Release Notes for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1

Version (2012-04-17)


These release notes are generic for all products that are part of our SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 product line. Some parts may not apply to a particular architecture or product. Where this is not obvious, the specific architectures or products are explicitly listed.

Startup and Deployment Guides can be found in the docu directory on the media. Documentation (if installed) can also be found below the /usr/share/doc/ directoy in an installed system.

This Novell product includes materials licensed to Novell under the GNU General Public License (GPL). The GPL requires that Novell makes available certain source code that corresponds to the GPL-licensed material. The source code is available for download at Also, for up to three years from Novell's distribution of the Novell product, upon request Novell will mail a copy of the source code. Requests should be sent by e-mail to or as otherwise instructed at Novell may charge a fee to recover its reasonable costs of distribution.

1. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
2. Installation
3. Features and Versions
3.1. Linux Kernel and Toolchain
3.2. Server
3.3. Desktop
3.4. Security
3.5. Network
3.6. Systems Management
3.7. Resource Management
3.8. Other
3.9. System z
4. Driver Updates
4.1. Network Drivers
4.2. Storage Drivers
4.3. Other Drivers
5. Other Updates
6. Support Statement for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
6.1. General Support Statement
6.2. Software, Which Needs Specific Contracts
6.3. Technology Previews
7. Software Development Kit
8. Update-Related Notes
8.1. General Notes
8.2. Update from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11
9. Deprecated Functionality
10. Infrastructure, Package and Architecture specific Information
10.1. Systems Management
10.2. Performance Related Information
10.3. Storage
10.4. Architecture Independent Information
10.4.1. Changes in Packaging and Delivery
10.4.2. Security
10.4.3. Networking
10.4.4. Cross Architecture Information
10.5. AMD64/Intel64 64-bit (x86_64) and Intel/AMD 32-bit (x86) Specific Information
10.5.1. System and Vendor Specific Information
10.5.2. Virtualization
10.6. Intel Itanium (ia64) Specific Information
10.7. POWER (ppc64) Specific Information
10.8. System z (s390x) Specific Information
11. Resolved Issues
12. Technical Information
12.1. Kernel Limits
12.2. KVM Limits
12.3. Xen Limits
12.4. Filesystems
12.5. Kernel Modules
12.6. IPv6 Implementation and Compliance
12.7. Other Technical Information
13. Documentation and Other Information
14. Legal Notices

Chapter 1. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is a highly reliable, scalable, and secure server operating system, built to power mission-critical workloads in both physical and virtual environments. It is an affordable, interoperable, and manageable open source foundation. With it, enterprises can cost-effectively deliver core business services, enable secure networks, and simplify the management of their heterogeneous IT infrastructure, maximizing efficiency and value.

The only enterprise Linux recommended by Microsoft and SAP, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is optimized to deliver high-performance mission-critical services, as well as edge of network, and web infrastructure workloads.

Designed for interoperability, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server supports open standard CIM interfaces and can be managed by any management solution utilizing CIM.

This modular, general purpose operating system runs on five processor architectures and is available with optional extensions that provide advanced capabilities for real time computing, high availability clustering, and running .NET applications on Linux.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is optimized to run as a high performance guest on leading hypervisors and supports an unlimited number of virtual machines per physical system with a single subscription, making it the perfect guest operating system for virtual computing.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is backed by award-winning support from Novell, an established technology leader with a proven history of delivering enterprise-quality support services.

With the release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack1 the now obsoleted SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 GA enters limited support status for the following 6 months, during which time Novell will continue to provide security updates and full support to maintain its customers' operations safe during the migration window. At the end of the six-month parallel support period, on 2010-12-15, support for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 GA will be permanently discontinued.

Chapter 2. Installation

  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server can be deployed in three ways:

    • Physical Machine

    • Virtual Host

    • Virtual Machine in paravirtualized environments

  • CJK Languages Support in Text-Mode Installation

    CJK (Chinese, Japanese, and Korean) languages do not work properly during text-mode installation if framebuffer is not used (TextMode selected in boot loader).

    There are three alternatives to resolve this issue:

    1. Use English or some other non-CJK language for installation and then switch to the CJK language later on a running system using YaST -> System -> Language.

    2. Use your CJK language during installation, but do not choose TextMode in boot loader using <F3>. Select one of the other VGA modes instead. Select the CJK language of your choice using <F2>, add "textmode=1" to the boot loader command-line and start Installation.

    3. Use graphical installation (or install over SSH or VNC).

  • Installation Using Persistent Device Names

    The installer uses persistent device names by default. If you plan to add additional storage devices to your system after the OS installation, we strongly recommend you use persistent device names for all storage devices.

    To switch to persistent device names on a system that has already been installed, use the YaST2 partitioner. For each partition, select "Edit" and go to the "FStab Options" dialog. Any mount option except "Device name" provides you persistent device names. In addition, rerun the boot loader module in YaST to switch the bootloader to using the persistent device name. Just start the module and select "Finish" to write the new proposed configuration to disk. This needs to be done before adding new storage devices.

    For more information, see

  • Using qla3xxx and qla4xxx Drivers at The Same Time

    QLogic iSCSI Expansion Card for IBM BladeCenter provides both Ethernet and iSCSI functions. Some parts on the card are shared by both functions. The current qla3xxx (Ethernet) and qla4xxx (iSCSI) drivers support Ethernet and iSCSI function individually. They do not support using both functions at the same time. Using both Ethernet and iSCSI functions at the same time may hang the device and cause data loss and filesystem corruptions on iSCSI devices, or network disruptions on Ethernet.

    Boot the installation with brokenmodules=qla3xxx or brokenmodules=qla4xxx to prevent one of the drivers from loading.

  • Using iSCSI Disks When Installing

    To use iSCSI disks during installation it is necessary to add the following parameter to the boot option line: withiscsi=1

    During installation an additional screen appears that provides the option to attach iSCSI disks to the system and use them in the installation process.

    Booting from an iSCSI server on i386, x86_64 and ppc64 is supported, when iSCSI enabled firmware is used.

    Note: While the installer for SLES 11 SP1 supports iscsi install, it uses the software iscsi method. Native Broadcom iSCSI capabilities, which involves the software stack, are not supported during installation.

  • Using EDD Information for Storage Device Identification

    EDD information (/sys/firmware/edd/<device>) to identify your storage devices are used by default. To disable this, change the installer default settings using an additional kernel parameter.

    EDD Requirements:

    • BIOS provides full EDD information (found in /sys/firmware/edd/<device>)

    • Disks are signed with a unique MBR signature (found in /sys/firmware/edd/<device>/mbr_signature)


    • Add parameter edd=off to the kernel parameters to disable EDD.

  • Automatic Installation With AutoYaST in an LPAR (System z)

    For automatic installation with AutoYaST in an LPAR,it is required that the parmfile used for such an installation has blank characters at the beginning and at the end of each line (the first line need not start with a blank). The number of characters in one line should not exceed 80 characters.

  • Adding DASD or zFCP Disks During Installation (System z)

    Adding of DASD or zFCP disks is not only possible during the installation workflow, but also when the installation proposal is shown. To add disks at this stage, please click on the "Expert" tab and scroll down. There the DASD and/or zFCP entry is shown. These added disks are not shown in the partitioner automatically. To make the disks visible in the partitioner, you have to click on the expert label and select "reread partition table". This may reset any previously entered information.

  • Network Installation Via eHEA on POWER

    If network installation via the IBM eHEA Ethernet Adapter on POWER systems is desired, no huge (16GB) pages may be assigned to the partition during installation.

Also see Chapter 10, Infrastructure, Package and Architecture specific Information.

Chapter 3. Features and Versions

3.1. Linux Kernel and Toolchain

  • GCC 4.3.4

  • glibc 2.11.1

  • Linux kernel 2.6.32

  • perl 5.10

  • php 5.2.6

  • python 2.6.0

  • ruby 1.8.7

3.2. Server

Note: version numbers do not necessarily give the final patch and security status of an application, as SUSE may have added additional patches to the specific version of an application.

  • Apache 2.2.10 - Webserver

  • Bind 9.5.0P2 - The Bind Domain Name Server

  • Samba 3.4.3

3.3. Desktop

  • GNOME 2.28

    GNOME was updated to the latest version and uses PulseAudio for sound.

  • KDE 4.3.5

    KDE was updated to the latest 4.3.4 version.

  • 7.4

3.4. Security

  • Managing Access Control Lists over NFSv4

    There is no single standard for Access Control Lists (ACL) in Linux beyond the simple user/group/others-rwx flags. One option for finer control are so-called "Draft Posix ACLs", which were never formally standardised by Posix. Another is the NFSv4 ACLs, which were design to be part of the NFSv4 network filesystem with the goal of making something that provided reasonable compatability between Posix systems (like Linux) and WIN32 systems (like Microsoft Windows). It turns out that NFSv4 ACLs are not sufficient to correctly implent Draft Posix ACLs so no attempt has been made to map ACL accesses on an NFSv4 client (using e.g. setfacl ).

    So when using NFSv4, Draft Posix ACLs cannot be used even in emulation and NFSv4 ACLs need to be used directly; i.e., while setfacl can work on NFSv3, it cannot work on NFSv4.

    To allow NFSv4 ACLs to be used on an NFSv4 filesystem we provide the "nfs4-acl-tools" package which contains:

    • nfs4_getfacl

    • nfs4_setfacl

    • nfs4_editfacl

    These operate in a generally simillar way to getfacl and setfacl for examining and modifying NFSv4 ACLs.

    Note that these can only be effective if the filesystem on the NFS server provides full support for NFSv4 ACLs. Any limitation imposed by the server will be felt by these programs running on the client in that some particular combinations of Access Control Entries (ACEs) may not be possible.

    A future release of Linux may support "richacls", which are designed to provide access to NFSv4 ACLs in a way that is more integrated with other filessytems. If and when these become available we will need to transition from using nfs4-acl-tools towards whatever support tools will come with "richacls".

  • PAM Configuration

    The common PAM configuration files (/etc/pam.d/common-*) are now created and managed with pam-config.

  • Basic SELinux Enablement

    In addition to AppArmor, SELinux capabilities were added to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. While it is not enabled by default, and not supported, this will allow customers to enable and run SELinux with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server if they want to do so.

    What does SELinux basic enablement mean?

    • The kernel will ship with SELinux support.

    • We will apply SELinux patches to all “common” userland packages.

    • The libraries required for SELinux (libselinux, libsepol, libsemanage, etc.) were added to openSUSE and SUSE Linux Enterprise.

    • However, we are not offering enterprise class support for SELinux at this time; thus we will run QA with SELinux disabled–to make sure that SELinux patches do not break the default delivery and the majority of packages.

    • The SELinux specific tools are shipped as part of the default distribution delivery. However, packages such as checkpolicy, policycoreutils, selinux-doc are not supported.

    • We will not be shipping any SELinux policies in the distribution. (Reference and minimal policies may be available from the repositories at some future point.)

    By enabling SELinux in our codebase, we add missing pieces of code that exist in the community already, and we allow those who wish to use SELinux to do so conveniently without having to replace a big portion of the distribution.

  • Enablement for TPM/Trusted Computing

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 comes with support for Trusted Computing technology. To enable your system's TPM chip, make sure that the "security chip" option in your BIOS is selected. TPM support is entirely passive, meaning that measurements are being performed, but no action is taken based on any TPM-related activity. TPM chips manufactured by Infineon, NSC and Atmel are supported, in addition to the virtual TPM device for Xen.

    • The corresponding kernel drivers are not loaded automatically. To find the drivers enter

      find /lib/modules -type f -name "tpm*.ko"

      and load the kernel modules for your system manually or via MODULES_LOADED_ON_BOOT in /etc/sysconfig/kernel.

    • If your TPM chip with taken ownership is configured in Linux and available for use, you may read PCRs from /sys/devices/*/*/pcrs.

    • The tpm-tools package contains utilities to administer your TPM chip, and the trousers package provides "tcsd"—the daemon that allows userland programs to communicate with the TPM driver in the Linux kernel. The tcsd daemon can be enabled as a service for the runlevels of your choice.

    • To implement a trusted ("measured") boot path, use the package trustedgrub instead of the grub package as your bootloader. The trustedgrub bootloader does not display any graphical representation of a boot menu for informational reasons.

3.5. Network

  • IPv6 Improvements

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server can be installed in an IPv6 environment and run IPv6 applications. When installing via network, do not forget to boot with "ipv6=1" (accept v4 and v6) or "ipv6only=1" (only v6) on the kernel command line. For more information, see the Deployment Guide and also Section 12.6, “IPv6 Implementation and Compliance”.

  • 10G networking capabilities

  • OFED 1.4

  • traceroute 1.2

    Support for traceroute over TCP

  • FCoE

    FCoE is an implementation of the Fibre Channel over Ethernet working draft. Fibre Channel over Ethernet is the encapsulation of Fibre Channel frames in Ethernet packets. It allows users with a FCF (Fibre Channel over Ethernet Forwarder) to access their existing Fibre Channel storage using an Ethernet adapter. When leveraging DCB's PFC technology to provide a loss-less environment, FCoE can run SAN and LAN traffic over the same link.

  • Data Center Bridging (DCB)

    Data Center Bridging (DCB) is a collection of Ethernet enhancements designed to allow network traffic with differing requirements (e.g., highly reliable, no drops vs. best effort vs. low latency) to operate and co-exist on Ethernet. Current DCB features are:

    • Enhanced Transmission Selection (aka Priority Grouping) to provide a framework for assigning bandwidth guarantees to traffic classes.

    • Priority-based Flow Control (PFC) provides a flow control mechanism which can work independently for each 802.1p priority.

    • Congestion Notification provides a mechanism for end-to-end congestion control for protocols which do not have built-in congestion management.

3.6. Systems Management

  • Improved Update Stack

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 comes with an improved update stack and the new command line tool zypper to manage the repositories and install or update packages.

  • Enhanced YaST Partitioner

  • Extended Built-In Management Infrastructure

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server provides CIM/WBEM enablement with the SFCB CIMOM.

    For a complete list of providers and management profiles, see

  • Support for Web Services for Management (WS-Management)

    The WS-Management protocol is supported via Openwsman, providing client (package: openwsman-client) and server (package: openwsman-server) implementations.

    This allows for interoperable management with the Windows 'winrm' stack.

  • WebYaST - Web Based Remote Management

    WebYaST is a simple, easy to use, web-based administration tool targeted at casual Linux administators.

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 adds WebYaST through an online software repository. After successful registration you can install and start WebYaST by following these steps:

    • Enable online repositories

      zypper mr -e SLE11-WebYaST-SP1-Pool

      zypper mr -e SLE11-WebYaST-SP1-Updates

    • Install via pattern

      zypper in -t pattern WebYaST-UI WebYaST-Service

    • Open firewall ports

      SuSEfirewall2 open EXT TCP 54984

      SuSEfirewall2 restart

    • Start services

      rccollectd start

      rcyastws start

      rcyastwc start

    The last command will display the URL to connect to with a Web browser.

3.7. Resource Management

Kernel Resource Management

cgroups (Control groups, replaces and enhances CKRM from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9), with fine-grained control of CPU, memory and devices.

Added SUSE developed, open source 'cpuset' command-line tool.

Since SLES 11 SP1, activate memory controller.

3.8. Other

EVMS2 was replaced with LVM2

Find a public statement at

Default Filesystem

The default filesystem in new installations has been changed from ReiserFS to ext3. A public statement can be found at and in our FAQ at:

UEFI enablement on AMD64/Intel64

Xen boot via native-UEFI is not supported


Linux Foundation's Carrier Grade Linux (CGL)

SUSE supports the Linux Foundation's Carrier Grade Linux (CGL) specification. SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 meets the latest CGL 4.0 standard, and is CGL registered. For more information, see

Hot-Add Memory and CPU with vSphere 4.1 or Newer

Hot-add memory and CPU is supported and tested for both 32-bit and 64-bit SLES 11 SP1 when running vSphere 4.1 or newer. For more information, see the VMware Compatibility Guide at

3.9. System z

For more information, see under

  • Hardware

    • Improved handling dynamic subchannel mapping

    • Multipath IPL (IPL through IFCC)

    • z10 instructions support

    • Full HW Decimal Floating Point support on GCC and GLIBC

    • Standby CPU activation/deactivation

    • Vertical CPU Management

    • Standby memory add via sclp

  • z/VM

    • Dynamic memory attach/detach (req. z/VM 5.4)

    • Exploitation of DCSS above 2G (req. z/VM 5.4)

    • Extra kernel parameter via VMPARM

    • Provide CMS script for initial SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 installation under z/VM

  • Storage

    • Support for DASD volumes with more than 64K cylinders on a DS8000 (Large Volume support)

    • Support of High Performance FICON

    • Support for disk encryption FICON-attached DS8000, introduced with DS8000 R4.2

    • FICON Hyper PAV exploitation

    • FCP Automatic port discovery

    • FCP LUN discovery tool

    • Updated FCP HBA API

  • Network

    • Installation support on 2nd Ports with OSA Express-3 (with 2 port per CHPID=4 Ports)

    • HiperSocket Layer3 support for Ipv6 (for z/OS communication)

    • CTCMPC merge into CTC driver: ctcm

    • HiperSockets Network Traffic Analyzer (HiperSockets NTA)

    • OSA-Express QDIO data connection isolation

  • Security

    • zcrypt: Support for Crypto Express3 (CEX3A, CEX3C)

    • support of HW crypto acceleration in OpenSSH. OpenSSH now make use of buildin HW crypto acceleration.

    • Exploitation of Long Random Numbers

    • New HW Crypto Cards enablement

  • RAS

    • Call Home Data support (sclp cpi sysfs interface and service)

    • Kernel Message Catalog

    • Shutdown actions interface and tools

    • Large image dump on DASD

    • FCP enhanced trace facility

    • FCP Performance Data Collection

    • kernel: Add Call Home data on halt and panic if running in LPAR

    • New support to suspend and resume Linux instances running in LPAR or as a z/VM-guest

  • Web 2.0 Open Source Stack in SUSE Linux Enterprise Software Development Kit

  • Functionality implemented in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 (and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 Service Pack 2.)

    • AF_IUCV Support

    • Provide Linux filesystem data into z/VM monitor stream

    • Provide Linux process data into z/VM monitor stream

    • System z support for processor degradation

    • In-Kernel crypto exploitation of new CP Assist functions

    • Linux CPU Node Affinity

    • Support for OSA 2 Ports per CHPID

    • cpuplugd to automatic adapt CPU and/or memory

    • Dynamic CHPID reconfiguration via SCLP - tools

    • skb scatter-gather support for large incoming messages - QETH Exploitation

    • Support for HiperSockets in Layer 2 mode (with IPv4 and IPv6)

Chapter 4. Driver Updates

4.1. Network Drivers

  • Updated bnx driver to version 2.0.4

  • Updated bnx2x driver to version 1.52.1-7

  • Updated e100 driver to version 3.5.24-k2

  • Updated tg3 driver to version 3.106

  • Added bna driver for Brocade 10Gbit LAN card in version

  • Updated bfa driver to version

  • Updated qla3xxx driver to version 2.03.00-k5

  • Updated sky2 driver to version 1.25

4.2. Storage Drivers

  • Updated qla2xxx to version

  • Updated qla4xxx to version v5.

  • Updated megaraid_mbox driver to version

  • Updated megaraid_sas to version 4.27

  • Updated MPT Fusion to version

  • Updated mpt2sas driver to version

  • Updated lpfc driver to version

  • Added bnx2i driver for Broadcom NetXtreme II in version 2.1.1

  • Updated bfa driver to version

  • The enic driver was updated to version 1.4.2 to support newer Cisco UCS systems. This update also replaces LRO (Large Receive Offload) to GRO (Generic Receive Offload).

