“With Fedora Core 6 Test 2 set to be released July 26th, it is time we announce the End of Life of our various Legacy supported releases. After much discussion on fedora-legacy-list and the #fedora-legacy IRC channel on the freenode network, we have decided to end of life the following releases when FC6 Test2 is released: Fedora Core 1 & 2, Red Hat Linux 7.3 & 9.” In the mean time, Red Hat is prepping its next big release, RHEL 5, supposedly a rival to Novell’s SLED 10.
Fedora Legacy Project Announces End of Life Times; RHEL 5 Prepped
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2006-07-24 12:39 pmRahul
If you read the announcement more closely, you will notice that Fedora 1 and 2 are EOL’ed when FC6 test 2 is released (Fedora Core 4 will move over to legacy at the same time) and Red Hat Linux 7.3 and 9 (8 was dropped due to lack of interest earlier) will be dropped only by the end of this year.
To get an idea of the updates cycle, you will have to look at the release dates
Fedora Core 1 – 5 November 2003
Fedora Core 2 – 18 May 2004
Red Hat Linux 7.3 – May 6 2002
Red Hat Linux 9 – March 31 2003
2006-07-24 1:46 pmDon T. Bothers
I agree with the original poster that pulling the plug on Fedora Core 1 and 2 seems premature. They will be only 3 years old at that time and have only received about a years worth of “Legacy” support. Seems to me that the Red Hat through the Fedora Project exerted some pressure on Fedora Legacy. Afterall, it seems very strange that the Legacy Project was able to have so many supported distributions for such a long time and then drops support for most of them so suddenly.
Thankfully, it doesn’t affect me at all since I use CentOS as my primary Linux distribution on my servers and Ubuntu LTS when I need to take advantage of its huge repository (like built-in Cacti and Nagios support.) However, I know a lot of companies who will be affected hard by this.
Edited 2006-07-24 13:47
2006-07-24 2:01 pmmkone
The thing that should keep legacy distribution ‘supported’ by Fedora legacy is interest in them. If there is not interest, then there is really no sense in maintaining them. I am sure the updates to date will continue to be available. If there is any interest, then the Legacy project should continue supporting them. I am sure this is not just a knee jerk action. It is quite carefully considered
Do you remember the article posted here about new testing for Fedora Core? ( http://trends.newsforge.com/trends/06/07/11/1431207.shtml?tid=138&t… ) In it, Will Woods said, “There’s always someone who will comment that Fedora is just Red Hat’s beta test for Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). It’s not true, and I want no one to have cause to say that ever again.”
The latest move by the Legacy Project certainly raises some questions as to why this is being done if FC is a full blown distribution. There is, after all, only about three years of support for the discontinued releases. I understand that support should be based on interest; it makes no sense to invest that time and effort if nobody will use it. Per the Fedora Wiki about the Legacy Project, it states that, “The Fedora Legacy Project is a community-supported open source project to extend the lifecycle of select ‘maintenance mode’ Red Hat Linux and Fedora Core distributions. Fedora Legacy is a formal project of the Fedora Project. Red Hat donates some services for it.” The word “community” also appears several more times in the wiki, which leads me to believe that this is a volunteer project (please correct me if I am wrong). If this is true, you really can’t complain about the work, or lack thereof, by volunteers; at least they are doing something, while people like me just use their work.
Skeptics could also say that Fedora is using planned obsolescence to force users to a newer release, thereby increasing the probability that they will find a bug that otherwise would have made it into the next RHEL. It’s farfetched, I know. However, Fedora will still encounter people who think thusly.
Try as they may, I don’t think that Fedora Core will ever shake the “beta” stigma. Yes, I know that each release is a fully functioning distribution (I use a variant of FC 4, modified and maintained by Boston University). However, it’s other issues like service which will keep people from looking at FC as anything other than a beta. It’s a game of semantics when Red Hat promotes both distributions as a fully functioning OS, but somehow FC is not a good choice for the corporate market. Personally, I understand the difference between FC and RHEL, but it does discredit FC as a truly desktop ready OS.
2006-07-24 3:20 pmRahul
If there is a interest anyone can always volunteer to increase the lifecycle of Fedora releases and yes its a volunteer project. Many other distributions have a even shorter lifecycle.
Edited 2006-07-24 15:21
2006-07-24 4:54 pmFinalzone
Fedora Core never aimed to be a corporate distro from the start. It is the choice of small/medium company to use it. The are plenty documentation of how-to rebuild rpm packages for these near defunct legacy distro. Within these years, maintainers would normally know how-to tune these distros or don’t need to change ”what is not broken doesn’t need to fix” and upgrade once they have thoroughly tested if necessary.
I have to agree that dropping many legacy distros are premature. However, bandwiths to maintain these huge amount of packages are not cheap so compromise had to be made. After all, legacy project had more than five distros to maintain which is a tremedous amount of work. In that sense, I understand the decision.
Remember that both FC3 and FC4 have the longest support for this kind of distribution which means that some school/small bussinesses may already upgraded for the pre-fedora distros or chose to keep the latter.
Edited 2006-07-24 17:12
I might have guessed that Fedora Legacy would make the somewhat strange-looking moves they’ve done with this announcement. If each RH/FC release had an equal number of volunteers willing to maintain it, then Fedora Legacy would surely retire legacy support in strict chronological order.
However, because there’s an unequal number of (or in some cases, “no”) volunteers to maintain the older RH/FC releases, we’ve seen an alternative strategy for retiring support. However, even this alternative strategy looks suspect – it started when Red Hat 8 (which Fedora folks claimed was barely installed anywhere anyway, but that’s just a guess on their part I suspect) legacy support was dropped, but Red Hat 7.3’s support was retained.
My opinion is that you should support a chronologically contiguous set of older releases, so that users have a clear “run anything older than this release and we can’t help you” message coming from the Fedora folks.
Instead, we start to get holes in the legacy support matrix that should never have been there. If RH 8 couldn’t be supported, then neither should have RH 7.3 (which will be based on even older software than RH 8 and arguably even harder to support than RH 8).
Zoom up to this latest announcement and we see this legacy support hole become a gaping chasm. RH 7.3, quite astonishingly, remains supported until October, despite every single piece of software – including a major kernel jump – being significantly older/different to anything since FC2 onwards.
We also strangely keep RH 9 until October too, but the kicker is losing Fedora Core 1 and 2 legacy support, despite the latter running a 2.6 kernel and moderately recent software. So we now have two holes in the legacy support matrix and a somewhat bizarre extension of the RH legacy support until October (heck, the distro isn’t even called Fedora Core, so quite why the *Fedora* Legacy team are supporting RH distros longer than two of their own *Fedora Core* releases is utterly bewildering – one suspects internal pressure from Red Hat there, to the detriment of FC1/2 users).
I think this announcement is a major mistake w.r.t. jumping the gun. I would ditch RH 7.3/9 when FC6T2 comes out, ditch FC1 when FC6 final comes out and ditch FC2 when FC7T2 comes out. Fedora Legacy should only go back – contiguously – as far as there are volunteers to support it. To leave gaps in the support matrix is simply the wrong way to go about things and leaves uncertainty in the minds of Fedora users.
Edited 2006-07-24 16:18
Totem player with support for WMA, WMV and MP3
F-spot digital photo browser
Very interesting. F-spot is one of Mono application which was not initially supported by Red Hat Enterprise. Looks like OIN (Open Invention Network) policy is in effect.
In its new corporate desktop, Red Hat is also trying to dazzle new users with improved digital camera integration, support for encrypted USB peripherals and use of Aiglx, or Accelerated Indirect GLX (AIGLX), which is the foundation for GLX-acclerated effects.
The article should mention that AIGLX is part of Xorg 7.1. Nevertheless, it appears to be another round of X-on-OpenGL vs AIGLX using Nvidia word.
It is simple. Redhat no longer wants to put the resources into supporting the “older” distros they have put out. FC is a beta for Redhat, as OpenSuse is the beta for SLED. Both of these projects have paid developers from the respective companies, which control the projects fully. You all seem surprised due to the supposed open nature and the false “community” involvement. The only community in either of these projects is the paid developers that call all the shots, to include deciding which bugs will be fixed and which ones they tell the submitter ‘We are sorry, your bug is not important to us so we will not fix it.’ Yes, I’m a bit bitter at the current state of these distros and the lack of professionalism involved with these companies.
At least Microsoft supports products for a minimum of 5 years, but that is still not good enough to listen to some folks on here.
2006-07-25 11:31 amthebluesgnr
If you want long-term support, Fedora is not aimed at you. How difficult is that to understand?
It doesn’t mean Fedora is beta, it’s just not targeted at the enterprise.
I remember back in the day Slackware and Debian users would say Red Hat was a beta quality distribution (see gcc 2.96 for an example). Now it’s the same old problem, some people just can’t accept that some operating systems have different focus than others.
About the bug fixing, Red Hat employees will fix the bugs that their customers want fixed. Same for Microsoft, Apple and any software company in the world. The difference with Fedora, openSUSE and other Free software projects is that it’s not just one company that has the power to fix bugs.
2006-07-25 11:48 amDrillSgt
You are correct that Fedora is not targeted at enterprise, or for long term support. That was not my point at all. RHEL uses the Fedora code once it is fixed, that by definition being beta. No one but RH employees can say what gets fixed in Fedora, as it is fully controlled by Redhat. There is no true community as has been explained to me in emails when attempted contributions were made. Continue to believe what you will, however I know the facts. I accept there is different focus, but the total focus and purpose of Fedora is to be the base for RHEL, nothing more.
2006-07-25 2:13 pmthebluesgnr
No one but RH employees can say what gets fixed in Fedora, as it is fully controlled by Redhat.
Oh, really? Please point me to a single patch you submitted and was rejected because it wasn’t developed by Red Hat.
The purpose of the Fedora project is to develop an operating system, and the OS they deliver is one of the most popular among Linux users, used in production systems by the majority of these people. That’s a bit weird for a system that is “beta by definition”.
2006-07-25 7:25 pmDrillSgt
“Oh, really? Please point me to a single patch you submitted and was rejected because it wasn’t developed by Red Hat.”
I did not submit patches, but bugs. I am not a developer by any means, but I do administer systems. On all bugs submitted by me the answer is ‘Won’t fix’. When I asked why the statement is that Redhat does not deem these bugs a problem to them. I have heard others without this happening, but for me not the case. Maybe I give off a bad vibe or something, but the fact remains that whether it is used in production systems or not is irrelevant on whether that is what it is designed to do. The Fedora project does have the purpose of designing an OS, which CAN be used by people to do things with however they choose, but it’s ultimate purpose is to be the test bed for Redhat products, hence why it is controlled, and tightly, by Redhat. Please do point me in the right direction if I am really mistaken, just my experience says otherwise only being a lowly user and not a developer. For example a person can not simply start submitting patches in the first place to my knowledge, as to even register a bug I had to go through hoops.
2006-07-25 2:35 pmRahul
Can you point to me the bugs filed by you which were closed as wontfix and where did you get any statements from Red Hat?
There are more packages in Fedora Extras than in Fedora Core currently and the large majority of those packages are packaged and maintained by a volunteer community
Fedora also is the basis of the OLPC platform
There are various offshots and projects in Fedora which has isnt controlled by Red Hat at all. So your impressions seem to not match reality to me.
I respect very much the fedora legacy project — there are maybe a handful of distros that provide free suport for such old versions of fedora/redhat.
But, with this move, they’ll be cutting pratically all of the releases still supported, site is kinda down but from google cache they were supporting redhat 7.3 & 9, fedora core 1, 2 & 3, so basically, from now only fedora core >=3 is supported, and I think that may be jumping the gun for the people running older versions, and cutting too many versions at once.
But anyways thanks for the nice work so far =)
Also, thank you Novell for starting the enterprise linux desktop “war”: seems that with novell’s release, red hat is finally trying for the enterprise desktop again.
Edited 2006-07-24 12:27