Yellow Dog Linux
||This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2008)|
|Company / developer||Fixstars Solutions|
|Source model||Free and open source software|
|Latest stable release||7.0 / August 8, 2012|
|Supported platforms||Power Architecture, Cell|
|Kernel type||Monolithic Linux kernel|
|Default user interface||Enlightenment|
|License||GNU GPL, LGPL, others|
Yellow Dog Linux (YDL) is a free and open source operating system for high-performance computing on multi-core processor computer architectures. It focuses on GPU systems and computers using the Power Architecture (Power7). YDL is currently developed by Fixstars (which acquired Terra Soft Solutions in October 2008). Yellow Dog Linux was first released in the spring of 1999 for the Apple Macintosh PowerPC-based computers.
Yellow Dog Linux is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux/CentOS and relies on the RPM Package Manager. Its software includes user applications such as Ekiga (a voice-over-IP and videoconferencing application), GIMP (a raster graphics editor), Gnash (a free Adobe Flash player), gThumb (an image viewer), the Mozilla Firefox Web browser, the Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail and news client, the OpenOffice.org productivity suite, Pidgin (an instant messaging and IRC client), the Rhythmbox music player, and the Noatun and Totem media players.
Like other Linux distributions, Yellow Dog Linux supports software development with GCC (compiled with support for C, C++, Java, and Fortran), the GNU C Library, GDB, GLib, the GTK+ toolkit, Python, the Qt toolkit, Ruby and Tcl. Standard text editors such as Vim and Emacs are complemented with IDEs such as Eclipse and KDevelop, as well as by graphical debuggers such as KDbg. Standard document preparation tools such as TeX and LaTeX are also included.
Yellow Dog Linux includes software suitable for running a Web server (such as Apache/httpd, Perl, and PHP), database server (such as MySQL and PostgreSQL), and network server (NFS and Webmin). Additional software is also included for running an enterprise server or a compute server or cluster, although two separate products from Terra Soft Solutions, called Yellow Dog Enterprise Linux (for enterprise servers) and Y-HPC (for compute servers/clusters), are specifically targeted toward those applications.
YDL version 6.2 was released on 29 June 2009.
Although several other Linux distributions support the Power Architecture, Yellow Dog Linux was distinguished for its focus on supporting the Apple Macintosh platform before the Apple–Intel transition. Before this transition, Terra Soft Solutions held the unique distinction of being the only company licensed by Apple to resell Apple computers with Linux pre-installed (or for that matter, with any operating system other than Mac OS X). Full support for AirPort (Apple’s implementation of the IEEE 802.11b-1999 wireless networking standard), and partial support for AirPort Extreme, are also built into Yellow Dog Linux, as are support for Bluetooth and support for accessing the Internet over cellular phones.
Following Apple’s transition to using Intel processors exclusively in their Macintosh line of computers, Yellow Dog Linux has now been retargeted to support the Sony PlayStation 3 and IBM pSeries platforms extensively, while retaining its longstanding support for PowerPC-based Apple hardware.
Yellow Dog Linux is sold by Fixstars who also market Sony PlayStation 3 consoles, IBM workstations, and servers with Yellow Dog Linux pre-installed. As is the case with most other Linux distribution vendors, a portion of the revenue from the sale of these boxed distributions goes toward development of the Linux operating system and applications, the results of which are made available as source code under various free and open source licenses.
As an interesting application of YDL on PlayStation 3 consoles: Gaurav Khanna, a professor in the Physics Department of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth built a message-passing based cluster using 16 PS3s. This cluster was the first such cluster that generated published scientific results. Dubbed as the "PS3 Gravity Grid", this PS3 cluster performs astrophysical simulations of large supermassive black holes capturing smaller compact objects. Khanna claims that the cluster's performance exceeds that of a 100+ Intel Xeon core based traditional Linux cluster on his simulations. The PS3 Gravity Grid gathered significant media attention through 2007, 2008, 2009  and 2010.