4.3. Other Drivers

  • Updated CIFS to version 1.50c

  • Updated OCFS2 to version 1.4.0

  • Updated intel-i810 driver

  • Added X11 driver for AMD Geode LX 2D (xorg-x11-driver-video-amd)

  • Updated X11 driver for Radeon cards

  • Updated XFS and DMAPI driver

  • Updated Wacom driver to version 1.46

Chapter 5. Other Updates

  • Support for installation from a NFSv4 server was added.

  • Updated binutils to version 2.20.0

  • Updated bluez to version 4.51

  • Updated clamav to version 0.95.2

  • Updated crash to version 5.0.1

  • Updated dhcp to version 3.1.3

  • Updated gdb to version 7.0

  • Updated hplip to version 3.9.8

  • Updated ipsec-tools to version 0.7.3

  • Updated IBM Java 1.4.2 to SR13 FP3

  • Updated IBM Java 1.6.0 to SR7

  • Updated libcgroup1 to version 0.34

  • Updated libcmpiutil to version 0.5

  • Updated libelf to version 0.8.12

  • Updated QT4 to version 4.6.2

  • Updated libvirt to version 0.7.6

  • Updated libvirt-cim to version 0.5.8

  • Updated mdadm to version 3.0.3

  • Updated module-init-tools to version 3.11.1

  • Updated MozillaFirefox to version 3.5.7

  • Added mt_st in version 0.9b

  • Added netlabel in version 0.19

  • Updated numactl to version 2.0.3

  • Updated openCryptoki to version 2.3.0

  • Updated openldap2 to version 2.4.20

  • Added openvas in version 3.0

  • Added perf: Performance Counters For Linux

  • Added perl-WWW-Curl in version 4.09

  • Added rng-tools: Support daemon for hardware random device

  • Updated sblim-cim-client2 to version 2.1.3

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-base to version 1.6.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-fsvol to version 1.5.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-network to version 1.4.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-nfsv3 to version 1.1.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-nfsv4 to version 1.1.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-params to version 1.3.0

  • Updated sblim-cmpi-sysfs to version 1.2.0

  • Updated sblim-gather to version 2.2.0

  • Updated sblim-sfcb to version 1.3.7

  • Updated sblim-sfcc to version 2.2.1

  • Updated sblim-wbemcli to version 1.6.1

  • Updated strongswan to version 4.3.4

  • Added stunnel in version 4.27

  • Updated virt-viewer to version 0.2.0

  • Updated XEN to version 4.0.0

  • Updated dcbd to version 0.9.24

  • Updated e2fsprogs to version 1.41.9

  • Updated iprutils to version 2.2.20

  • Updated iscsitarget to version 1.4.19

  • Updated nfs-utils to version 1.2.1 for improved IPv6 support

  • Added apport, a tool to collect data automatically from crashed processes

Chapter 6. Support Statement for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

To receive support, customers need an appropriate subscription with Novell; for more information, please see:

6.1. General Support Statement

The following definitions apply:

  • L1: Installation and problem determination, which means technical support designed to provide compatibility information, installation configuration assistance, usage support, on-going maintenance and basic troubleshooting. Level 1 Support is not intended to correct product defect errors.

  • L2: Reproduction of problem isolation, which means technical support designed to duplicate customer problems, isolate problem area and potential issues, and provide resolution for problems not resolved by Level 1 Support.

  • L3: Code debugging and problem resolution, which means technical support designed to resolve complex problems by engaging engineering in patch provision, and resolution of product defects which have been identified by Level 2 Support.

For contracted customers and partners, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 will be delivered with L3 support for all packages, except the following:

  • Technology Previews and SELinux Basic Enablement

  • Sounds, Graphics, Fonts and Artwork

  • Packages, which require an additional customer contract

  • Packages on the Software Development Kit (SDK)

Novell will only support the usage of original (e.g., unchanged or un-recompiled) packages.

6.2. Software, Which Needs Specific Contracts

The following packages require additional support contracts to be obtained by the customer, in order to receive full support.

  • BEA Java (Itanium only)

  • MySQL Database

  • PostgreSQL Database

  • WebSphere CE Application Server

6.3. Technology Previews

Technology previews are packages, stacks, or features delivered by Novell. These features are not supported. They may be functionally incomplete, unstable or in other ways not suitable for production use. They are mainly included for customer convenience and give customers a chance to test new technologies within an enterprise environment.

Whether a technical preview will be moved to a full supported package later, depends on customer and market feedback. A technical preview does not automatically result in support at a later point in time. Technical previews could be dropped at any time and Novell is not committed that a technical preview will be available later in the product cycle.

Please, give your Novell representative feedback, including your experience and use case. You might use the Novell Requirements Portal at

  • Hot-Add of Memory

    Hot-Add-memory is currently only supported on the following hardware:

    • IBM eServer xSeries x260, single node x460, x3800, x3850, single node x3950

    • certified systems based on recent Intel Xeon Architecture

    • certified systems based on recent Intel IPF Architecture

    • All IBM servers and blades with POWER5, POWER6, or POWER7 processors and recent firmware

    If your specific machine is not listed, please call Novell support to confirm whether or not your machine has been successfully tested. Also, please regularly check our maintenance update information, which will explicitly mention the general availability of this feature.

    Restriction on using IBM eHCA InfiniBand adapters in conjunction with Hot-Add of Memory on IBM System p:

    The current eHCA Device Driver will prevent dynamic memory operations on a partition as long as the driver is loaded. If the driver is unloaded prior to the operation and then loaded again afterwards, adapter initialization may fail. A Partition Shutdown / Activate sequence on the HMC may be needed to recover from this situation.

  • Internet Storage Naming Service (iSNS)

    The Internet Storage Naming Service (iSNS) package is by design suitable for secure internal networks only. Novell will continue to work with the community on improving security on this.

  • Linux Filesystem Capabilities

    Our kernel is compiled with support for Linux Filesystem Capabilities. This is disabled per default and can be enabled by adding file_caps=1 as kernel boot option.

  • eCryptfs Filesystem

    The eCryptfs kernel modules and the ecryptfs-utils package shipped with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 are a preview of a stacked cryptographic filesystem for Linux.

  • Ext4 Filesystem

    The Ext4 kernel modules and userland tools shipped with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 are a preview of a new filesystem for Linux.

  • biosdevname

    biosdevname in its simplest form takes a kernel name as an argument, and returns the BIOS-given name it "should" be. This is necessary on systems where the BIOS name for a given device (e.g., the label on the chassis is "Gb1") doesn't map directly and obviously to the kernel name (e.g., eth0).

  • btrfs Filesystem

    The btrfs kernel modules and userland tools shipped with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 are a preview of a new filesystem for Linux.

  • Read-Only Root Filesystem

    It is possible to run SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 on a shared read-only root filesystem. A read-only root setup consists of the read-only root filesystem, a scratch and a state filesystem. The /etc/rwtab file defines which files and directories on the read-only root filesystem are replaced by which files on the state and scratch filesystems for each system instance.

    The readonlyroot kernel command line option enables read-only root mode; the state= and scratch= kernel command line options determine the devices on which the state and scratch filesystems are located.

    In order to set up a system with a read-only root filesystem, set up a scratch filesystem, set up a filesystem to use for storing persistent per- instance state, adjust /etc/rwtab as needed, add the appropriate kernel command line options to your boot loader configuration, replace /etc/mtab with a symlink to /proc/mounts as described below, and (re)boot the system.

    In order to replace /etc/mtab with the appropriate symlinks, do this:

    rm -f /etc/mtab
    ln -s /proc/mounts /etc/mtab

    See the rwtab(5) manual page for further details and for limitations on System z.

Chapter 7. Software Development Kit

Novell provides a Software Development Kit (SDK) for SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 Service Pack 1. This SDK contains libraries, development-environments and tools along the following patterns:

  • C/C++ Development

  • Certification

  • Documentation Tools

  • GNOME Development

  • Java Development

  • KDE Development

  • Linux Kernel Development

  • Programming Libraries

  • .NET Development

  • Miscellaneous

  • Perl Development

  • Python Development

  • Qt 4 Development

  • Ruby on Rails Development

  • Ruby Development

  • Version Control Systems

  • Web Development

  • YaST Development

Chapter 8. Update-Related Notes

This section includes update-related information for this release:

8.1. General Notes

  • Online migration from SP1 to SP2 is not supported, if debuginfo packages are installed.

  • Migration is supported from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP3 and SP4 via bootable media (incl. PXE boot).

  • Upgrading from SLES 10 to SLES 11 with Root Filesystem on iSCSI

    The upgrade or the unattended migration from SLES 10 to SLES 11 fails, if the root filesystem of the machine is located on iSCSI.

    The reason is that on SLES 10, mount had the 'hotplug' option for iSCSI disks, which is replaced with 'nofail' on SLES 11. After upgrade, initrd does not mount the root filesystem complaining about wrong options.

    To work around this limitation, replace the 'hotplug' option in /etc/fstab with 'nofail' before last reboot for the upgrade.

  • Upgrading from SLES 10 SP2

    There are two supported ways to upgrade from SLES 10 SP2 to SLES 11 SP1, which require intermediate upgrade steps:

    • SLES 10 SP2 -> SLES 11 GA -> SLES 11 SP1, or

    • SLES 10 SP2 -> SLES 10 SP3 -> SLES 10 SP4 -> SLES 11 SP1

    For more information, see

  • Kernel split in different packages

    With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 the kernel RPMs are split in different parts:

    • kernel-flavor-base

      Very reduced hardware support, intended to be used in virtual machine images.

    • kernel-flavor

      Extends the base package; contains all supported kernel modules.

    • kernel-flavor-extra

      All other kernel modules which may be useful, but which are not supported. This package will not be installed by default.

  • Tickless Idle

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server uses tickless timers. This can be disabled by adding nohz=off as a boot option.

  • Development Packages

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server will no longer contain any development packages, with the exception of some core development packages necessary to compile kernel modules. Development packages are available in the SUSE Linux Enterprise Software Development Kit.

  • Displaying manual pages with the same name

    The man command now asks, which manual page the user wants to see if manual pages with the same name exist in different sections. The user is expected to type the section number to make this manual page visible.

    If you want to revert back to the previously used method, set MAN_POSIXLY_CORRECT=1 in a shell initialization file such as ~/.bashrc.

