Yellow Dog Linux

Yellow Dog Linux was a free and open-source operating system for high-performance computing on multi-core processor computer architectures. It focuses on GPU systems and computers using the POWER7. YDL was developed by Fixstars. Yellow Dog Linux was first released in the spring of 1999 for the Apple Macintosh PowerPC-based computers. The most recent version, Yellow Dog Linux 7, was released on August 6, 2012. Yellow Dog Linux lent its name to the popular YUM Linux software updater, derived from YDL's YUP and thus called Yellowdog Updater, Modified.


Yellow Dog Linux was based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux/CentOS and relied on the RPM Package Manager. Its software included applications such as Ekiga, GIMP, Gnash, gThumb, the Mozilla Firefox Web browser, the Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail and news client, the productivity suite, Pidgin, the Rhythmbox music player, and the Noatun and Totem media players.
Starting with YDL version 5.0 'Phoenix,' Enlightenment was the default desktop environment in Yellow Dog Linux, although GNOME and KDE were also included.
Like other Linux distributions, Yellow Dog Linux supported software development with GCC, the GNU C Library, GDB, GLib, the GTK+ toolkit, Python, the Qt toolkit, Ruby and Tcl. Standard text editors such as Vim and Emacs were complemented with IDEs such as Eclipse and KDevelop, as well as by graphical debuggers such as KDbg. Standard document preparation tools such as TeX and LaTeX were also included.
Yellow Dog Linux included software for running a Web server, database server, and network server. Additional software was also included for running an enterprise server or a compute server or cluster, although two separate products from Terra Soft Solutions, called Yellow Dog Enterprise Linux and Y-HPC, were specifically targeted toward those applications.
Although several other Linux distributions support the Power ISA, Yellow Dog Linux was distinguished for its focus on supporting the Apple Macintosh platform before the Apple–Intel transition. Before this transition, Terra Soft Solutions held the unique distinction of being the only company licensed by Apple to resell Apple computers with Linux pre-installed. Full support for AirPort, and partial support for AirPort Extreme, are also built into Yellow Dog Linux, as are support for Bluetooth and support for accessing the Internet over cellular phones.
Following Apple's transition to Intel processors exclusively in their Macintosh line of computers, Yellow Dog Linux retargeted version 5 and later to support the Sony PlayStation 3 and IBM pSeries platforms extensively, while retaining its longstanding support for PowerPC-based Apple hardware.


Yellow Dog Linux was sold by Fixstars, who also marketed Sony PlayStation 3 consoles, IBM workstations, and servers with Yellow Dog Linux pre-installed. As is the case with most other Linux distribution vendors, a portion of the revenue from the sale of those boxed distributions went toward development of the operating system and applications, which are made available as source code under various free and open-source licenses.
A notable application of YDL on PlayStation 3 consoles was Gaurav Khanna, a professor in the Physics Department at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth built a message-passing based cluster using 16 PS3s. This cluster was the first such cluster that generated published scientific results. Dubbed as the "PS3 Gravity Grid", this PS3 cluster performs astrophysical simulations of large supermassive black holes capturing smaller compact objects. Khanna claims that the cluster's performance exceeds that of a 100+ Intel Xeon core based traditional Linux cluster on his simulations. The PS3 Gravity Grid gathered significant media attention through 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.


The following table summarizes the release history of Yellow Dog Linux: