"Linux will remain a key technology to watch next year, and
the action should begin in the first quarter following the release
of Version 2.4 of the Linux kernel, which should usher in
significant advances. Linux creator Linus Torvalds has said
the 2.4 kernel is likely to become available this month, so the
first 2.4-based Linux distributions should ship in the first
quarter of next year."
"The Linux 2.4 kernel development process has focused on
improving performance on larger machines and building in support
for new hardware options such as Universal Serial Bus and
architectures such as Intel Corp.'s 64-bit Itanium and IBM's
"Another important goal has been to improve SMP (symmetric
multiprocessing) performance. A new process-scheduling algorithm to
speed response time for network server applications such as Web
servers is in the works, as are an SMP-improved disk cache design
and a more SMP-capable networking layer. Developers have targeted
Web server performance with a kernel-level Web server called
khttpd. Another new Linux kernel-level Web server, Red Hat Inc.'s
Tux, posted spectacular results this year in Standard Performance
Evaluation Corp.'s SPECweb99 Web server benchmark."
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