  • YaST LDAP Server no longer using /etc/openldap/slapd.conf

    The YaST LDAP Server module no longer stores the configuration of the LDAP Server in the file /etc/openldap/slapd.conf. It uses OpenLDAP's dynamic configuration backend, which stores the configuration in an LDAP database it self. That database consists of a set of .ldif files in the directory /etc/openldap/slapd.d. Normally, you do not need to access these files directly. To access the configuration you can either use the yast2-ldap-server module or any capable LDAP client (e.g., ldapmodify, ldapsearch, etc.). For details on the dynamic configuration of OpenLDAP, see the OpenLDAP Administration Guide.

  • Novell AppArmor

    This release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server ships with Novell AppArmor. The AppArmor intrusion prevention framework builds a firewall around your applications by limiting the access to files, directories, and POSIX capabilities to the minimum required for normal operation. AppArmor protection can be enabled via the AppArmor control panel, located in YaST under Novell AppArmor. For detailed information about using Novell AppArmor, see the documentation in /usr/share/doc/packages/apparmor-docs.

    The AppArmor profiles included with SUSE Linux have been developed with our best efforts to reproduce how most users use their software. The profiles provided work unmodified for many users, but some users may find our profiles too restrictive for their environments.

    If you discover that some of your applications do not function as you expected, you may need to use the AppArmor Update Profile Wizard in YaST (or use the aa-logprof(8) command line utility) to update your AppArmor profiles. Place all your profiles into learning mode with the following: aa-complain /etc/apparmor.d/*

    When a program generates many complaints, the system's performance is degraded. To mitigate this, we recommend periodically running the Update Profile Wizard (or aa-logprof(8)) to update your profiles even if you choose to leave them in learning mode. This reduces the number of learning events logged to disk, which improves the performance of the system.

  • Updates with alternative Bootloader Programs (non-Linux)

    Updating from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP2 in a system where alternative bootloaders (not grub) are installed in the MBR (Master Boot Record) might override the MBR and place grub as the primary bootloader into the system.

    We propose doing a fresh installation in this case. Don't forget to backup your data!


    It is always a good plan to keep data separated from the system software. In other words, /home, /srv, ... and other volumes containing data should be on a separate partition, volume group or logical volume. The YaST partitioning module will propose doing this.

  • Upgrading MySQL to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11

    During the upgrade to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 MySQL is also upgraded to the latest version. To complete this migration you may have to upgrade your data as described in the MySQL documentation.

  • Fine-Tuning Firewall Settings

    SuSEfirewall2 is enabled by default. That means that by default you cannot log in from remote systems. This also interferes with network browsing and multicast applications, such as SLP and Samba ("Network Neighborhood"). You can fine-tune the firewall settings using YaST.

  • Upgrading from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP2 to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 with the Xen Hypervisor may have incorrect network configuration

    We have improved the network configuration from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1: If you install SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 and configure Xen, you get a bridged setup through YaST. However, if you upgrade from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP2 to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1, the upgrade does not configure the bridged setup automatically.

    Start the "YaST Control Center", choose "Virtualization" and then "Install Hypervisor and Tools" to start the bridge proposal for networking. Alternatively, call

    yast2 xen

    on the commandline.

  • Upgrading from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP2 to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 with the Xen Hypervisor does not preserve Xen configuration options

    Due to changes in default settings, the Xen Management Daemon (xend) configuration file is replaced during upgrade. Customizations are saved to /etc/xen/xend-config.sxp.rpmsave for merging with the new configuration file.

  • LILO configuration via YaST/AutoYaST

    The configuration of the LILO bootloader via YaST/AutoYaST is still possible, but not supported on the x86/x86_64 architecture any more. For further information, consult Novell TID 7003226

8.2. Update from SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11

  • Changed routing behavior

    SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 set net.ipv4.conf.all.rp_filter = 1 in /etc/sysctl.conf with the intention of enabling route path filtering. However, the Kernel fails to enable routing path filtering, as intended, by default in these products.

    In SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 this bug is fixed and most simple single-homed unicast server setups will not notice a change. But it may cause issues for applications that relied on reverse path filtering being disabled (e.g., multicast routing or multi-homed servers).

    For more details, see

  • Kernel devel packages

    With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack1 the configuration files for recompiling the kernel were moved in an own sub-package:

    • kernel-flavor-devel

      This package contains only the configuration for one flavor.

Chapter 9. Deprecated Functionality

The following list item were removed with the major release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11:

  • dante

  • JFS

    The JFS filesystem is no longer supported and the utilities were removed from the distribution.

  • EVMS

    For the future strategy and development with respect to volume- and storage-management on SUSE Linux Enterprise, please see:

  • ippl

  • powertweak

  • SUN Java

  • uw-imapd

  • The mapped-base functionality, which is used by 32-Bit applications that need a larger dynamic data space (such as database management systems), was replaced with flexmap.

  • zmd

The following list item were removed with the release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1:

  • brocade-bfa

    The brocade-bfa kernel module is now part of the main kernel package.

  • enic-kmp

    The enic kernel module is now part of the main kernel package.

  • fnic-kmp

    The fnic kernel module is now part of the main kernel package.

  • kvm-kmp

    The KVM kernel modules are now part of the main kernel package.

  • java-1_6_0-ibm-x86

The following list of current functionality is deprecated and will be removed with the next Service Pack or major release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server:

  • The reiserfs filesystem is fully supported for the lifetime of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 specifically for migration purposes. We will however remove support for creating new reiserfs filesystems starting with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • The sendmail package is deprecated and might be removed with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • The lprng package is deprecated and will be removed with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • The dhcp-client package is deprecated and will be removed with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • The qt3 package is deprecated and will be removed with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • openswan and strongswan packages will be consolidated.

  • syslog-ng will be replaced with rsyslog

  • The smpppd package is deprecated and will be removed with one of the next Service Packs or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • The RAW devices are deprecated and will be removed with one of the next Service Packs or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.

  • IBM Java 1.4.2 is supported with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 specifically for migration purposes. We will however remove support for this specific Java version with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 latest.

  • The use of a 32-bit hypervisor as a virtualization host is deprecated but provided for migration purposes. SUSE may remove this functionality with a future service pack. 32-bit virtual guests are not affected and are fully supported with the provided 64-bit hypervisor.

Chapter 10. Infrastructure, Package and Architecture specific Information

10.1. Systems Management

  • Modified operation against Novell Customer Center

    Effective on 2009-01-13, provisional registrations will be disabled in the Novell Customer Center. Registering an instance of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server or Open Enterprise Server (OES) products now requires a valid, entitled activation code. Evaluation codes for reviews or proofs of concept can be obtained from the product pages and from the download pages on If a device is registered without a code at setup time, a provisional code is assigned by Novell Customer Center (NCC) to the device, and an entry for it is made in your NCC list of devices. No update repositories are assigned to the device at this time. Once you are ready to assign a code to the device, starting the YaST Novell Customer Center registration module and putting in the appropriate code (replacing the un-entitled provisional code that NCC generated) will fully entitle the device and activate the appropriate update repositories.

  • Operation against Subscription Management Tool

    Operation under the Subscription Management Tool (SMT) package and registration proxy is not affected. Registration against SMT will assign codes automatically from your default pool in NCC until all entitlements have been assigned. Registering additional devices once the pool is depleted will result in the new device being assigned a provisional code (with local access to updates), and the SMT server will provide appropriate notification to the administrator that these new devices need to be entitled.

  • Minimal Pattern

    The minimal pattern provided in YaST's Software Selection Dialog targets experienced customers and should be used as a base for your own specific software selections.

    Do not expect that an unchanged or not-extended minimal pattern provides a useful basis for your business needs.

    This pattern does not include any dump- or logging-tools. To fully support your configuration, Novell Technical Services (NTS) will request the installation of all the tools which are needed for further analysis, in case of a support request.

  • SPident

    SPident is a tool to identify the Service Pack level of the current installation. This tool is not delivered with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 GA, but is replaced by the new SAM tool (package "suse-sam").

10.2. Performance Related Information

  • Linux Completely Fair Scheduler affects Java performance

    Problem (Abstract)

    Java applications that use synchronization extensively might perform poorly on Linux systems that include the Completely Fair Scheduler. If you encounter this problem, there are two possible workarounds.


    You may observe extremely high CPU usage by your Java application, and very slow progress through synchronized blocks. The application may appear to hang due to the slow progress.


    The Completely Fair Scheduler (CFS) is a scheduler that was adopted into the mainline Linux kernel as of release 2.6.23. The CFS algorithm is different from previous Linux releases. It might change the performance properties of some applications. In particular, CFS implements sched_yield() differently, making it more likely that a thread that yields will be given CPU time regardless. More information on CFS can be found here: "Multiprocessing with the Completely Fair Scheduler",

    The new behavior of sched_yield() might adversely affect the performance of synchronization in the IBM JVM.


    This problem may affect IBM JDK 5.0 and 6.0 (all versions) running on Linux kernels that include the Completely Fair Scheduler, including Linux kernel 2.6.27 in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.

    Resolving the problem

    If you observe poor performance of your Java application, there are two possible workarounds:

    • Either invoke the JVM with the additional argument "-Xthr:minimizeUserCPU"

    • Or configure the Linux kernel to use the more backward-compatible heuristic for sched_yield(), by setting the sched_compat_yield tunable kernel property to 1. For example:

      echo "1" > /proc/sys/kernel/sched_compat_yield

    You should not use these workarounds unless you are experiencing poor performance.

  • Tuning performance of simple database engines

    Simple database engines like Berkeley DB use memory mappings (mmap(2)) to manipulate database files. When the mapped memory is modified, those changes need to be written back to disk. In SUSE Linux Enterprise 11, the kernel includes modified mapped memory in its calculations for deciding when to start background writeback, and when to throttle processes which modify additional memory. (In previous versions, mapped dirty pages were not accounted for, and the amount of modified memory could exceed the overall limit defined.) This can lead to a decrease in performance; the fix is to increase the overall limit.

    The maximum amount of dirty memory is 40% in SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 by default. This value is chosen for average workloads, so that enough memory remains available for other uses. The following settings may be relevant when tuning for database workloads:

    • vm.dirty_ratio

      Maximum percentage of dirty system memory (default 40).

    • vm.dirty_background_ratio

      Percentage of dirty system memory at which background writeback will start (default 10).

    • vm.dirty_expire_centisecs

      Duration after which dirty system memory is considered old enough to be eligible for background writeback (in centiseconds).

    These limits can be observed or modified with the sysctl utility (see sysctl(1), sysctl.conf(5)).

  • openSSH with Cryptographical Hardware Acceleration

    openSSH now makes use of cryptographical hardware acceleration. As a result, the transfer of large quantities of data through a ssh connection is considerably faster. As an additional benefit, the CPU of the system with cryptographical hardware will see a significant reduction in load.

10.3. Storage

  • Multipathing—SCSI Hardware Handler

    Some storage devices, e.g. IBM DS4K, require special handling for path failover and failback. In SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP2, this was handled at the dm layer as hardware handler.

    One drawback of this implementation was that the underlying SCSI layer didn't know about the existence of the Hardware Handler. Hence, during device probing, SCSI would send I/O on the passive path, which would fail after a timeout and also print extraneous error messages in the console.

    In SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11, this problem is resolved by moving the hardware handler to the SCSI layer, hence the term SCSI Hardware Handler. These handlers are modules created under the SCSI directory in the Linux Kernel.

    In SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11, there are four SCSI Hardware Handlers: scsi_dh_alua, scsi_dh_rdac, scsi_dh_hp_sw, scsi_dh_emc.

    These modules need to be included in the initrd image so that SCSI knows about the special handling during probe time itself.

    This can be done by following these steps:

    • Add the device handler modules to the INITRD_MODULES variable in /etc/sysconfig/kernel

    • Create a new initrd using

      mkinitrd -k /boot/vmlinux-<flavour> -i /boot/initrd-<flavour>-scsi_dh -M /boot/<flavour>
    • Update the grub.conf/lilo.conf/yaboot.conf file with the newly built initrd

    • Reboot

  • Multipathing: failed paths do not return after a path failure

    To work in a fully certified environment with all storage backend systems and fully supported by Novell and your storage vendor, please make sure that you have installed at least multipath-tools-0.4.8-40.2 or a later version. Appropriate packages are available as a maintenance update for SUSE Linux Enterprise 11.

  • Local Mounts of iSCSI Shares

    An iSCSI shared device should never be mounted directly on the local machine. In an OCFS2 environment, doing so causes all hardware to hard hang.

10.4. Architecture Independent Information

10.4.1. Changes in Packaging and Delivery SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability Extension 11

With the SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability Extension 11, SUSE offers the most modern open source High Availability Stack for Mission Critical environments. Kernel Has Memory Cgroup Support Enabled By Default

While this functionality is welcomed in most environments, it requires about 1% of memory: memory allocation is done on boot time and is using 40 Bytes per 4 KiB page which results in 1% of memory.

In virtualized environments, specifically, but not exclusively on s390x systems, this may lead to a higher basic memory consumption: e.g. a 20GiB host with 200 x 1GiB Guests consumes 10% of the real memory.

This memory is not swappable by Linux itself, but the guest cgroup memory is pageable by a z/VM host on an s390x system and might be swappable on other hypervisors as well.

In SLES 11 SP1 the cgroup memory support is activated by default but it can be deactivated by adding the Kernel Parameter cgroup_disable=memory

A reboot is required to deactivate or activate this setting. Kernel Development Files Moved to Individual kernel-$flavor-devel Packages

Up to SLE 11 GA, the kernel development files (.config, Module.symvers, etc.) for all flavors were packaged in a single kernel-syms package. Starting with SLE 11 SP1, these files are packaged in individual kernel-$flavor-devel packages, allowing to build KMPs for only the required kernel flavors. For compatibility with existing spec files, the kernel-syms package still exists and depends on the individual kernel-$flavor-devel packages. Live Migration of KVM Guest with Device Hot-Plugging

Hot-plugging a device (network, disk) works fine for a KVM guest on a SLES 11 SP1 host. However, migrating the same guest with the hotplugged device (available on the destination host) fails.

SLES 11 SP1 supports the hotplugging of the device to the KVM guest. But, migrating the guest with the hot-plugged device is not supported, and is expected to fail. Support for Tomcat Servlet Container

The Tomcat6 Servlet/JSP engine is delivered as part of the SUSE Linux Enterprise Software Development Kit 11.

Starting with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack2, Tomcat6 and related packages will be part of the Server product. Based on customer and partner feedback we fully support this on the architectures Intel/AMD x86 (32bit), AMD64/Intel64, IBM POWER, IBM System z.

The following packages are affected: tomcat6, tomcat6-servlet-2_5-api, tomcat6-webapps, tomcat6-docs-webapp, tomcat6-admin-webapps, tomcat6-lib, tomcat6-jsp-2_1-api, libtcnative-1-0, apache2-mod_jk, jakarta-taglibs-standard, jakarta-commons-collections, jakarta-commons-dbcp, jakarta-commons-pool, jakarta-commons-httpclient3, jakarta-commons-beanutils, jakarta-commons-codec, jakarta-commons-collections, jakarta-commons-collections-tomcat5, jakarta-commons-daemon, jakarta-commons-dbcp-tomcat5, jakarta-commons-digester, jakarta-commons-discovery, jakarta-commons-el, jakarta-commons-fileupload, jakarta-commons-io, jakarta-commons-lang, jakarta-commons-launcher, jakarta-commons-logging, jakarta-commons-modeler, jakarta-commons-pool-tomcat5, jakarta-commons-validator, tomcat6-javadoc, jakarta-taglibs-standard-javadoc, jakarta-commons-*-javadoc, tomcat_apparmor, ant, ant-junit, ant-trax, and mx4j.

10.4.2. Security

  • Removable Media

    To allow a specific user to mount removable media, always run the following command as root

    polkit-auth --user joe --grant

    To allow all locally logged in users on the active console to mount removable media, run the following commands as root:

    echo ' no:no:yes' \
      >> /etc/polkit-default-privs.local
  • Verbose Audit Records for System User Management Tools

    Install the package "pwdutils-plugin-audit". To enable this plugin, add "audit" to /etc/pwdutils/logging . For more information, see the Security Guide.

10.4.3. Networking

  • Using the System as a Router

    As long as the firewall is active, the option ip_forwarding will be reset by the firewall module. To activate the system as a router, the variable FW_ROUTE has to be set too. This can be done through yast2-firewall or manually.

10.4.4. Cross Architecture Information Myricom 10-Gigabit Ethernet Driver and Firmware

SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 (x86, x86_64 and IA64) is using the Myri10GE driver from mainline Linux kernel. The driver requires a firmware file to be present, which is not being delivered with SUSE Linux Enterprise 11.

Download the required firmware at

10.5. AMD64/Intel64 64-bit (x86_64) and Intel/AMD 32-bit (x86) Specific Information

10.5.1. System and Vendor Specific Information

  • Boot device larger as 2 TiB

    Due to limitations in the legacy x86/x86_64 BIOS implementations booting from devices larger than 2 TiB is technically not possible using legacy partition tables (DOS MBR).

    With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1 we support installation and boot using uEFI on the x86_64 architecture and certified hardware.

  • i586 and i686 Machine with more than 16 GB of Memory

    Depending on the workload, i586 and i686 machines with 16GB-48GB of memory can run into instabilities. Machines with more than 48GB of memory are not supported at all. To run on such a machine, lower the memory with the mem= kernel boot option.

    In such memory scenarios we strongly recommend using a x86-64 system with 64-bit SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, and run the (32-bit) x86 applications on it.

  • NetXen 10G Ethernet Expansion Card on IBM BladeCenter HS12 system

    When installing SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 on a HS12 system with a "NetXen Incorporated BladeCenter-H 10 Gigabit Ethernet High Speed Daughter Card", the boot parameter pcie_aspm=off should be added.

  • NIC Enumeration

    Ethernet interfaces on some hardware do not get enumerated in a way that matches the marking on the chassis.

  • HP Linux ProLiant Support Pack for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11

    The HP Channel Interface Device Driver (hpilo) device driver has been submitted to the open source community as part of the upstream Linux kernel. This device driver replaces the two versions of channel interface drivers (hp_ilo, hpqci) previously shipped by HP in the hp-ilo RPM package. Due to changes in the API between driver versions, various utilities in the Linux ProLiant Support Pack require updates to properly communicate with hpilo. These utilities have been updated in Linux ProLiant Support Pack release 8.25.

    The hpilo driver is included in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11. Therefore, no hp-ilo package will be provided in the Linux ProLiant Support Pack for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.

    For more details, consult Novell TID 700273

  • HP High Performance Mouse for iLO Remote Console.

    The desktop in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 now recognizes the HP High Performance Mouse for iLO Remote Console and is configured to accept and process events from it. For the desktop mouse and the HP High Performance Mouse to stay synchronized, it is necessary to turn off mouse acceleration. As a result, the HP iLO2 High-Performance mouse (hpmouse) package is no longer needed with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 once one of the three following options are implemented.

    1. In a terminal run "xset m 1" -- this setting will not survive a reset of the desktop.

    2. (Gnome) In a terminal run "gconf-editor" and go to desktop->gnome->peripherals->mouse. Edit the "motion acceleration" field to be 1.

      (KDE) Open "Personal Settings (Configure Desktop)" in the menu and go to "Computer Administration"->Keyboard&Mouse->Mouse->Advanced and change "Pointer Acceleration" to become 1.

    3. (Gnome) In a terminal run "gnome-mouse-properties" and adjust the "Pointer Speed" slide scale until the HP High Performance Mouse and the desktop mouse run at the same speed across the screen. The recommended adjustment is close to the middle just to the "Slow" side.

    After acceleration is turned off, sync the desktop mouse and the ILO mouse by moving to the edges and top of the desktop to line them up in the vertical and horizontal directions. Also if the HP High Performance Mouse is disabled, pressing the <Ctrl> key will stop the desktop mouse and allow easier synching of the two pointers.

    For more details please consult Novell TID 7002735

  • Missing 32-bit compatibility libraries for libstdc++ and libg++ on 64-bit systems (x86_64)

    32-bit (x86) compatibility libraries like "" have been available on x86_64 in the package "compat-32-bit" with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10, and are also available on the SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11 medium (compat-32-bit-2009.1.19), but not included in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.


    The respective libraries had been deprecated back in 2001, and have been shipped in the compatibility package already with the release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 in 2004. The package was shipped with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 to provide a longer transition period for applications requiring the package.

    With the release of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 the compatibility package is no longer supported.


    In an effort to enable a longer transition period for applications still requiring this package, it has been moved to the unsupported "Extras" channel. This channel is visible on every SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 system, which has been registered with the Novell Customer Center, and it is also mirrored via SMT alongside the supported and maintained SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 channels.

    Packages in the "Extras" channel are not supported or maintained.

    The compatibility package is part of SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11 due to a policy difference with respect to deprecation and deprecated packages as compared to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.

    We encourage customers to work with Novell and Novell's partners to resolve dependencies on those old libraries.

  • 32-bit devel-packages missing from the Software Development Kit (x86_64)

    Example: libpcap0-devel-32-bit package was available in Software Development Kit 10, but is missing from Software Development Kit 11


    Novell supports running 32-bit applications on 64-bit architectures; respective runtime libraries are provided with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 and fully supported. With SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 we also provided 32-bit devel packages on the 64-bit Software Development Kit. Having 32-bit devel packages and 64-bit devel packages installed in parallel may lead to side-effects during the build process. Thus with SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 we started to remove some of (but not yet all) the 32-bit devel packages from the 64-bit Software Development Kit.


    With the development tools provided in the Software Development Kit 11, customers and partners have two options to build 32-bit packages in a 64-bit environment (see below). Beyond that, Novell's appliance offerings provide powerful environments for software building, packaging and delivery.

    • Use the "build" tool, which creates a chroot environment for building packages.

    • The Software Development Kit contains the software used for the openSUSE buildservice. Here the abstraction is provided by virtualization.

10.5.2. Virtualization

  • KVM

    KVM in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 is now fully supported on the x86_64 architecture. KVM is designed around hardware virtualization features included in both AMD (AMD-V) and Intel ((VT-x) CPUs produced within the past few years, as well as other virtualization features in even more recent PC chipsets and PCI devices. For example, device assignment using IOMMU and SR-IOV.

    The following Web sites identify processors which support hardware virtualization:



    The KVM kernel modules will not load if the basic hardware virtualization features are not present and enabled in the BIOS. If KVM does not start please please check the BIOS settings.

    KVM allows for memory overcommit and disk space overcommit. It is up to the user to understand the impact of doing so however, as hard errors resulting from actually exceeding available resources will result in guest failures. Cpu overcommit is also supported but carries performance implications.

    The following guest operating systems are supported:

    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 as fully virtualized; the following virtualization aware drivers are available: kvm-clock, virtio-net, virtio-block, virtio-balloon

    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP3 as fully virtualized; the following virtualization aware drivers are available: kvm-clock, virtio-net, virtio-block, virtio-balloon

    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 SP4 as fully virtualized (for 32 bit kernel: specify clock=pmtmr on linux boot line; for 64 bit kernel: specify ignore_lost_ticks on linux boot line

    For further details, see /usr/share/doc/packages/kvm/kvm-supported.txt

  • VMI Kernel (x86, 32-bit only)

    Since VMWare and SUSE and the community did improve the infrastructure in the kernel in a way that VMI is not necessary any more, starting with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1 the separate VMI kernel flavor is now obsolete and therefore was dropped from the media. Upon upgrade it would be automatically replaced by the PAE kernel flavor, which assures customers can take advantage of all the features which were included in the separate VMI kernel flavor.

  • CPU overcommit and fully virtualized guest

    Novell and our partners are currently evaluating reports that with CPU overcommitment in place and under heavy load fully virtualized guests may become unresponsive or hang.

    Paravirtualized guests work flawlessly with CPU overcommitment also under heavy load.

    This is addressed with high priority. We will issue a maintenance update via once this has been resolved.

  • IBM System X x3850/x3950 with ATI Radeon 7000/VE video cards and Xen Hypervisor

    When installing SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 on IBM System X x3850/x3950 with ATI Radeon 7000/VE video cards, the boot parameter 'vga=0x317' needs to be added to avoid video corruption during the installation process.

    Graphical environment (X11) in XEN is not supported on IBM System X x3850/x3950 with ATI Radeon 7000/VE video cards.

  • Video mode selection for Xen kernels

    In a few cases, following the installation of Xen, the hypervisor does not boot into the GUI. To work around this issue, modify /boot/grub/menu.lst and replace vga=<number> with vga=mode-<number>. For example, if the setting for your native kernel is vga=0x317, then for Xen you will need to use vga=mode-0x317.

  • Time synchronization in Paravirtualized Domains with NTP.

    Paravirtualized (PV) DomUs usually get the time from the hypervisor. If you want to run "ntp" in PV DomUs, the DomU must be decoupled from the Dom0's time. At runtime this is done with:

    echo 1 > /proc/sys/xen/independent_wallclock

    To set this at boot time:

    1. Either append "independent_wallclock=1" to kernel cmd line in DomU's grub configuration file

    2. Or append "xen.independent_wallclock = 1" to /etc/sysctl.conf in the DomU.

  • If you encounter time synchronization issues with Paravirtualized Domains, we encourage you to use NTP.

10.6. Intel Itanium (ia64) Specific Information

  • Installation on systems with many LUNs (storage)

    While the number of LUNs for a running system is virtually unlimited, we suggest not having more than 64 LUNs online while installing the system, to reduce the time to initialize and scan the devices and thus reduce the time to install the system in general.

10.7. POWER (ppc64) Specific Information

  • Supported Hardware / Systems

    All POWER3, POWER4, PPC970 and RS64–based models that were supported by SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 are no longer supported.

  • Loading the installation kernel via network on POWER

    With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 the bootfile DVD1/suseboot/inst64 can not be booted directly via network anymore, because its size is larger than 12MB. To load the installation kernel via network, copy the files, yaboot.cnf and inst64 from the DVD1/suseboot directory to the TFTP server. Rename the yaboot.cnf file to yaboot.conf. yaboot can also load config files for specific ethernet MAC addresses. Use a name like yaboot.conf-01-23-45-ab-cd-ef match a MAC address. An example yaboot.conf for TFTP booting looks like this:

        append="quiet install=nfs://hostname/exported/sles11dir"

    Note that this will not work on POWER4 systems. Their firmware can only load files up to 12MB via TFTP.

  • Huge Page Memory Support on POWER

    Huge Page Memory (16GB pages, enabled via HMC) is supported by the Linux Kernel, but special kernel parameters must be used to enable this support. Boot with the parameters "hugepagesz=16G hugepages=N" in order to use the 16GB huge pages, where N is the number of 16GB pages assigned to the partition via the HMC. The number of 16GB huge pages available can not be changed once the partition is booted. Also, there are some restrictions if huge pages are assigned to a partition in combination with eHEA / eHCA adapters:

    IBM eHEA Ethernet Adapter:

    The eHEA module will fail to initialize any eHEA ports if huge pages are assigned to the partition and Huge Page kernel parameters are missing. Thus, no huge pages should be assigned to the partition during a network installation. To support huge pages after installation, the huge page kernel parameters need to be added to the boot loader configuration before huge pages are assigned to the partition.

    IBM eHCA InfiniBand Adapter:

    The current eHCA device driver is not compatible with huge pages. If huge pages are assigned to a partition, the device driver will fail to initialize any eHCA adapters assigned to the partition.

  • Installation on POWER onto IBM vscsi target

    The installation on a vscsi client will fail with old versions of the AIX VIO server. Please upgrade the AIX VIO server to version or later.

  • iSCSI installations with multiple NICs may lose network connectivity at the end of firstboot stage

    After installing SLES 11 SP1 on an iSCSI target system boots properly, network is up and the iSCSI root device is found as expected, and the install completes (firstboot part) as usual. However, at the end of firstboot, network is shut down before the root filesystem is unmounted, leading to read failures accessing the root (iSCSI) device; the system hangs.

    Solution: reboot the system.

  • IBM Linux VSCSI server support in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11

    Customers using SLES 9 or SLES 10 to serve Virtual SCSI to other LPARs, using the ibmvscsis driver, who wish to migrate from these releases, should consider migrating to the IBM Virtual I/O server. The IBM Virtual I/O server supports all the IBM PowerVM virtual I/O features as well as provides integration with the Virtual I/O management capabilities of the HMC. It can be downloaded at:

  • Virtual Fibre Channel devices

    When using IBM Power Virtual Fibre Channel devices utilizing N-Port ID Virtualization, the Virtual I/O Server may need to be updated in order to function correctly. Linux requires VIOS 2.1, Fixpack 20.1, and the LinuxNPIV I-Fix in order for this feature to function properly. These updates can be downloaded from the following URL:

  • Virtual Tape Devices

    When using virtual tape devices served by an AIX VIO server, the Virtual I/O Server may need to be updated in order to function correctly. The latest updates can be downloaded from the following URL:

  • For further information regarding IBM Virtual I/O Server documentation please see:

  • ITrace

    Using the ITrace instrumentation library, libperfutil, to start and stop tracing on your application may result in a system hang. A workaround for this problem is to insert a call to ITraceDisable() prior to calling ITrace_off() in your instrumented application.

  • Chelsio cxgb3 iSCSI offload engine

    The Chelsio hardware supports ~16K packet size (the exact value depends on the system configuration). It is recommended that you set the parameter MaxRecvDataSegmentLength in /etc/iscsid.conf to 8192.

    For the cxgb3i driver to work properly, this parameter needs to be set to 8192.

    In order to use the cxgb3i offload engine, the cxgb3i module needs to be loaded manually after open-scsi has been started.

    For additional information, refer to /usr/src/linux/Documentation/scsi/cxgb3i.txt in the kernel source tree.

  • Known TFTP issues with yaboot

    When attempting to netboot yaboot users may see the following error message: "Can't claim memory for TFTP download (01800000 @ 01800000-04200000)" and the netboot will stop and immediately display the yaboot "boot:" prompt. Use the following steps to work around the problem.

    • Reboot the system and at the IBM splash screen select '8' to get to an Open Firmware prompt "0>"

    • At the Open Firmware prompt type the following commands

      		'setenv load-base 4000'
      		'setenv real-base c00000'
      		'dev /packages/gui obe'

    • The second command will take the system back to the IBM splash screen and the netboot can be attempted again.

  • Graphical administration of remotely installed hardware

    If you do a remote installation in text mode, but want to connect to the machine later in graphical mode, please be sure to set the default runlevel to 5 via YaST. Otherwise it might be, that xdm/kdm/gdm will not be started.

  • The itrace tracing software may affect GDB functionality

    After using the itrace program, a subsequent GDB session may repeatedly stop the debugged program, failing with the error message "Program received signal ?, Unknown signal." or "warning: Signal ? does not exist on this system."

    To solve the problem, please unload the itrace kernel module by running the /usr/bin/ program.

  • InfiniBand - SDP protocol is not supported on IBM hardware

    To disable SDP on IBM hardware please set SDP=no in openib.conf so that by default SDP is not loaded. After you have set this setting in openib.conf to 'no' please run "openibd restart" or reboot the system for this setting to take effect.

  • RDMA NFS Server May Hang During Shutdown (OFED)

    If your system is configured as an NFS over RDMA server, the system may hang during a shutdown if a remote system has an active NFS over RDMA mount. To avoid this problem, prior to shutting down the system, run "openibd stop"; run it in the background, because the command will hang and otherwise block the console:

    /etc/init.d/openibd stop &

    A shutdown can now be run cleanly.

    Note: the steps to configure and start NFS over RDMA are as follows:

    • On the server system:

      1. Add an entry to the file /etc/exports, for example:

      2. As the root user run the commands:

        /etc/init.d/nfsserver start
        echo rdma 20049 > /proc/fs/nfsd/portlist
    • On the client system:

      1. Run the command: modprobe xprtrdma.

      2. Mount the remote filesystem using the command /sbin/mount.nfs. Specify the ip address of the ip over ib network interface (ib0, ib1...) of the server and the options: proto=rdma,port=20049, for example:

        /sbin/mount.nfs /mnt \
        -o proto=rdma,port=20049,nolock

10.8. System z (s390x) Specific Information

  • IBM System z Architecture Level Set (ALS) preparation

    To exploit new IBM System z architecture capabilities during lifecycle of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 support for machines of type z900, z990, z800, z890 is deprecated in this release. Novell plans to introduce an ALS earliest with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1 (SP1), latest with SP2. After ALS SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 only executes on z9 or newer processors.

    With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 GA only machines of type z9 or newer are supported.

    When developing software, we recommend to switch gcc to z9/z10 optimization:

    • install gcc

    • install gcc-z9 package (change gcc options to -march=z9-109 -mtune=z10)

  • The minimum required machine loader level for IPL of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 from a SCSI disk is v1.4 which is included in the follow MCLs:

    • z9, driver 67L, MCL G40943.001

    • z10, driver 75J, no MCL required on top of GA-level

    For older levels of the machine loader, the ramdisk load address of the installed SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 system needs to be manually changed from 0x2000000 to 0x1000000. To do this, open the /etc/zipl.conf file and change lines containing ramdisk = <initrd filename>,0x2000000 into ramdisk = <initrd filename>,0x1000000and run the zipl command afterwards. Note that this workaround may not work on systems with large amount of memory.

  • For LUN Scanning to work properly, the minimum Storage firmware level should be:

    • DS8000 Code Bundle Level

    • DS6000 Code Bundle Level

  • Large Page support in IBM System z

    Possibility for processes to allocate process memory in chunks of 1 MByte instead of 4 KByte. This works through the hugetlbfs.

  • Collaborative memory management Stage II (CMM2) currently not available

    IBM and Novell are working to integrate this technology into the Linux Kernel and move it to a supported solution in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server as soon as available upstream.

  • Issue with SLES 11 and NSS under z/VM

    Starting SLES 11 under z/VM with NSS sometimes makes guest to logoff by itself.

    Solution: IBM addresses this issue with APAR VM64578.

Chapter 11. Resolved Issues

  • Bugfixes

    This Service Pack contains all the latest bugfixes for each package released via the maintenance Web since the GA version.

  • Security Fixes

    This Service Pack contains all the latest security fixes for each package released via the maintenance Web since the GA version.

  • Program Temporary Fixes

    This Service Pack contains all the PTFs (Program Temporary Fix) for each package released via the maintenance Web since the GA version which were suitable for integration into the maintained common codebase.

Chapter 12. Technical Information

This section contains information about system limits, a number of technical changes and enhancements for the experienced user.

When talking about CPUs we are following this terminology:

  • CPU Socket

    The visible physical entity, as it is typically mounted to a motherboard or an equivalent.

  • CPU Core

    The (usually not visible) physical entity as reported by the CPU vendor.

    On System z this is equivalent to an IFL.

  • Logical CPU

    This is what the Linux Kernel recognizes as a "CPU".

    We avoid the word "Thread" (which is sometimes used), as the word "thread" would also become ambiguous subsequently.

  • Virtual CPU

    A logical CPU as seen from within a Virtual Machine.

12.1. Kernel Limits

This table summarizes the various limits, which exist in our recent kernels and utilities (if related) for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.

SLES 11 (2.6.27)x86ia64x86_64s390xppc64

CPU bits






max. # Logical CPUs






max. RAM (theoretical / certified)

64/16 GiB

1 PiB/8+ TiB

64 TiB/16 TiB

4 TiB/256 GiB

1 PiB/512 GiB

max. user-/kernelspace

3/1 GiB

2 EiB/φ

128 TiB/128 TiB


2 TiB/2 EiB

max. swap space

up to 29 * 64 GB (i386 and x86_64) or 30 * 64 GB (other architectures)

max. #processes


max. #threads per process

tested with more than 120000; maximum limit depends on memory and other parameters

max. size per block device

up to 16 TiB

and up to 8 EiB on all 64-bit architectures



12.2. KVM Limits

Guest RAM size

512 Gb

Virtual CPUs per guest


Maximum number of NICs per guest


Block devices per guest

4 emulated, 20 para-virtual

Maximum number of guests

Limit is defined as the total number of vcpus in all guests being no greater than 8 times the number of cpu cores in the host

12.3. Xen Limits

SLES 11 SP1x86x86_64

CPU bits



Logical CPUs (Xen Hypervisor)



Virtual CPUs per VM



Maximum supported memory (Xen Hypervisor)

16 GiB

2 TiB

Maximum supported memory (Dom0)

16 GiB

512 GiB

Virtual memory per VM

128 MiB-32 GiB

128 MiB-256 GiB

Total virtual devices per host



Maximum number of NICs per host


Maximum number of vNICs per guest


Maximum number of guests per host


In Xen 4.0, the hypervisor bundled with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 SP1, dom0 is able to see and handle a maximum of 512 logical CPU. The hypervisor itself however, can access up to logical 256 logical CPUs and schedule those for the VMs.

The use of a 32-bit hypervisor as a virtualization host is deprecated but provided for migration purposes. SUSE may remove this functionality with a future service pack. 32-bit virtual guests are not affected and are fully supported with the provided 64-bit hypervisor.

12.4. Filesystems

SUSE Linux Enterprise was the first enterprise Linux distribution to support journaling filesystems and logical volume managers back in 2000. Today, we have customers running XFS and ReiserFS with more than 8TiB in one filesystem, and our own SUSE Linux Enterprise engineering team is using all 3 major Linux journaling filesystems for all its servers.

We are excited to add the OCFS2 cluster filesystem to the range of supported filesystems in SUSE Linux Enterprise.

We propose to use XFS for large-scale filesystems, on systems with heavy load and multiple parallel read- and write-operations (e.g for file serving with Samba, NFS, etc.). XFS has been developed to be used under those conditions, while typical desktop use (single write or read) will not necessarily benefit from it's capabilities.

Due to technical limitations (of the bootloader), we do not support XFS to be used for /boot, though.

FeatureExt 3Reiserfs 3.6XFSBtrfs *OCFS 2 **

Data/Metadata Journaling




n/a *


Journal internal/external




n/a *


Offline extend/shrink






Online extend/shrink






Sparse Files

Tail Packing


Extended Attributes/ Access Control Lists








Blocksize default


max. Filesystemsize

16 TiB

16 TiB

8 EiB

16 EiB

16 TiB

max. Filesize

2 TiB

1 EiB

8 EiB

16 EiB

1 EiB

* Btrfs is provided as a Technology Preview in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 1. Btrfs is a copy-on-write logging-style file system, so rather than needing to journal changes before writing them in-place, it writes them in a new location, and then links it in. Until the last write, the new changes are not "committed".

** OCFS2 is fully supported as part of the SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability Extension.

The maximum file size above can be larger than the filesystem's actual size due to usage of sparse blocks. It should also be noted that unless a filesystem comes with large file support (LFS), the maximum file size on a 32-bit system is 2 GB (2^31 bytes). Currently all of our standard filesystems (including ext3 and ReiserFS) have LFS, which gives a maximum file size of 2^63 bytes in theory. The numbers in the above tables assume that the filesystems are using 4 KiB block size. When using different block sizes, the results are different, but 4 KiB reflects the most common standard.

In this document: 1024 Bytes = 1 KiB; 1024 KiB = 1 MiB; 1024 MiB = 1 GiB; 1024 GiB = 1 TiB; 1024 TiB = 1 PiB; 1024 PiB = 1 EiB. See also

NFSv4 with IPv6 is only supported for the client side. A NFSv4 server with IPv6 is not supported.

This version of Samba delivers integration with Windows 7 Active Directory Domains. In addition we provide the clustered version of this Samba version as part of SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability 11 SP1.

