RealTime IT News

End of The Line For Red Hat Linux 9

Red Hat's retail Linux line, Red Hat Linux 9, is at the end of its line. The Raleigh, N.C.-based Linux vendor is ending support on its final version on April 30th.

Red Hat made the original announcement at the end of last year. In January, it ended support for its earlier legacy versions, leaving Red Hat 9 as the most recent version of the now defunct product line -- until now.

Red Hat is hoping Red Hat 9 customers will now migrate to its Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) line.

"When we first announced the program, we had a big up tick then. But since then, it's been very steady," Red Hat spokesperson Leigh Day told internetnews.com.

"We've had a pretty good success rate with people moving over," she added.

Red Hat has urged businesses that require support and longer release cycles to migrate to RHEL; for those that don't need as much support, there is the community-based Fedora Project. The Fedora Project is now in the final testing stages of its Fedora Core 2 release, after it released test 3 this week.

Fedora Core 2 includes a number significant improvements, including the 2.6 Linux kernel and SELinux security enhancements.

In related news, Red Hat said Enterprise Linux has achieved Evaluation Assurance Level 2 (EAL2) certification for its RHEL 3 product.

Day said the company would be pursuing further EAL certification with the help of IBM for the RHEL 4 release coming in 2005.

For those wishing to continue running Red Hat Linux 9 with some measure of support, two options remain.

One is a commercial service, called the commercial Progeny Transition Service, which offers paid support for Legacy Red Hat users facing end-of-life of Red Hat Linux 9.

The other is community alternative Fedora Legacy Project, which, so far, is apparently keeping pace with demand to support legacy versions of Red Hat.

"We've taken some good steps to support the larger user base," Fedora Legacy Project Leader Jesse Keating told internetnews.com. "New hardware has been procured and a new datacenter has stepped up to host the new master server."

According to Keating, the Fedora Legacy homepage registered over 10,000 unique visitors in April.

However, Fedora Legacy volunteer Seth Vidal said he doesn't think the full demand for support on Red Hat Linux 9 has yet to be felt.

"I think it takes a few weeks for people to really [absorb] that Red Hat won't be sending them updates anymore," Vidal told internetnews.com. "I know I've got a number of Red Hat Linux 9 machines here that I intend to continue supporting for a while."

"We've got bandwidth and we have people with necessity. I think that normally turns up some good results. We'll see."