Among the new command-line tools are Koji, which takes inputted data and produces code ISO images that are Linux distributions; the Fedora Live CD Creator, which allows the creation of a live CD, DVD or other image; and Revisor, a graphical user interface that sits atop Koji or the Fedora Live CD Creator.
"There is a new building system for Fedora 7," said Max Spevak, the Fedora project team leader at Red Hat. "Anybody in the world can now take some subset of the code and run it through the same tools and generate their own version of Fedora, as Red Hat does."
"Fedora represents the upstream of Red Hat Enterprise Linux," so it is the platform on which the company will continue to try out new features for possible later inclusion in its enterprise Linux products, Spevak said. "Anytime we can give people in the community more opportunities to directly influence what goes into Fedora is good for Red Hat Enterprise Linux."
Also included in Fedora 7 are new Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) and Qemu virtualization technologies in addition to Xen virtualization, which are all manageable using the included Fedora graphical virtualization manager.
Red Hat hopes the more open Fedora 7 distribution encourages development of a whole new range of Fedora-based appliances. Using the more open community as a resource, appliance developers could use Fedora 7 to build whatever functions they want into appliances more easily than before, DeKoenigsberg said. "The thinking is, there is an appliance market that is just developing," he said. "This positions us to pursue that stuff."
Fedora 7 can be downloaded free from the Fedora Project Web site.
Also downloadable will be the first bootable live CD version of Fedora, which will allow users to try the software without having to install it on their computers. "We've been working on it for a long time," DeKoenigsberg said. "This is the first version we feel is good enough to call Fedora."
The previous version, Fedora Core 6, has more than 3 million installations around the world, according to Red Hat.