[CentOS-devel] https://blog.centos.org/2020/12/future-is-centos-stream/

Tue Dec 8 21:54:30 UTC 2020
Lance Albertson <lance at osuosl.org>

On Tue, Dec 8, 2020 at 10:07 AM Rich Bowen <rbowen at redhat.com> wrote:

> On 12/8/20 12:07 PM, Phelps, Matthew wrote:
> >
> > I still haven't seen an answer to the question, "Who made this
> > decision?" and, "How can we lobby to get it changed?"+
> The Board of Directors of the CentOS project voted on this decision.
> You are *currently* lobbying to get it changed.

As the OSUOSL is a big user of CentOS, I'm concerned this change will
result in loss of stability since Stream is effectively like the
development version of CentOS. I think this is great for testing new
features and also getting feedback for upstream, it's troublesome for folks
also wanting a stable release.

To me, I view what CentOS has done up until this point is similar to the
Ubuntu LTS releases where you have a release you know will be the same for
an extended period of time. This change seems as though the "LTS" model of
CentOS is going away and following a model more closer to Fedora and Ubuntu
non-LTS releases. As a sysadmin that concerns me quite a bit since I have a
moving target which may have unintended consequences. I realize the
comparison to Ubuntu's release model is not 1:1 to RHEL/CentOS, so please
forgive me on that.

Ideally, as a user I'd like to have the *option* of using CentOS which
matches RHEL releases OR CentOS Stream. I understand that you likely cannot
do both which is why you voted the way you did based on people resources
and other factors. But as you've seen on this thread, you're alienating a
lot of loyal users by making this change on a short notice (given the
nature of this distribution).

As mentioned on the RH blog:

There are different kinds of CentOS users, and we are working with the
> CentOS Project Governing Board to tailor programs that meet the needs of
> these different user groups. In the first half of 2021, we plan to
> introduce low- or no-cost programs for a variety of use cases, including
> options for open source projects and communities and expansion of the Red
> Hat Enterprise Linux Developer subscription use cases to better serve the
> needs of systems administrators. We’ll share more details as these
> initiatives coalesce.

While this option may work for users such as me, I doubt it will work for
the vast majority of users.

Matt described this a little better via his comment on LWN [1]:

There was an internal presentation featuring a "layer cake" model which I
> really liked, which went something like this:
> Blue: Community space | Fedora Linux | community engineering decisions |
> community support
> Purple: Shared space | CentOS Stream | transparent Red Hat engineering
> decisions with community input | community support
> Red: Product | Red Hat Enterprise Linux | Red Hat engineering decisions
> with customer input | product support
> Now, "Red Hat engineering decisions" might seem a bit scary, but consider
> that in CentOS Linux, all of the distro-contents engineering decisions were
> also made by Red Hat, but inside without any transparency. And if you're
> unsure about community engineering decisions and Fedora's independence …
> buy me a beverage sometime and ask me about Btrfs!

As a current user of CentOS, I'd like it to also fall in the "Red" column.

Also, please forgive me if I have misunderstood or got some of this wrong
but this is my perspective based on what I've read thus far.


[1] https://lwn.net/Articles/839341/

Lance Albertson
Oregon State University | Open Source Lab
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