Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop

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Red Hat
Enterprise Linux Desktop

by Faulkner Staff

Docid: 00018928

Publication Date: 2109

Report Type: PRODUCT


Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), currently in version 8 released in May 2019,
offers web console,
application streams, and an intuitive graphical interface developed for the
commercial market. The RHEL Desktop offering  also
features continued integration with Windows infrastructure on-premise and
in Microsoft Azure, and functionality for storage cost controls. Also
included is platform manageability for Linux beginners, experts, and
Microsoft Windows administrators. This product profile looks at the key
features of Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop.

Report Contents:


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Red Hat’s Enterprise Linux Desktop is a comprehensive client system that
is part of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) line.

Related Faulkner Reports
Linux Operating Systems Tutorial

Enterprise Linux Desktop is one of a series of Linux desktop systems that
emerged as a contender to Microsoft’s near monopoly of the desktop
operating systems (OS) market. In fact, it is widely considered a leading
open source option for individuals and companies looking for an
alternative to running Windows desktop systems.

Enterprise Linux Desktop currently includes identity management,
flexibility, manageability, and security features. In particular, it
provides reduced boot times, improved laptop suspend, resume, docking
station, and projector support, and an update of all desktop applications.
It also provides support for the ISO standard OpenDocument format (ODF),
Microsoft Office import functions, and many other features for appearance,
ease of use, and functionality. OpenChange allows MAPI access to Microsoft
Exchange Server. XACE prevents unauthorized communications between
multiple windows on the same desktop.

The Red Hat approach is to offer a desktop system that includes a number
of Microsoft compatible technologies for a lower price. While Red Hat maintains
strict trademark rules to restrict the free redistribution of officially supported
versions of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, it freely provides its source code, allowing
third-party derivatives to be built and redistributed by stripping away non-free


Name: Red Hat Inc.
1801 Varsity Drive
Raleigh, NC 27606 USA
(919) 754-3700
Type of Vendor: Operating Systems Provider
Founded: 1993 (as ACC Corp., Inc.)
Service Areas: Worldwide
Stock Symbol: RHT (NYSE)

The Enterprise Linux Desktop OS can run on a host of laptop and desktop
systems, supporting all x86 (32-bit) and x86-64 (64-bit) processors from
Intel and AMD. Red Hat’s platform is also interoperable with Microsoft
formats, featuring technologies enabling the system to plug and play in a
Microsoft centric environment. The system also includes support for a
number of wireless network cards and – through NetworkManager – can be
configured with an organization’s existing network.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 offers a new web console that provides an
intuitive graphical interface for management, including the health of
virtual machines and overall system performance. It also offers in-place
upgrades, as well as Ansible DevOps that are included in System Roles to
facilitate automated workflows. RHEL 8 also includes Red Hat Insights,
which is a program that helps identify and remediate IT issues using
predictive analytics. This new version also offers Application Streams.

Desktop vs. Workstation

In addition to Enterprise Linux Desktop, Red Hat also offers Enterprise
Linux Workstation. While Desktop is designed for task workers, Workstation
is designed for advanced Linux users. In addition to the tools provided in
the Desktop variant, the Workstation variant supports a stand-alone
development environment to make provisioning and administratin of RHEL Desktop
more efficient and cost-effective. Workstation is optimized for high performance
activities such as graphics, animation, and scientific computing. End users are expected to have local super-user
privileges or select super-user privileges.

Table 1 looks at some of Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop’s features.

Table 1. Enterprise Linux Desktop Features



Processor Support

Intel and AMD

Office Suite

Interoperability with Microsoft Office

Web Browser


E-Mail Applications

Microsoft Outlook and Thunderbird


IRC, Messaging Applications, VoIP

Wireless Networking

Wireless network card support,
configurations for printers and scanners

Configuration and Management

  • Network Update,
    Management, and Provisioning
    – Provided with
    subscription. It allows for deployment and management, from
    one system to thousands of systems.

  • Sabayon – Allows
    the desktop user environment to be standardized.

Smart Card Login

USB token for client authentication,
interactive login, and secure e-mail and Web browsing

Security and VPNs

  • Built-in firewall

  • Optional disk encryption

  • Kernel based IPsec

Laptop and Power Management

Support for Advanced Configuration and
Power Interface


Red Hat Network Update Management
service, and provisioning modules 


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Enterprise Linux Desktop can be purchased with 10 or 50 units for mass
deployments. It can be implemented in small and mid-sized office
environments, as well as in enterprise and commercial spaces. The platform
supports systems with up to one socket, at 4-GB memory.

Primary Desktop applications are productivity applications like Mozilla’s Firefox
and Thunderbird as well as OpenOffice.


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Enterprise Linux Desktop supports 32-bit and 64-bit Intel and AMD
architectures. The product supports single CPU systems. The Desktop has
also been certified to run on hardware systems from a number of vendors,
including desktops, notebooks, and workstations from Dell,
Hewlett-Packard, Acer, and Fujitsu. It offers Firefox as its default Web
browser. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 is available as a single kit on 64-bit
AMD, 64-bit Intel, IBM POWER, and IBM System z.


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Red Hat subscribers are entitled to production support:

  • Unlimited incidents
  • Available 24×7 around the world
  • Not limited to issue resolution – engineers are ready to help subscribers
    avoid issues from their inception
  • Extended relationship with partners
  • Rich content to guide subscribers through planning, deployment, and
    operational phases of Red Hat implementations
  • Customer Portal provides access to information.

Optional support programs are available for Technical Account Management
and developer support.


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Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop can be purchased with a Red Hat Network
Proxy or Satellite Server included. The one-year, self-support
subscription for the desktop edition is $179 USD. A standard subscription
offering unlimited support cases is $299.


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The Enterprise Linux Desktop competes with Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac
OS X, Solaris, and a variety of Linux-based desktop offerings.

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