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DIY Carrier Grade Linux with Debian

timothy posted more than 8 years ago | from the cool-for-your-home-switchboard dept.

75

An anonymous reader writes "Carrier Grade Linux, once the domain of big-bucks Bells and commercial software vendors, just became more attainable for universities, companies running high-availability web services, and average Linux hackers interested in learning what goes into the world's most reliable, maintainable, and available systems. The Debian project, backed by HP, has launched the Debian-Carrier Grade Linux subproject, and registered Debian-CGL with version 2.02 of the CGL spec. LinuxDevices has created a simplified version of the registration form that lets you see which Debian packages to apt-get, and which packages you'll have to download and compile out side of Debian, in order to get your own Carrier Grade Linux setup."

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carrier-grade linux (3, Funny)

spud603 (832173) | more than 8 years ago | (#15473947)

An excellent example of the clarifying power of hyphens.

Carrier grade? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474003)

Personally I'd rather wait for torpedo grade Linux.

Re:Carrier grade? (2, Funny)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474032)

Personally I'm waiting for Food Grade Linux.

Re:Carrier grade? (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474202)

Yeah, theres no information here [wikipedia.org] on whenever or not penguins are edible

Re:Carrier grade? (2, Funny)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 8 years ago | (#15477258)

theres no information here on whenever or not penguins are edible

Yes, they are edible, and have been on the menu for a long time. http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/antarctica2/ask/new/Peng uins_as_food_for_humans.txt [nasa.gov] The flavour is ok - sort of halfway between dolphin and bald eagle.

Re:Carrier grade? (1)

beezly (197427) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474042)

You want a Linux designed to blow up and destroy ships?

Re:Carrier grade? (1)

Tacvek (948259) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474127)

You want a Linux designed to blow up and destroy ships?
It seems you missed the OP's point. Torpedo-Grade Linux can sink Carrier-Grade Linux. The air-based assult weapons of Carrier-grade Linux can cripple your communications network (WIFI-jamming, and causing your Blue Tooth to fall out), so being able to defend your network is very important.

Re:Carrier grade? (3, Funny)

jc42 (318812) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474687)

You want a Linux designed to blow up and destroy ships?

Even if we get this capability in linux, it'll be ridiculed for being years behind Windows [gcn.com] . (That's one of about 1.4 million online pages about this incident.)

It's sorta like the constant chant that linux "isn't ready for the desktop" because it doesn't treat its users as horribly as Windows does. Similarly, linux can't be considered "battlefield ready" until it can duplicate the disasters that the military has come to expect from their software.

Re:Carrier grade? (1)

soapee01 (698313) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474250)

That's cool, but my carrier grade linux is running a counter measures kernel [mit.edu]

I had no idea what carrier grade means (5, Informative)

Nate Fox (1271) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474015)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrier_Grade_Linux [wikipedia.org]

Carrier Grade Linux' is a set of specifications which detail standards of availability, scalability, manageability, and service response characteristics which must be met in order for Linux to be considered "carrier-grade" (i.e. ready for use within the telecommunications industry). The term is particularly applicable as telecom converges technically with data networks and commercial off-the-shelf commoditized components such as blade servers.

Re:I had no idea what carrier grade means (1)

flyweight_of_fury (972871) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474364)

Heh, how about that - I always thought 'carrier' grade refered to RFC 1149 [rfc.net]

Re:I had no idea what carrier grade means (3, Funny)

jc42 (318812) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474573)

Well, my first thought was "Hey, linux isn't just for toasters anymore; now they're putting it into air conditioners."

I do wonder how long it'll be before Carrier [carrier.com] sends them a C&D letter.

Ubuntu (1)

infosec_spaz (968690) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474020)

WOW!! I wonder when someone will chime in about Ubuntu already being ahead of Debian on this....3,2,1...

Re:Ubuntu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474343)

without debian there wouldn't even be a ubuntu

Re:Ubuntu (1)

xski (113281) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476461)


I guess you didn't get the joke.

For those of you who don't know... (5, Funny)

vishbar (862440) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474037)

"Carrier-grade" means that the server pipes all incoming data directly to the NSA.

Wikipedia (4, Informative)

flood6 (852877) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474039)

I was lost as hell over this summary and even TFAs. Here's some help [wikipedia.org] , apparently "Carrier-Grade" refers to telecommunications carriers, which can typically accept no more than 30 seconds to 5 minutes of downtime per year from their servers.

Re:Wikipedia (3, Insightful)

smbarbour (893880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474148)

Hmmm... Let me know when someone finds a "carrier-grade" carrier. I have yet to find any carrier with 5 minutes or less of downtime per year. Our current carrier is at approximately 24 hours of downtime per quarter-year.

Re:Wikipedia (2, Informative)

parc (25467) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474383)

You're mistaking carrier-grade voice service with a data SLA.
Carrier-grade services require that a telco provide dialtone, routing, completion, and ring within certain time limits a certain percentage of the time. In all my years of dealing with telcos, I've only missed a dialtone twice. I've gotten failed routing far more often, but still well within 99.999% of the time. My data circuits, on the other hand, have failed often.

Re:Wikipedia (1)

smbarbour (893880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474694)

At least one of our PRI lines will go down for a day or two once a year. Maybe it doesn't count for the "carrier-grade" services when it's a problem with the physical media. SBC generally has to replace the cable run once per year (although I'm not sure why).

Think of it this way (1)

brokeninside (34168) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475037)

You should check your contract. Three nines of service is nine hours of (unscheduled) downtime per year. The vast majority of contracts will specify an SLA of four or five nines and you're barely getting three.

Re:Think of it this way (1)

WNight (23683) | more than 8 years ago | (#15477799)

Hell, that's great. It could be Telus, they struggle to deliver three sevens.

"Lucky seven, come on lucky seven!"

Re:Wikipedia (1)

ffoiii (226358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475110)

It all depends on what your SLA is with the carrier. Having worked for a wireless telco, I can assure you that outages are not taken lightly and that availability is a very high priority. Outages for a customer when a single line get cut or even for several if a minor trunk fails are not that uncommon, it's a crazy world we live in and few people are willing to pay for multiple connection points to different hubs. But unplanned outages of any hardware or software element at a switching station or hub are rare and routing from hubs to switching stations is redundant in many ways. That doesn't mean that marketing doesn't overpromise, but engineering is held to very high standards in terms of uptime and availability. ffoiii

Re:Wikipedia (2, Insightful)

rcw-work (30090) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474667)

Hmmm... Let me know when someone finds a "carrier-grade" carrier. I have yet to find any carrier with 5 minutes or less of downtime per year.


Telcos feel they need 99.999% uptime from their equipment in order to provide you with a much lower level of service - typically 99.9% for a T1 or an analog voice line, occasionally 99.99% for a set of redundant circuits.


Our current carrier is at approximately 24 hours of downtime per quarter-year.


That's roughly 99%. If this is a T1, you should be able to do ten times better. Your SLA should provide a clause to escape your contract if it's really that bad. However, find out what the downtime is caused by - if it's local loop issues, then it's not the CLEC's fault, it's the ILEC's fault and you're still stuck with their wiring no matter who you choose. The best thing to do in that circumstance may be to demand a different physical circuit from your existing CLEC.

Telecom carrier? (2, Interesting)

PhYrE2k2 (806396) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475155)

Telecom carrier? I'd doubt it. Internet service provider- fine- but they're not a carrier.

Telecom carriers are Long Distance providers, and Ma-Bell providers around the globe. They are the ones that provide power into your home for your phone service as well as the service itself. They are the ones that do switching entirely on closed circuts.

Carrier grade is usually coined as 5-9's (9.9999%) which is friggin amazing. It's what the systems are designed for, and they usually pull it off.

-M

Re:Telecom carrier? (1)

cptgrudge (177113) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475343)

Carrier grade is usually coined as 5-9's (9.9999%) which is friggin amazing. It's what the systems are designed for, and they usually pull it off.

Yeah. Amazing they're still in business.

Re:Telecom carrier? (1)

smbarbour (893880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476491)

The problems we have are always in the SBC-owned lines. Oddly enough though, it's never on the T1 going to our connection to the backbone (Technically, we are our own ISP). It's always on either the voice PRIs or the point-to-point T1s. The problem is always a physical problem in the lines between our building and the origin of the lines (which is at the Motorola HQ a couple blocks away) Sometimes they just switch some pairs around. Other times it requires a new cable run.

Re:Telecom carrier? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15482798)

"Carrier grade is usually coined as 5-9's (9.9999%) which is friggin amazing"

Wow!

So they claim they can be up even more than a month per year!

Friggin' amazing!

Re:Wikipedia (2, Insightful)

jc42 (318812) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474820)

[A]pparently "Carrier-Grade" refers to telecommunications carriers, which can typically accept no more than 30 seconds to 5 minutes of downtime per year ...

Well, if we measure this in a way comparable to the way that phone companies measure uptime, it'll mean measuring the time that the OS responds to pings. A machine that is a total zombie, with no processes making any progress, will be considered "up" if you can ping it from a nearby machine.

After all, we are all familiar with phone systems that give a dial tone (i.e., is "up") but can't make calls, or makes them but doesn't transmit sound in one direction, or has so much noise that the speech is unintelligible. But none of these problems are considered "downtime"; the most common definition of "up" is providing a dial tone within N seconds.

Since a recent upgrade, my wife's Mac Powerbook has repeatedly gotten into a state that it doesn't respond do any input except mouse motion. We can show it's alive by movingg the mouse and watching the pointer move on the screen. But button clicks or keyboard input have no effect. I can ping it from another machine, but I can't telnet or ssh to it. The on-screen clock changes once a minute. I'm sure that Apple would consider this to be "uptime" for OS X, along the lines of the phone companies' way of measuring their 6-nines "uptime". And when we finally give up and reboot it, that's not considered "downtime" either, since it was done intentionally by the user.

Something very similar happened on my RH linux box a year or so back. But I can't replicate it.

not even close (1)

brokeninside (34168) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474967)

Carrier grade means not only uptime of the machine, but also that the machine correctly responds to requests within the limits set out in a Service Level Agreement (SLA).

But note that telcos usually only offer service with an SLA to customers paying through the nose.

Re:Wikipedia (2, Interesting)

Khyber (864651) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476762)

The on-screen clock changes once a minute.

Could that be simply because OSX and Mac OS (versions 9 and below,) do *NOT* show the seconds that pass by? *points to his default-install 72-D version iBook running OSX 10.2.8 and his Powerbook 190c running Mac-OS 8*

Debian Is Top Dog (3, Insightful)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474059)

Debian has long been 'the example' IMHO. RedHat got all the fame and glory, but Slackware and Debian really showed what Linux should be like.

I just wish all these projects (i.e. ubuntu) that base off of debian would give them more credit.

Hey, how did you know ubuntu is debian based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474122)

Oh yeah, they tell you straight forward on the website.
What was your complaint again?

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (4, Insightful)

JerkBoB (7130) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474166)

I just wish all these projects (i.e. ubuntu) that base off of debian would give them more credit.

How?

From About Ubuntu [ubuntu.com] :

Ubuntu is a free, open source operating system that starts with the breadth of Debian and adds regular releases (every six months), a clear focus on the user and usability (it should "Just Work", TM) and a commitment to security updates with 18 months of support for every release.


It's right there in the first sentence... Perhaps you want a large blinking banner at the top of ubuntu.com?

A large number of the Ubuntu devs are (wait for it...) Debian devs, too. Ubuntu regularly contributes back to Debian. I'm sure there are political squabbles, but to say that Ubuntu doesn't give credit to Debian is nonsense.

Bleh.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (0, Troll)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474284)

Ok... Ubuntu was a bad example on my part.

There were a number of distributions about 4 years ago, many of which have 'folded' by now that would initially claim "FooLinux based on Debian".

Ok great.

But then they'd go on to say "FooLinux's innovative package system called Foomaptic-get" which was a symlink to apt-get or aptitude, and it was pointed at FooLinux's mirror of Debian unstable, everything renamed. Stuff like that.

So I don't have other examples or sources, which makes my point appear weak and therefore I'm an asshat. This is Slashdot. Hit PgDown a couple of times and it will have already turned into an Apple Fanboy Dickwaving discussion anyways.

