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Friday, 11 December 2020 10:09

CentOS founder's new distro, Rocky Linux, to replace what Red Hat killed Featured

CentOS founder's new distro, Rocky Linux, to replace what Red Hat killed Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

The founder of the CentOS project, Gregory M. Kurtzer, has set up a new distribution called Rocky Linux, and aims to replicate what he did with CentOS – provide users with a distro that is similar to Red Hat Enterprise Linux, apart from the trademarks.

Kurtzer, the chief executive of a company known as Control Command, set up CentOS in 2002, and it was initially intended "to be a build platform for the new RPM-based community-maintained distribution Caos Linux".

On his website, Kurtzer said: "When it was designed to be released to the public, it was originally coined as Caos-EL (Enterprise Linux) and it was renamed publicly in December 2003 to what it is known as today.

"After founding the project I led it until 2005 and I was responsible for all of its initial leadership, management, public outreach and partnerships during that period.

"Due to legal, political, and severely less then excellent people, I was forced to relinquish leadership of the project to a party in the UK (where it stayed until the core developers were able to regain control of the project)."

Red Hat said on Wednesday AEDT that it was shutting down the CentOS project which it made a part of itself in 2014.

The company's community manager Rich Bowen said CentOS Linux 8, as a rebuild of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, would be decommissioned at the end of 2021.

Instead, Bowen said, "The future of the CentOS Project is CentOS Stream, and over the next year we’ll be shifting focus from CentOS Linux, the rebuild of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, to CentOS Stream, which tracks just ahead of a current RHEL release."

The announcement caused anger, frustration and annoyance among users of CentOS as this would essentially make it a testing ground for RHEL, rather than the same, apart from the lack of trademarks. A petition has been started on, aiming to get the decision reversed.

Of the new project, Kurtzer wrote: "Rocky Linux is a community enterprise operating system designed to be 100% bug-for-bug compatible with Red Hat Enterprise Linux now that CentOS has shifted direction.

"It is under intensive development by the community. Rocky Linux is led by Gregory Kurtzer, founder of the CentOS project. There is no ETA for a release. Contributors are asked to reach out using the communication options offered on this site."

Red Hat was bought by IBM for US$34 billion (A$45.1 billion) in 2019. In its last full-year results, for the 12 months that ended on 28 February 2019, Red Hat reported US$3.4 billion in revenue.

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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