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Scientific Linux Vs. Centos: The Researcher’s Choice

Scientific Linux vs. CentOS: The Researcher’s Choice

what is centos

Scientific Linux and CentOS are popular Linux distributions derived from Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). Both distributions are well-suited for scientific and research environments due to their stability, security, and wide range of software packages.

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Scientific Linux is a Linux distribution developed by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL) specifically for scientific computing. It is based on RHEL and includes a wide range of scientific software packages, including Python, R, and MATLAB. Scientific Linux is also known for its long-term support, with each release supported for a minimum of 10 years.

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CentOS is a Linux distribution that is fully compatible with RHEL. It is developed by a community of volunteers and is not associated with Red Hat. CentOS is available in a wide range of variants, including minimal, standard, and cloud-optimized options. CentOS is known for its stability and security, and it is often used in enterprise environments.

Comparison of Scientific Linux and CentOS

Both Scientific Linux and CentOS offer advantages and disadvantages for researchers.

  • Scientific software packages
    Scientific Linux comes with a wider range of scientific software packages out of the box, while CentOS requires users to install scientific packages separately.
  • Long-term support
    Scientific Linux offers longer-term support than CentOS, with each release supported for a minimum of 10 years. CentOS provides support for 7 years for each major release.
  • Compatibility with RHEL
    CentOS is fully compatible with RHEL, which means that it can be used to run any software that is certified for RHEL. Scientific Linux is not fully compatible with RHEL, but it does provide a high level of compatibility.

Recommendation

The choice between Scientific Linux and CentOS depends on the specific needs of the researcher.

  • If you need a Linux distribution with a wide range of scientific software packages and long-term support, then Scientific Linux is a good option.
  • If you need a Linux distribution that is fully compatible with RHEL, then CentOS is a good option.## Scientific Linux Vs. CentOS: The Researcher’s Choice

Scientific Linux (SL) and CentOS are two popular Linux distributions used in academic and research environments. Both systems have their strengths and weaknesses, and the choice of which one to use depends on the specific needs of the user.

Executive Summary

In this paper, we will compare and contrast Scientific Linux and CentOS, highlighting their key features and discussing their suitability for different use cases. We will also provide a comparative analysis of the two distros based on the following criteria: – Stability – Security – Performance – Package management – Community support

Introduction

High-performance computing (HPC) is a rapidly growing field in the world today. New technologies continue to offer researchers a more cost-effective way of crunching large data sets, which helps them perform complex calculations or simulations at a much faster rate.As powerful as this technology has become, maintaining uniformity in the servers where the research calculations run is key to managing consistency in data analysis, application results, and the ability to reproduce results. A properly configured and tested Linux distribution is a key part of that consistency. Over the past several years, the scientific community has helped transform Linux, and more specifically Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), into a high-performance computing platform.

Scientific Linux

SL is a Linux distribution derived from Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). It is designed to be a stable and secure platform for scientific computing, and it is used by many high-performance computing (HPC) centers around the world.

Package Management

  • SL uses the Red Hat Package Manager (RPM) and yum package manager to install and manage software.
  • It has an extensive repository of scientific software, including packages for high-performance computing, scientific visualization, and data analysis.

Community Support

  • SL has a strong community of users and developers, who provide support through mailing lists, forums, and documentation.
  • The SL team also provides technical support for users who subscribe to the SL Support Program.

Stability

  • SL is known for its stability and reliability, making it a good choice for production environments where uptime is critical.
  • It receives regular security updates and bug fixes from the RHEL team.

Security

  • SL includes a number of security features, such as SELinux, firewalld, and AppArmor, which help to protect the system from attack.
  • It also includes a number of security tools, such as ClamAV and Lynis, which can be used to scan for malware and security vulnerabilities.

Performance

  • SL is optimized for performance, and it includes a number of features that can help to improve the performance of scientific applications.
  • These features include the use of a low-latency kernel, a high-performance file system, and a network stack that is optimized for high-performance computing.

CentOS

CentOS is a Linux distribution derived from Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). It is a community-supported distribution, and it is not backed by Red Hat. CentOS is designed to be a low-cost, enterprise-grade Linux distribution, and it is used by a wide range of organizations, including businesses, governments, and schools.

Package Management

  • CentOS uses the Red Hat Package Manager (RPM) and yum package manager to install and manage software.
  • It has a repository of software that is compatible with RHEL, including packages for a variety of applications, including web servers, databases, and development tools.

Community Support

  • CentOS has a strong community of users and developers, who provide support through mailing lists, forums, and documentation.
  • The CentOS Project also provides technical support for users who subscribe to the CentOS Support Program.

Stability

  • CentOS is known for its stability and reliability, making it a good choice for production environments where uptime is critical.
  • It receives regular security updates and bug fixes from the Red Hat team.

Security

  • CentOS includes a number of security features, such as SELinux, firewalld, and AppArmor, which help to protect the system from attack.
  • It also includes a number of security tools, such as ClamAV and Lynis, which can be used to scan for malware and security vulnerabilities.

Performance

  • CentOS is not optimized for performance, but it can be tuned to improve the performance of specific applications.
  • It includes a number of features that can help to improve performance, such as a low-latency kernel and a high-performance file system.

Conclusion

SL and CentOS are both excellent choices for scientific computing. However, SL is the better choice for users who need a more stable, secure, and performant platform; for example, in large-scale research labs where SL may be combined with commercial software. CentOS is the better choice for users who want a more affordable lLinux operating system, especially in environments with high turn-over or budget constraints.

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Comments 14
  1. I think these two shoud be implemented as flags in the initramfs, rather than in separate install options. Is this possible?

  2. Why are we placing the kernel into isolinux capacity? You don’t have enough drivers and firmware to make it useful in real life

  3. Look into emergency mode, you have the choice to hit space and go into emergency mode where you can really get anything going. 😀

  4. Here you have a kernel parameter without spaces that we can use. Don’t use this kernel parameter simply because I haven’t tested it

  5. Why do you still consider Slackware as relevant? In fact Slackware should be compared to FreeBSD 7, FreeBSD 10 is more than a reincarnation of FreeBSD 6.

  6. Before building PXE I used to set “install_loader=all” why do we not set “install_loader=all” instead of having to run two mechanisms?

  7. I am amazed how, after all this time, the choice of a distribution for scientific computing keeps veering between CentOS and ScientificLinux even though they are essentially one and the same.

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