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SUSE, Microsoft team up for Azure-tuned Linux kernel

Germany-based open source provider SUSE has collaborated with Microsoft to create a Linux kernel that is optimised for the Azure cloud platform.

In a statement, the company said its SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 on-demand instances run on a custom kernel that has enhanced performance, faster boot times and a smaller memory footprint.

“SUSE’s collaboration with Microsoft is based on meeting customers’ evolving needs, enabling innovation and minimising disruption to their business,” said Gerald Pfeifer, vice-president of Products and Technology Programs at SUSE.

“Optimised SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for Azure public cloud users is a direct result of SUSE’s open, open source approach to solving real-world customer challenges.”

K.Y. Srinivasan, general manager, Enterprise Open Source Group at Microsoft, said: “We’ve worked closely with SUSE to ensure customers using SUSE Linux Enterprise Server have a first-class experience with Microsoft Azure.

“The new Azure-tuned kernel allows those customers to quickly take advantage of new Azure services such as Accelerated Networking with SR-IOV, Write Accelerator and other functionality on a cadence that aligns with the Azure engineering team’s release cycle.”

SUSE said customers could expect measurable performance benefits, including a potentially 25% faster network throughput and a 23% reduction in average latency.

By default, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 instances on Azure will run on this custom-tuned kernel, although it can be easily switched back to the standard kernel using the package manager, Zypper.

Apart from the custom kernel, Azure customers using SUSE Linux Enterprise Server are also claimed to be able to benefit from a number of tools and resources for cloud-native deployments that are part of the SUSE Public Cloud Module, such as managing Azure resources from a Linux command prompt.


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