However, I still stand by my statement that IMHO Debian has their shit together the most out of all the rest of the Linux systems.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

skiflyer (716312) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474244)

Ubuntu isn't secretive about it all... anyone who knows even close to enough to do anything with the knowledge that Ubuntu et al are based on debian (and that includes financial donations as well as coding efforts/support/whatever) is more than well aware of the relationship.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (2, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474369)

"Debian has long been 'the example' IMHO. RedHat got all the fame and glory, but Slackware and Debian really showed what Linux should be like."
That is your opinion. There is no one size fits all.
Some people want a simple, easy to install Linux.
Some people want the latest and greatest Linux
Some people want the most stable Linux that will provide the most up time.
There are many projects that show what Linux should be like. Some projects are useless or redundant but if that makes there developers happy so be it.
Debian is a very good project but I would say that Ubuntu, Red Hat, Suse, Gentoo, and Slackware are all good projects and each really shows what Linux should be like. Flexible and adaptable.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474700)

Debian has long been 'the example' IMHO. RedHat got all the fame and glory, but Slackware and Debian really showed what Linux should be like.

Slackware showed us what, that Linux shouldn't have package management? And Debian has showed us what, that packages should be old and outdated?

I've moved to Ubuntu, like most of the rest of the world, but it doesn't make me believe that Debian is the ultimate Linux, or that it does everything better than everyone else.

Formerly I used Gentoo. Maybe you only get 1% more performance by compiling everything for your architecture, but you also get to link in support for what you want, and not for what you don't, in every program. And have it be done automatically. Fastest, most configurable. Unfortunately the tools they give you to apprehend portage (And the documentation for portage, and the tools) are weak to say the least.

I've also used RedHate. RH gained recognition for having the most turnkey Linux distribution. Unfortunately, RPM package management was pure crap until very recently and you have to use third-party tools to get a handle on it. RH feels the same way about their customers that Microsoft does; this is obvious because they terminated the supported free RH and now the free users use Fedora, the beta for RHEL. That's right, you get to do unpaid QA if you don't want to pay for RedHat. Well, that or you can use Whitebox linux, a debranded RHEL, if you want updates, but it's still unsupported. Have a nice day!

Slackware does nothing special. It's light in weight... whoop de doo. I want package management, and so does just about everyone else. If you don't, you should roll your own distribution to begin with. I suppose you could start with slackware for that...

Debian, as we covered previously, tends to have the oldest, most outdated packages around. There may be reasons for that but it does users little to no good.

SuSE is super-duper-bloatware.

Ubuntu seems to have the goodies, and it's what I'm using right now. It's debian with less shortcomings in terms of packages. The installer is very stupid. Ubuntu does not correctly detect my video settings, and I cannot change resolutions. Only my LCD's native res is working.

All Linuxes have shortcomings. Debian is no exception. Accept this.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474905)

And Debian has showed us what, that packages should be old and outdated?

This is not a drawback. Rethink this. It has a stable branch for a reason; if you don't like that aspect, then testing is for you.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15483792)

"if you don't like that aspect, then testing is for you."

Last time I checked "testing" didn't mean "yohooly modernesque"; it meant "being tested" as in "it has bugs and you can help us to discover them".

So no: "testing" is not for the ones that want to use modern software; it's for people who want to help the Debian development team to produce a good product by suffering its early bugs: Debian Stable.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#15484326)

It's a very similar experience to what you effectively get with Ubuntu, minus the installer and a few other niceities.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475090)

1) Slackware does have package management. It's called pkg_add.

2) Debian STABLE is old as dirt. Debian testing or unstable is the cutting edge. But iff you want zero-day software, you can always compile it yourself from source.

3) About the video resolution- If it won't auto-detect what you want, can you not just adjust /etc/X11/Xorg.conf?

And yes, I understand that not every linux is for everyone.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475412)

1) Slackware package management is a sad joke.
2) Stable doesn't have to mean ancient. Debian is well behind the curve of stable released versions. They're behind because they're testing their customizations. IMO they need either more package maintainers (I know, hard to come by) or less customization. Then again, this is why I don't use Debian, and I have that choice - but this is a seriously common complaint.
3) Actually, I've been trying to do this, but the configuration is somewhat strange (mode clocks look too tidy) and I really have to redo parts of it... and I've been too lazy. Still, it's very annoying :)

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

mattyrobinson69 (751521) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476124)

2)

I like 'unstable' distros - the latest and greatest, thats why I use ~x86. But on a server, I'm glad that I can use mysql4.1, php4.3, etc without having to upgrade, play around with updated config file formats, workaround new bugs, etc - thats why I use debian sarge on the webserver at work (I run FreeBSD 6.1 on my home server). The right tool for the right job.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15477171)

Oh and btw...

Even though I recognize your nick, your comments make it sound like Ubuntu is the new $fanboy_linux_distro. For awhile it was Mandrake, then Gentoo, then Knoppix, now Ubuntu?

I'm having a hard time keeping up, sorry. ;-)

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480396)

Ubuntu is DEFINITELY the new fanboy distribution. BTW, it was Redhat -> Mandrake -> Gentoo -> Knoppix -> Fedora -> Ubuntu... You left out the early part of the chain. Note that four of five of these got their popularity due to ease of installation and use... Fedora had the shortest honeymoon, in between the time when it came out and had the most eye candy, and the time when redhat started permanently destroying people's hardware.

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481065)

I knew RH was in there, but it's ancient history ;)

I've been running FreeBSD for the last three or four years so i haven't stayed up on all this :D

Oh, and don't forget the RedHat/Mandrake-->OSX Fanboy jump :D

Re:Debian Is Top Dog (1)

Respect_my_Authority (967217) | more than 8 years ago | (#15478169)

And Debian has showed us what, that packages should be old and outdated?
Debian, as we covered previously, tends to have the oldest, most outdated packages around. There may be reasons for that but it does users little to no good.

You are just showing your ignorance. Debian Stable has older packages than Ubuntu but they're also better tested and less buggy. Then there are Debian Unstable and Testing that both have newer packages than Ubuntu.

And both Debian Stable and Testing get security updates for ALL their packages while the Ubuntu Security Team doesn't provide any security updates for "universe," "multiverse" or "backport" packages.

So any way you look at it, Debian wins and Ubuntu loses. Debian has more, newer and better supported packages. In short, Debian has all the goodies without Ubuntu's shortcomings.

Arrgh my eyes! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474065)

i cannot read the new slashdot font. in IE6, it looks, simply, disgusting.
the formatting of articles is also all screwed up.

oh i know, 'get mozilla','use mozilla', blah blah blah. nah how about this instead?
spend time making sure your stuff works for several hundred million people on the technology
they have available to them in their workplace.

Re:Arrgh my eyes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474152)

Get Firefox!

Re:Arrgh my eyes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474169)

or just fix your IE6

looks fine on IE6 six here.

Personally, I prefer tomorrow's version (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474396)

looks fine on IE6 six here.

Personally, I perfer IE6 six VI. Of course, it's not due out until tomorrow.

(Note: This is only meant as a lame joke. I use Firefox.)

CARRIER HAS ARRIVED (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15474106)

apt-get install interceptors

Re:CARRIER HAS ARRIVED (1)

Mathiasdm (803983) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474622)

Emerge submarine...
Submerge submarine...

mod parent up (1)

John Nowak (872479) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476014)

This is the funniest thing I've seen all week. /has played too much Homeworld

And now a word from our sponsors... (0, Offtopic)

DittoBox (978894) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474294)

This Linux distribution was TyphoidMary(TM)(R)(SM)(ETC.) Approved on the 5th of May, in the 2006th year of our LORD.

Re:And now a word from our sponsors... (1)

Mathiasdm (803983) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474580)

You forgot the hyphens.

Re:And now a word from our sponsors... (1)

DittoBox (978894) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474900)

Hey...why was that modded as off topic? Typhoid Mary was a "carrier"...get it?

Destroyer Class Linux (1)

Zombie Ryushu (803103) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474375)

I am a huge Babylon 5 Fan, and I always wanted to build a "Destroyer Class" Linux box meant to secure my networks from attack by hostile nodes.

Carrier-grade Windows? (2, Informative)

ortholattice (175065) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474515)

Although the concept struck me as amusing, given that carrier-grade requires 99.999 (5 nines) to 99.9999 (6 nines) percent reliability, still I couldn't imagine that MS would allow itself to be trumped by this.

