CentOS Linux End Of Life

Linode Staff

The CentOS Project recently announced that CentOS Linux support is ending in favor of CentOS Stream. What does this mean for me?

20 Replies

CentOS recently announced on their blog that CentOS Linux would be ending, and that support will be shifting to CentOS Stream. The major difference between these two is that the Linux version tracks behind RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux), whereas Stream tracks before RHEL. This means Stream will have a quicker update cycle and may be more prone to bugs or other stability issues.

Make sure to read the full CentOS Blog for more information. On that blog you’ll also find a FAQ page with some additional insights into this decision and what it means.

Customers looking for an alternative have a few options. As always, you can make use of Ubuntu or Debian. In addition to those distributions there are a few alternatives that aim at keeping a version of CentOS (or a fork of RHEL) maintained:

We are currently investigating the best path forward for Linode and the various CentOS distributions we offer. If there’s anything you’d like to see as a replacement, or if you have any questions, feel free to comment them on this post.

For now, we recommend customers on CentOS 8 begin planning for a migration from CentOS 8 Linux to Stream. While CentOS 7 will continue to be supported until 2024, CentOS 8 will stop receiving support at the end of 2021. At that time only the Stream version will be maintained.

Converting to Stream can be done by running the following commands. We recommend you create a backup before following these steps to ensure you can recover if something unexpected occurs.

The following is from https://www.centos.org/centos-stream/

Converting from CentOS Linux to CentOS Stream
root@centos-linux# dnf install centos-release-stream
root@centos-linux# dnf swap centos-{linux,stream}-repos
root@centos-linux# dnf distro-sync
root@centos-stream# cat /etc/centos-release
CentOS Stream release 8

Would love to see Linode offer out of box OS images for Oracle Linux and eventually Rocky Linux at least :)

Hey @eva2000 - this is great feedback. :)

We've had a couple other requests for both Oracle Linux and Rocky Linux recently, so I added your requests to our internal trackers. I can't promise definite implementation or a timeframe, but I can promise it's something we're at least talking about.

I had requested AlmaLinux and Oracle only because they are both already available albeit, AlmaLinux is in beta. But if people want to migrate soon that would be helpful. Rocky can be added later. It doesn't hurt to have a few options. From a community open source stand point, Almalinux and Rocky might be the best options. Oracle ruined mysql so…lol. Luckily we got mariaDB.

I wanted to provide some additional information on how we plan to handle the switch to CentOS Stream. Linode supports a distribution for up to 6 months following its official end of life. This means we will be removing CentOS 8 as a deployable distribution in 2022 provided its EOL date does not change. CentOS 8 Stream is already available on Linode for those who need it.

Users will be able to deploy CentOS 7 until 2024, provided the EOL date for this does not change. Red Hat has also made a self-supported, free license available for small production deployments. You can learn more about that on their blog.

We're paying close attention to a few alternatives such as Rocky and Oracle Linux, along with Alma Linux. Feel free to add any other suggestions you'd like to see included in our distribution list.

Rocky Linux looks really interesting, and apparently there will be a 1-line command to convert a CentOS 8 installation to Rocky.

Here's an interview with the founder of the project, Gregory Kurtzer. I'm disappointed that Linode isn't mentioned in the question about major cloud providers.


@dsmith, on the topic of Red Hat's developer/small production deployment offering, is there any plan to offer this as an installation option, or, I guess at least having a more streamlined approach to installing it as a custom distro?

@dtucny We don't have any current plans to offer this as an installation options. But we appreciate your feedback and I've added this request to our internal tracker! Any updates we make to our platform will appear on our blog.

@rdaniels I would also like to see a RHEL offering on Linode.

I won't use it in production, but I have just launched a SaaS service that uses an agent that runs on Linux OSes. Having the ability to spin up a RHEL instance to quickly test my agent would be amazing.

Currently I've had to download both RHEL 7 and 8 ISOs and run through the full install on a local VM, which has been very time consuming. Other distros were much easier - just deploy a Linode for a short time while I'm testing, and it's ready within a minute.

Hey @twhite and all - Wanted to let you know Linode now supports AlmaLinux! You can find it in our list of available distributions, and in the Choose a Distribution drop-down in Cloud Manager when you create a Linode.

Cool, thanks for the heads up @wjohnson. Now just have to start testing my build scripts. :)

I was waiting to see if there’d be an update on this, but I don’t see any released info yet. I want to explicitly add my vote for allowing RHEL installs which those of us in the developer program could use for either our testing or the <16 machine production workloads, in line with the RH licensing changes implemented back in February. Would definitely increase my use of Linode machines & the Linode application environment in general, at this point. Thanks!

CentOS Linux 7 will reach end of life on June 30, 2024, the same date that RHEL 7 enters the next vendor support phase: RHEL 7 Extended Lifecycle Support jfi.cam/jiofilocalhtml/ forpc

Quick update for everyone: As of today (6/22/21), Linode now supports Rocky Linux 8 for deployment!!!

For anyone unfamiliar, here's are a couple cool tidbits from Rocky Linux's officiate site that I, for one, am very excited about:

Rocky Linux is led by Gregory Kurtzer, founder of the CentOS project.

Rocky Linux aims to function as a downstream build as CentOS had done previously, building releases after they have been added by the upstream vendor, not before.

I guess Rocky Linux is OK, although the first release of the distribution came on 2021-06-21. Other than being similar to Red Hat and Oracle, what does Rocky distribution offer in regards to integrity and quick availability of security advisories/patches?

Are there any other distributions available in Linode similar to CentOS with some history to compare? (Tried looking into distrowatch.com and Linode and seems Fedora would be the only other option)

@Florez, of our supported distributions, it does sound like Fedora may be the best option for you. That being said, you can install a custom distribution on a Linode and use the one you're most comfortable with. We also have a new Linode Images feature which allows you to upload preconfigured distribution images to new Linodes.

What's the status on Oracle Linux as a supported Linode distro?

Is it compatible with Linode to install CentOS 8 and then run the Oracle conversion script?

If anyone has done this, any issues running on Linode?

I used OL outside of Linode and find it a very reliable and robust option to RHEL/CentOS.

I have a client I manage various Linodes for and they are currently on Centos8. I pester them about this regularly, but I am not able to perform a change of OS without their consent. Unfortunately, they are very slow moving and it could be months before I get the go ahead. So I would like to ask, what are the ramifications of not changing the OS? Is it simply a case of not receiving updates? Or will Centos8 boxes be automatically migrated? Or will they be disabled?

Just trying to gather as much information as I can to help the client make their decision.

Is it possible to add EuroLinux (ISOs) as an alternative to CentOS/RHEL?

EuroLinux is an Enterprise-class server operating system created in Poland, but its known almost worldwide.
It has fully compatible migration scripts for CentOS, RHEL, Oracle Linux and other CentOS-like distributions.

Here is a table comparing EuroLinux with other systems.

Thanks for sharing this information. Really great post.


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