Red Hat and HP are collaborating to bundle Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and other tools on HP blade servers for the first time.

At this week's LinuxWorld expo, the companies introduced a software bundle designed to slide on to HP's BladeSystem hardware. The initiative is part of Red Hat's collaboration with HP's BladeSystem Solution Builder programme, designed to help simplify and accelerate the deployment of blade servers.

Red Hat Network products will be offered with an HP BladeSystem toolkit consisting of Red Hat Global File System (GFS) which becomes available with HP Serviceguard for Linux - ServiceGuard is HP's clustering software and GFS is Red Hat's clustering file system. The two companies said that the two systems have been tested together for compatibility.

Buyers get RHEL and a provisioning module, plus Red Hat Network Proxy, available for the first time to HP's blade users; HP also claimed to be the first vendor to support a bundle with Red Hat Network, which allows IT managers to re-purpose and provision a blade server in minutes. The toolkit also includes automatic detection and configuration tools that support HP ProLiant Integrated Lights Out remote management.

"There has been tremendous growth in the demand for the lower-cost, more flexible scale-out architectures afforded by blade environments and Linux clusters," said Red Hat marketing man Tim Yeaton. "Red Hat and HP are bringing to market solutions that will give customers the high levels of availability they need with outstanding value."

"Customers use Linux today for the flexibility and control of open source. As a solution platform, customers are utilising HP BladeSystem for its efficient, modular and integrated infrastructure," said HP's BladeSystem product manager Rick Becker. "HP is proud to be the first to partner with Red Hat to offer a bundled Linux solution for blades - a winning combination of two technologies that deliver flexibility, performance and savings across the data center."

The bundle is expected to be available in September 2005. HP will also release a bundled product of HP Serviceguard for Linux and Red Hat GFS which should be available worldwide in the autumn.