The following table summarizes the release history of Yellow Dog Linux:
- Source: DistroWatch
|Version||Name||Release date||Linux version||Notes|
|1.1||?||8 March 1999||2.2.15|
|1.2||?||4 March 2000||2.2.19|
|2.0||Pomona||17 May 2001||2.4.10|
|2.1||Fuji||17 October 2001||2.4.18|
|2.2||Rome||22 March 2002||2.4.19|
|2.3||Dayton||23 June 2002||2.4.20|
|3.0||Sirius||19 March 2003||2.4.22|
|3.0.1||"||17 September 2003||2.4.22||Fixes issue with RPMs in ver. 3.0|
|4.0||Orion||29 September 2004||?|
|4.1||Sagitta||2 February 2006||2.6.15-rc5|
|5.0||Phoenix||27 November 2006||2.6.16 ||Support for PlayStation 3 (Cell)|
|5.0.1||"||27 March 2007||2.6.17|
|5.0.2||"||14 June 2007||2.6.22-rc4||Support for IBM pSeries|
|6.0||Pyxis||5 February 2008||2.6.23|
|6.1||?||19 November 2008||2.6.27|
|6.1||Pyxis||1 February 2009||2.6.28|
|6.2||Pyxis||29 June 2009||2.6.29||http://ydl.oregonstate.edu/iso/RELEASE-NOTES|
|6.2.1 Enterprise for CUDA||Pyxis||2 March 2010||2.6.29||http://www.fixstars.com/en/company/press/20100302.html|
|6.3 Enterprise for CUDA||?||14 February 2011||?|
|7.0||?||8 August 2012||2.6.32|
- Yellow Dog Enterprise Linux for CUDA Offers Lower Cost or Ownership, Better GPU performance with integrated Eclipse plug-i, Greater Integration and Reliability, Comprehensive support for both Linux and CUDA and Flexibility by supporting several versions of CUDA; Fixstars press release, March 2, 2010.
- Yellow Dog Linux Web site.
- "PS3 Gravity Grid". Gaurav Khanna, Associate Professor, College of Engineering, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
- "Astrophysicist Replaces Supercomputer with Eight PlayStation 3s". Wired. 17 October 2007.
- "PS3 cluster creates homemade, cheaper supercomputer".
- Highfield, Roger (17 February 2008). "Why scientists love games consoles". The Daily Telegraph (London).
- Peckham, Matt (23 December 2008). "Nothing Escapes the Pull of a PlayStation 3, Not Even a Black Hole". The Washington Post.
- "Playstation 3 Consoles Tackle Black Hole Vibrations".
- "Playstation 3: A Discount Supercomputer?".
- "The Supercomputer Goes Personal".
- "The PlayStation powered super-computer". BBC News. 4 September 2010.
- Farrell, John (12 November 2010). "Black Holes and Quantum Loops: More Than Just a Game". Forbes.
- "[yellowdog-announce] Fixstars Releases YDL v6.2 with Xfce, USB install, and EPEL: Press Release 29 June 2009". 29 June 2009. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
- "[yellowdog-announce] Fixstars to Release "Yellow Dog Linux for CUDA"". 20 July 2010. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
- "[yellowdog-announce] Introducing the PowerLinux 7R2 Yellow Dog Appliance and Yellow Dog Linux 7". 8 August 2012. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
- Yellow Dog Linux on PS3
- Yellow Dog Linux home page
- Yellow Dog Linux at DistroWatch
- penguinppc.org – Linux on PowerPC site
- “Software Review: Yellow Dog Linux 5 for PlayStation 3” – BlogCritics Magazine review of YDL version 5.0
- “Yellow Dog Linux 5.0 Hands-on” – IGN.com review of YDL version 5.0
- “Yellow Dog Linux 4.0: Some Install Notes” – ppcnerds.org review of YDL version 4.0