; rather, the path to digital transformation weaves across four distinct technology footprints. The latest version of the world's leading enterprise Linux platform support each of these deployment methodologies with new security features, improved performance and introduces new automation capabilities to cut through the inherent complexities of heterogeneous data centres.”
With regards to security, the following items are new in RHEL 7.4:
- Updated audit capabilities to help simplify how administrators filter the events logged by the audit system, gather more information from critical events and to interpret large numbers of records.
- USB Guard, a feature that allows for greater control over how plug-and-play devices can be used by specific users to help limit both data leaks and data injection.
- Enhanced container security functionality with full support for using SELinux with OverlayFS helps secure the underlying file system and provides the ability to use docker and use namespaces together for fine-grained access control.
In terms of performance, the following enhancements have been made:
- Support for NVMe Over Fabric helps to provide customers with increased flexibility and reduced overhead when accessing high performance NVMe storage devices located in the data centre on both Ethernet of Infiniband fabric infrastructures.
- General enhancements to RHEL's performance when deployed on the public cloud, highlighted by decreased boot times to better enable mission-critical applications to start sooner, and support for the Elastic Network Adapter (ENA) on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to enable new network capabilities.
The update also includes improvements for Linux containers in RHEL Atomic Host:
- Improved security without sacrificing performance, thanks to integrated support for SELinux and OverlayFS, as well as full support for the overlay2 storage graph driver.
- Full support for package layering with rpm-ostree, providing a means of adding packages like monitoring agents and drivers to the host operating system.
- The introduction of LiveFS as a Technology Preview, which enables users to install security updates and layer packages without a reboot.
RHEL 7.4 is the fifth release in the RHEL 7 series. RHEL 7 will continue to receive updates until June 30th, 2024, bringing the total life span of RHEL 7 to just over 10 years for those not wishing to pay for extended support.
Source: Red Hat