LinuxPlanet: The Ultimate Install Fest: Linux on the IBM System/390

[ Thanks to Kevin
for this link. ]

“…It is a scene that’s been repeated endlessly, all around the
world. Only this time there is a slight problem: the company
mainframe won’t fit in the back seat!”

“By now just about everyone involved with Linux knows that,
among its many other ports, Linux is now available for IBM
System/390 (S/390) mainframe systems (seen in the accompanying
photo). If you have ever had the fun of installing it on an S/390,
you know that the first time through the process it can be quite
daunting. From the beginning, there is a gap in terminology. If you
are a mainframe administrator, you know all about how to allocate
DASD and LPARs, how to set up IUCV and SNA communications, and how
to IPL a few VMs–but the concept of grepping the stdout of sed
sounds like line noise to you! If, instead, you come from the UNIX
side of the house, the same logic applies but in reverse. The
problem with putting Linux on a mainframe is that you really need
to know both UNIX-like commands and mainframe administration.”

To help alleviate the knowledge gap, IBM engineers and
management in Germany came up with the idea of a Linux for S/390
“Install Fest” which would work almost like the local install fests
that are run by LUGs around the world.
The leader of the
Install Fest project is Alex Stark, Manager of Linux for S/390
Design and Development. At 35, Stark has the enviable job of
leading the team that develops new code for Linux on S/390
hardware. Stark’s team of 25 developers are fully dedicated to the
Linux on S/390 effort, and they saw this project as a way to get
closer to the customer and to learn how to improve the installation
process. At the same time they hope to spur even more interest in
the Linux for S/390 port, which has already seen over four thousand