Red Hat is out today with a beta release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 (RHEL 7), providing users with an early preview of new features set to become generally available later this year.
Among the new enhancements in RHEL 7.2 are improvements to OverlayFS, which is a useful component for container deployment. OverlayFS first landed in the upstream Linux 3.8 kernel, and it provides an overlay on top of the existing system filesystem, on which a container engine can run without needing to interact with the base filesystem.
On the security front, Red Hat is expanding its SCAP (Security Content Automation Protocol) capabilities with a Anaconda installer module. SCAP enables organizations to define and measure a deployment against a baseline of security configurations.
At the 2015 Red Hat Summit event, Denise Dumas, Vice President, Operating System Platform at Red Hat, explained that the plan for RHEL 7.2 is to enable enterprises to integrate SCAP profiles into the installation process.
RHEL 7.2 will also enhance crypto efforts by enabling system administrators to bind data to a local network, which will provide more options for centralized management.
Red Hat is now also improving its support for DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC), which provide cryptographic integrity for DNS zone information.
"Identity Management servers with integrated DNS now support DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC), a set of extensions to DNS that enhance security of the DNS protocol," the RHEL 7.2 release notes state. "DNS zones hosted on Identity Management servers can be automatically signed using DNSSEC. The cryptographic keys are automatically generated and rotated."
There are also a variety of performance monitoring tool enhancements in RHEL 7.2 that include improved detection of device-mapper disk names.
"The method used to obtain device-mapper device names has been updated and installation on disks which contain existing LVM metadata is now more reliable," the RHEL 7.2 beta release notes state.