And, sure enough: from Google, "carrier grade Linux" - 114000 hits, "carrier grade Windows" - 17 hits (but still, not 0). The top Windows hit is from 1998: "a Microsoft white paper available at SUPERCOMM '98 will discuss carrier-grade Windows NT Server-based systems." Well, at least they talked about it, you gotta give them credit for that. Haven't heard much about it since, though.

Re:Carrier-grade Windows? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474746)

I wonder what the reliability is like on NT/Embedded these days. I bet it's pretty damned hot. NT's Kernel has (or at least had) a lot going for it, not least a team of geniuses who put it together in the first place.

Re:Carrier-grade Windows? (1)

cfuse (657523) | more than 8 years ago | (#15478463)

Although the concept struck me as amusing, given that carrier-grade requires 99.999 (5 nines) to 99.9999 (6 nines) percent reliability, still I couldn't imagine that MS would allow itself to be trumped by this.

Show me standard pc hardware that is five 9s before you start worrying about Microsoft.

NO CARRIER (1)

Webmoth (75878) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474597)

So... does this spell the death ofNO CARRIER

Do we need this ? (2, Insightful)

amias (105819) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474939)


Seems like a good idea at first but if you have 5-30 minutes downtime per year
that means one very quick kernel patch per year . If you are really concerned
about uptime applying patches in a timely fashion is just as important as
hardening the system to start with.



Obviously starting with solid proven code should mean less patches are needed
but nobody is perfect and what about new functionality ?



That kind of uptime is IMHO more a function of your hosting environment and the
hardware you choose , this is going to be a waste of time for anyone but the
carriers who can afford it . You would do better to have multiple servers in seperate
locations , a nifty routing/caching setup and a sensible Develoment/Production regieme.



Still its a nice stick to beat microsoft with , even if it is a bit too bendy :)

Re:Do we need this ? (1)

Detritus (11846) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475255)

That's why you have redundancy and spares, so that you can take a system down for preventative maintenance, hardware maintenance and software updates, without interrupting service to the customer.

Re:Do we need this ? (1)

aschlemm (17571) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475535)

But how about being able to patch an application whiles it's running or being able to field debug an application without degrading performance while its running in production? That's why we need a CGE of Linux. Monte Vista Linux has had a CGE of Linux out for a while now but it's not a free distro. It will be interesting to see if Debian can provide the same features that Monte Vista CGE provides expect at no cost.

Re:Do we need this ? (1)

Flossymike (461164) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476845)

Wouldn't virtualisation alow for this, for instance moving a working system with zen, alow for this to happen?

Genuinely curious ...

Bragging Rights (1)

ffoiii (226358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15474950)

I can think of no reasonble purpose for me to have this, yet, I want it. Bad. "Sure that's a nice 64 way system, but dude, it's not even carrier grade." ffoiii

Co$t? (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475248)

And just what does CG cost the user? Just extra time and effort on his/her part, or out-of-pocket money for some of the modules and/or instructions?

Carrier grade doesnt count scheduled downtime. (3, Informative)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475326)

Thats the dirty little secret, scheduled downtime. As long as you schedule the downtime, its still carrier grade. I've yet to see a service even with maintenance windows stay up for a month. Service in terms of big pile of servers running multiple applications with a big fat database cluster behind it. YMMV.

for the most part I would be its the hardware (1)

aphaenogaster (884935) | more than 8 years ago | (#15475432)

With the exception of an OS we will not mention 'carrier grade' to me at least means top notch redundant and hotswappable hardware (all hardware). I am sure some of the self healing stuff in solaris helps it with being carrier grade however. As far as linux goes, I think it is already 'carrier grade' based on the equipment and demand. I have a fedora 3 server (coldfusion, mysql, apache2, cgi-perl stuff, sunray server) that has been going non-stop for ages and another fedora 4 with less traffic that has been going for a year now. I had a yellow dog purple imac(333) that rand for 480 days straight before the ethernet card puked.

