Get the latest with SP3

Customer-driven innovation, engineering excellence, long-term business expertise and outstanding partnerships make SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z the logical choice for businesses, and the clear market leader for Linux on System z.

SUSE has worked with IBM on Linux for System z more closely—and much longer—than any other company. By collaborating with IBM engineering and you, our mutual customers, SUSE is typically at the forefront of introducing new features for System z into the mainstream Linux kernel. And with every new Service Pack, we focus on enhancements for the outstanding IBM System z platform.

With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z 11 Service Pack 3, our primary purpose is to:

  • Consolidate patches and updates
  • Deliver enhancements such as hardware enablement to the product
  • Maintain IHV and ISV certifications
  • Provide you with an incomparably stable platform

That's why many of the existing features have been taken even further. We worked to let you benefit from the unique capability to share resources within a single machine. And we added features to support the outstanding RAS hardware characteristics and to enhance the memory capabilities and transaction performance of System z.

But we have also implemented more than 20 new features that enhance the capabilities of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z.

Most of the advances and improvements in this release are a direct result of your collaboration with us and IBM, and our commitment to meeting your requirements. Here are just a few of the most important enhanced or new features you'll find in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z 11 SP3.

Hardware Exploitation

Leverage Cross Memory Attach Functionality for System z

Cross memory attach reduces the number of data copies needed for intra-node interprocess communication. In particular, MPI libraries engaged in intra-node communication can now perform a single copy of the message to shared memory rather than performing a double copy.

CryptoExpress4 - Device Driver Exploitation

With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP3 the z90crypt device driver supports the Crypto Express 4 (CEX4) adapter card.

CPACF Exploitation

This feature extends the libica library with new modes of operation for DES, 3DES and AES. These modes of operation (CBC-CS, CCM, GCM, CMAC) are supported by Message Security Assist (CPACF) extension 4, which can be used with z196 and later System z mainframes.

Backport GCC 4.7.x patches (SDK)

GCC has been updated to version 4.7.x for applications targeting EC12 processors. New instructions have been added to the compiler, and a new pipeline description has been added to generate optimized code.

Reliability, Availability, Serviceability

Fuzzy Live Dump for System z

With this feature, kernel dumps from running Linux systems can be created, to allow problem analysis without taking a system down. Because the Linux system continues running while the dump is written, and kernel data structures might change during the dump process, the resulting dump might contain some inconsistency. Nevertheless in most cases the dump is still useful.

Compare dump system with boot system

A dump system is not necessarily identical to the system that was booted. Linux guest relocation or suspend and resume activities might introduce problems. To help analyze such problems, a system dump now provides location information about the original Linux system.

Storage

Flash Express Support for IBM System z

Flash Express memory is accessed as storage-class memory increments. Storage-class memory for IBM System z is a class of data storage devices that combine properties of both storage and memory. This feature improves the paging rate and access performance for temporary storage, for example, for data warehousing.

Enhanced DASD Statistics for PAV and HPF

This feature improves DASD I/O diagnosis, especially for Parallel Access Volume (PAV) and High Performance FICON (HPF) environments, to analyze and tune DASD performance.

Performance

Leverage Cross Memory Attach Functionality for System z

Cross memory attach reduces the number of data copies needed for intra-node interprocess communication. In particular, MPI libraries engaged in intra-node communication can now perform a single copy of the message to shared memory rather than performing a double copy.

Libhugetlbfs support for System z

This feature enables the transparent exploitation of large pages in C/C++ programs. Applications and middleware programs can profit from the performance benefits of large pages without changes or recompilation.

System z Performance Counters in the Linux perf Tool

This feature provides simplified performance analysis for software on Linux on System z. It uses the perf tool to access the hardware performance counters.

Virtualization

Technical Preview: KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine)

KVM is a Linux kernel infrastructure virtualization solution for x86 hardware that includes the Intel or AMD virtualization extensions (Intel VT and AMD-V), and for the IBM POWER and IBM System z architectures.

On the x86 hardware architecture, SUSE introduced a technical preview of KVM with the general availability of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11. Since Service Pack 1, KVM is supported on this architecture.

KVM consists of a loadable kernel module, kvm.ko, that provides the core virtualization infrastructure, and a processor-specific module. KVM also requires a modified QEMU, a hosted virtual machine monitor that performs hardware virtualization, to connect to the I/O world of the hosting system.

With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z 11 SP3, we provide you with the opportunity to check out KVM on the System z hardware platform.

NOTE: Technical Previews are intended to allow early access to evolving technologies, which will potentially be integrated into future product releases or products. The purpose of including a technical preview is to help you see if an evolving technology can help you to grow your business, and to familiarize you with these new technologies and functions.

Usually, a technology shipped as a technical preview is sufficiently mature to be explored, but it might still undergo significant changes and updates. You are welcome to submit problem reports, and we ensure that we will take you serious and work on enhancing the technology. However, technologies shipped as a technical preview are not supported and may not be used for systems in production.

VEPA Mode Support

VEPA (Virtual Ethernet Port Aggregator) mode routes traffic between virtual machines on the same System z machine through an external switch. The switch then becomes a single point of control for security, filtering, and management.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z

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