[CentOS] CentOS 8 future

Wed Dec 16 01:04:20 UTC 2020
Phelps, Matthew <mphelps at cfa.harvard.edu>

On Tue, Dec 15, 2020 at 7:41 PM Johnny Hughes <johnny at centos.org> wrote:

> On 12/15/20 6:12 PM, Joshua Kramer wrote:
> >> I don't think there will be a course change either, but for different
> >> reasons. The motivation isn't "cashing/selling out". It's... actually
> the
> >> stated motivation
> >> https://www.redhat.com/en/blog/faq-centos-stream-updates#Q2
> >
> > First, I will note that I think the idea of creating *a version of*
> > CentOS that is called "Stream", with the intent that it leads RHEL by
> > a bit, is a GREAT idea, for exactly the stated reasons!
> >
> > There's one problem I have with this asserted motivation.  Stream is
> > not being done as *a version of* CentOS.  It is being done as *THE*
> > CentOS, which means you're discontinuing point releases.  As far as
> > "maintaining CentOS point releases to follow RHEL"- this is what is
> > being discontinued.  How much money, in developer time and other
> > incidentals, does this cost RedHat per year?  Of course this is a
> > proprietary number.  But let's imagine that this number is $250k per
> > year.  Out of what was it, about $433M of profit (2019)?  So it would
> > cost RedHat 0.06% of profit to hire more developers to keep issuing
> > CentOS point releases.
> >
> > What does RedHat "buy" in return for spending 0.06% of its profit on
> > maintaining point releases?
> > -Community trust and goodwill.  Those members of the community that
> > cannot afford RedHat licenses for whatever reason still know that the
> > #1 player in the Linux marketplace still has their back.  Then when
> > those folks move on to enterprises that can afford RH licensing (and
> > in some cases demand it), will select RedHat because of this trust and
> > goodwill.  They will be highly likely to recommend other RedHat
> > products- since it all "works together" and they'll know RHEL (i.e.
> > CentOS) well.  Also note that this trust and goodwill means
> > "convenience", even within enterprises that have a large budget with
> > RedHat.  If I have a project and I want to spin up 100 OS instances
> > just for the heck of it, I can.  I don't need to ask anyone, I don't
> > need to reserve or download any entitlement key files.  I don't need
> > to debug weird problems when entitlement key files don't work.
> > -Control of part of the ecosystem.  Those companies that build their
> > products to run on RHEL (or in RHEL containers) are able to (and
> > encouraged to) certify those products on RHEL because they are able to
> > use CentOS.
> >
> > But more to the point, what does RedHat LOSE by saving 0.06% of its
> > profit?  The damage to community trust and goodwill far exceeds the
> > gains that would be realized if the status quo were kept in place.
> > Yes, it's true that many of the folks who used CentOS would never turn
> > into paying customers.  But due to this situation, you have thousands
> > of system administrators who are actively looking to completely
> > abandon the RedHat ecosystem altogether.  When it comes time to
> > recommend products... they aren't going to recommend RHEL.  They
> > aren't going to recommend JBoss, or Fuse, or 3Scale API management.
> > It's clear that RedHat can't be trusted with some parts of its
> > portfolio, so why should we trust ANY of its products?
> So don't trust them.  Move to something else if you think something is
> better.
> >
> > If it is 100% factually correct that the ONLY motivation for killing
> > point releases is the stated motivation, then it's just a simple
> > matter of finding a spare $250k (or whatever that cost is) from the
> > almost-half-a-billion dollar corporate coin purse.  The return on
> > investment has been, and will continue to be, immeasurable...
> $250K is not even close.  That is one employee, when you also take into
> account unemployment insurance, HR, medical insurance etc.  now multiply
> that by 8.  Now, outfit those 8 employees to work from home .. all over
> the world, different countries, different laws.
>  .. THEN buy 30 machines minimum (servers, not workstations) for
> building and testing, buy a service contract for those 30 machines, host
> the bandwidth required to sync out to 600 worldwide servers.
> We need all the CI machines .. that is a bunch of blade servers for
> that.  They need service contacts too.
> In any event it doesn't matter.  The decision is made. If people don't
> want to use CentOS Stream, then don't.  The decision is not changing.
> _______________________________________________

We won't.

Thanks for all your work in the past. Good luck to you.

And to Red Hat I have one more thing to say:

Buh bye!



*Matt Phelps*

*Information Technology Specialist, Systems Administrator*

(Computation Facility, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory)

Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian

60 Garden Street | MS 39 | Cambridge, MA 02138
email: mphelps at cfa.harvard.edu

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