Re:for the most part I would be its the hardware (1)

HankB (721727) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476533)

To some extent Linux is fault tolerant. Years ago I was running my firewall on an old Thinkpad 750Cs (Yeah... 25 MHz 486 ;) This was with a series 2.2 kernel. As I was preparing to leave for vacation it started making loud whining noises. And it does not have a fan. :( I warned my son tha the was likely to lose Internet connectivity and I would deal with it when I returned. Upon my return, I noted that the Thinkpad had gone silent. When I asked when it failed I got "It's still working." I logged in and found that the disk had failed, Linux had remounted it R/W and eventually it had spun down. The firewall kept humming along filtering packets for another several weeks until I got around to putting together another firewall.

-hank

Re:for the most part I would be its the hardware (1)

aphaenogaster (884935) | more than 8 years ago | (#15476754)

Amazing, I think the true test is always going to be on top notch equipment, built for the purpose. Since HP is dumping its own OS and moving to linux I find it not at all surprising that they are now trying to, perhaps, fud there way into some kind of ultra stable linux niche. Sadly all they really need to do is supply top notch support and they will be 99% of the way there.

TPV? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15477361)

So...to updgrade, do I need third party verification?

(Sorry, I work for Qwest.)

Why Carrier Grade Linux is Important (1)

unPlugged-2.0 (947200) | more than 8 years ago | (#15483675)

Wow,

Finally, A linux subject that the slashdot crowd is silent about. Since it references debian the ubuntu comments were inevitable.

In reality this goes far beyond a debian discussion and is actually great news for the business of linux. In general Carrier Grade OS's is a way of saying that the OS used for certain carrier/telecom applications must follow a certain set of rules and standards.

This is important because carrier grade linux has to support a ridiculous feature set in order to achieve guaranteed uptime status. The more distributions there are with these features the more they become into mainstream kernels.

Another key advantage is that most carrier grade OS's charge you an arm and a leg such as montavista, sun and others. This prevents the smaller players from really being able to get into the carrier business and offer services because of the exorbitant costs of such applications. However this doesn't really figure into most of the current American telecom companies but where it really does make an impact is in third world/developing countries. The telecom's there are either government run or private institutions that can only offer their services to the wealthy.

Combine a platform like this with an open source SIP server like http://www.sipfoundry.org/ [sipfoundry.org] and you have the makings of some lower priced and more ubiquitous VOIP solutions for developing countries.

I think that steps such as these are what will make linux such a key component in other countries where the infrastructure is not yet built and can be based upon the matureness of open source technologies.

Here is my synopsis of what CGL entails. The full article can be found here http://www.commsdesign.com/design_corner/OEG200208 27S0008 [commsdesign.com]

Overview
--------
The OSDL CGLWG (Carrier Grade Linux Working Group - whoo thats a mouthful) defines three main types of applications that carrier-grade Linux will support -- gateways, signaling servers, and management.

Categories
----------
To build an effective specification for the applications above, the CGLWG is working on seven categories: standards, platform, availability, serviceability, tools, performance, and security. Work within each of these categories is broken down into three priority levels: level 1 defines first release requirements, level 2 defines second release requirements, and level 3 defines future release requirements.

Category 1: Standards - IPV6, Posix etc etc

Category 2: Platform Requirements - Hot swappable devices, uptime, kernel hardware error correction blah blah

Category 3: High Availability - Hmm pretty self explanatory

Category 4: Serviceability
On the serviceability front, the CGLWG is currently trying to define requirements for resource monitoring, kernel crash dump and analysis features, structured kernel messages, dynamic kernel probing, hardware error logging, and remote access to the event log.

The best feature of CGL in my opinion

Category 5: Tools
Priority 1 in the tools category will focus on the development of debugger support for threaded programs, kernel debugger support, and a kernel crash dump analysis tool.

Second best feature

Category 6: Performance
In the performance category, priority 1 performance features required include millisecond real-time (less than 10-ms worst case latencies), pre-emptible kernel, RAID 0 (striping), application pre-loading, and a scaling analysis and report to identify scaling bottlenecks.

Category 7: Security
The current version (V1.0) of the carrier-grade Linux specification does not have any requirements for security, but this will be addressed in a future version of the document. Security is recognized by the CGLWG as a key component of high availability.

YIKES!!

So there it is CGL 101. It will enable small development teams to offer real solutions in the behemoth telecom field.

-------------
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