Novell plans to unveil the first major update to its SuSe Linux Enterprise Real Time (SLERT) distribution next month, the company said this week.

SLERT is aimed at Wall Street traders and other organisations that need real-time functionality. Real-time software can carry out operations within a guaranteed time frame, something required for certain industries and to operate some kinds of electronics.

Novell developers worked with Concurrent Computer, which did much of the engineering work on the project, and released SLERT in 2006. Service Pack 1 (SP1) will include updates from SuSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP1, released this week.

SP1 supports quad-core processors in the Intel Xeon and AMD Opteron product lines. Also featured are improvements in interoperability and system management, Novell said.

High-availability storage infrastructure has been updated in the service pack and the platform's audit subsystem has been enriched, Novell said. The storage infrastructure features new versions of the open source Heartbeat high availability software and Oracle Cluster File System. The audit subsystem, which tracks transactions, now is complete.

Support for Novell Open Enterprise Server 2, which merges NetWare and Linux, also is featured.

Novell said it was teaming up with Voltaire to create a SLERT-based system called Voltaire Grid Backbone, designed to reduce latency in trading applications. Voltaire supplies SLERT-compatible InfiniBand switching systems and OFED 1.2 InfiniBand software.

Novell is also working on a revision of the SLERT real-time extensions with a focus on performance for massively threaded applications.

Infoworld's Paul Krill contributed to this report.