12.5. Kernel Modules

An important requirement for every Enterprise operating system is the level of support a customer can get for his environment. Kernel modules are the most relevant connector between hardware ("controllers") and the operating system. Every kernel module in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 has a flag 'supported' with three possible values: "yes", "external", "" (empty, not set, "unsupported").

The following rules apply:

  • All modules of a self-recompiled kernel are by default marked as unsupported.

  • Kernel Modules supported by SUSE partners and delivered using SUSE's Partner Linux Driver process are marked "external".

  • If the "supported" flag is not set, loading a module will taint the kernel. Kernels which are tainted are not supported. To avoid this, not supported Kernel modules are included in an extra RPM (kernel-<flavor>-extra) and will not be loaded by default ("flavor"=default|smp|xen|...). In addition, those unsupported modules are not available in the installer, and the package kernel-$flavor-extra is not on the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server media.

  • Kernel Modules not provided under a license compatible to the License of the Linux Kernel will also taint the Kernel; see /usr/src/linux/Documentation/sysctl/kernel.txt and cf. the state of "/proc/sys/kernel/tainted".

Technical Background

  • Linux Kernel

    The value of /proc/sys/kernel/unsupported defaults to 2 on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 ("do not warn in syslog when loading unsupported modules"). This is the default used in the installer as well as in the installed system. See /usr/src/linux/Documentation/sysctl/kernel.txt for more information.

  • modprobe

    The "modprobe" utility for checking module dependencies and loading modules appropriately checks for the value of the "supported" flag. If the value is "yes" or "external" the module will be loaded, otherwise it will not. See below, for information on how to override this.

    Note: SUSE does not generally support removing of storage modules via modprobe -r.

Working with unsupported modules

While the general supportability requirement is important, there might occur situations, where loading an unsupported module seems appropriate or is required (e.g., for testing or debugging purposes, or if your hardware vendor provides a hotfix):

  • You can override the default by changing the variable allow_unsupported_modules in /etc/modprobe.d/unsupported-modules and set the value to "1".

    If you only want to try loading a module once, the --allow-unsupported-modules command-line switch can be used with modprobe. (see: man modprobe).

  • During installation, unsupported modules may be added through driver update disks, and they will be loaded.

    To enforce loading of unsupported modules during boot and afterwards, please use the kernel command line option oem-modules.

    While installing and initializing the module-init-tools package, the kernel flag "TAINT_NO_SUPPORT" ("/proc/sys/kernel/tainted") will be evaluated. If the kernel is already tainted, allow_unsupported_modules will be enabled. This will prevent unsupported modules from failing in the system being installed. (If no unsupported modules are present during installation and the other special kernel command line option is not used, the default will still be to disallow unsupported modules.)

  • If you install unsupported modules after the initial installation and want to enable those modules to be loaded during system boot, do not forget to run depmod and mkinitrd.

Note: Loading and running unsupported modules will make the kernel and the whole system unsupported by SUSE.

12.6. IPv6 Implementation and Compliance

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 is compliant to IPv6 Logo Phase 2. However, when running the respective tests, you may see some tests failing. For various reasons, we cannot enable all the configuration options by default, which are necessary to pass all the tests. Please find details below.

  • Section 3: RFC 4862 - IPv6 Stateless Address Autoconfiguration

    Some tests fail because of the default DAD handling in Linux; disabling the complete interface is possible, but not the default behavior (because security-wise, this might open a DoS attack vector, a malicious node on a network could shutdown the complete segment) this is still conforming to RFC 4862: the shutdown of the interface is a "should", not a mandatory ("must") rule.

    The Linux kernel allows you to change the default behavior with a sysctl parameter. To do this on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11, you need to make the following changes in configuration:

    • Add ipv6 to the modules load early on boot

      Edit /etc/sysconfig/kernel and add ipv6 to MODULES_LOADED_ON_BOOT e.g. MODULES_LOADED_ON_BOOT="ipv6" This is needed for the second change to work, if ipv6 is not loaded early enough, setting the sysctl fails.

    • Add the following lines to /etc/sysctl.conf

      ## shutdown IPV6 on MAC based duplicate address detection
      net.ipv6.conf.default.accept_dad = 2
      net.ipv6.conf.all.accept_dad = 2
      net.ipv6.conf.eth0.accept_dad = 2
      net.ipv6.conf.eth1.accept_dad = 2

      Note: if you use other interfaces (e.g. eth2), please modify the lines. With these changes, all tests for RFC 4862 should pass.

  • Section 4: RFC 1981 - Path MTU Discovery for IPv6

    • Test v6LC.4.1.10: Multicast Destination - One Router

    • Test v6LC.4.1.11: Multicast Destination - Two Routers

    On these two tests ping6 needs to be told to allow defragmentation of multicast packets. Newer ping6 versions have this disabled by default. Use: ping6 -M want <other parameters>. see man ping6 for more information

  • Enable IPv6 in Yast for SCTP support

    SCTP is dependent on IPv6, so in order to successfully insert the SCTP module, IPv6 must be enabled in YaST. This allows for the IPv6 module to be automatically inserted when `modprobe sctp` is called.

12.7. Other Technical Information

  • Log Files on tmpfs Filesystem Is Unsupported

    Ensure all your logs go through permanent local storage or the network. For example, putting /var/log on a tmpfs filesystem means that they will not survive a system boot which limits your ability, and the one of SUSE, to analyze log files in case of a support request.

    An exception are configurations where you save log files via syslog on a remote log server and store them there permanently. But note that not all log files can be redirected to a remote log server (e.g. yast-logs, boot logs and others); if these files are not available, support may be very hard to effectively diagnose issues and support the system.

  • libica 2.0.2 is available in SLES 11 SP1 for s390x customers

    The libica package contains the interface library routines used by IBM modules to interface with IBM Cryptographic Hardware (ICA). Starting with SLES 11 SP1, libica is provided in the s390x distribution in two flavors of packages: libica-1_3_9 and libica-2_0_2, providing libica versions 1.3.9 and 2.0.2 respectively.

    libica 1.3.9 is provided for compatibility reasons with legacy hardware present e.g. in the ppc64 architecture. For s390x users it's always recommended to use the new libica 2.0.2 library since it supports all newer s390x hardware, larger key sizes and is backwards compatible with any ICA device driver in the s390x architecture.

    You may choose to continue using libica 1.3.9 if you don't have newer Cryptographic hardware to exploit or wish continue using custom applications that don't support the libica 2.0.2 library yet. Both openCryptoki and openssl-ibmca, the two main exploiters for the libica interface, are provided in SLES 11 SP1 to support the newer libica 2.0.2 library.

  • Changes to network setup

    The script modify_resolvconf is removed in favor of a more versatile script called netconfig. This new script handles specific network settings from multiple sources more flexibly and transparently. Please review the documentation and man-page of netconfig for more details.

  • Memory cgroups

    Memory cgroups are now disabled for machines where they cause memory exhaustion and crashes. Namely, X86 32-bit systems with PAE support and more than 8G in any memory node have this feature disabled.

  • MCELog

    The mcelog package logs and parses/translates Machine Check Exceptions (MCE) on hardware errors (also including memory errors). Formerly this has been done by a cronjob executed hourly. Now hardware errors are immediately processed by an mcelog daemon.

    However the mcelog service is not enabled by default resulting in memory and CPU errors also not being logged by default. In addition, mcelog has a new feature to also handle predictive bad page offlining and automatic core offlining when cache errors happen.

    The service can either be enabled via commandline with

    	chkconfig mcelog on
    	rcmcelog start 

    or via the YaST runlevel editor.

  • Locale Settings in ~/.i18n

    If you are not satisfied with locale system defaults, change the settings in ~/.i18n. Entries in ~/.i18n override system defaults from /etc/sysconfig/language. Use the same variable names but without the RC_ namespace prefixes; for example, use LANG instead of RC_LANG. For more information about locales in general, see "Language and Country-Specific Settings" in the Reference Manual.

  • Configuration of kdump

    The kernel is crashing or otherwise misbehaving and a kernel core dump needs to be captured for analysis.

    Please use YaST (System->Kernel Kdump) to configure your environment.

  • JPackage Standard for Java Packages

    Java packages are changed to follow the JPackage Standard ( Please read the documentation in /usr/share/doc/packages/jpackage-utils/ for more information.

  • Pulseaudio

    For better sound functionality on SUSE Linux Enterprise systems we strongly recommend that pulseaudio 0.9.14 or higher is installed. This version is available via maintenance channels for SUSE Linux Enterprise systems registered with Novell.

  • Stopping Cron Status Messages

    To avoid the mail-flood caused by cron status messages, the default value of SEND_MAIL_ON_NO_ERROR in /etc/sysconfig/cron is now set to "no" for new installations. Even with this setting to "no", cron data output will still be send to the MAILTO address, as documented in the cron manpage. In the update case it is recommended to set these values according to your needs.

Chapter 13. Documentation and Other Information

Chapter 14. Legal Notices

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Further, Novell, Inc. makes no representations or warranties with respect to any software, and specifically disclaims any express or implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose. Further, Novell, Inc. reserves the right to make changes to any and all parts of Novell software, at any time, without any obligation to notify any person or entity of such changes.

Any products or technical information provided under this Agreement may be subject to U.S. export controls and the trade laws of other countries. You agree to comply with all export control regulations and to obtain any required licenses or classifications to export, re-export, or import deliverables. You agree not to export or re-export to entities on the current U.S. export exclusion lists or to any embargoed or terrorist countries as specified in U.S. export laws. You agree to not use deliverables for prohibited nuclear, missile, or chemical/biological weaponry end uses. Please refer to for more information on exporting Novell software. Novell assumes no responsibility for your failure to obtain any necessary export approvals.

Copyright (c) 2010 Novell, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, photocopied, stored on a retrieval system, or transmitted without the express written consent of the publisher.

Novell, Inc. has intellectual property rights relating to technology embodied in the product that is described in this document. In particular, and without limitation, these intellectual property rights may include one or more of the U.S. patents listed at and one or more additional patents or pending patent applications in the U.S. and other countries.

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Thanks for using SUSE Linux Enterprise Server in your business.

The SUSE Linux Enterprise Server Team.