Do not destroy CentOS by using it as a RHEL upstream

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In 2014, CentOS was acquired by Red Hat. This concerned many in the community, as Red Hat, the creators of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), are a large for-profit organization. CentOS is an open source, free and complete Linux distribution based off the stable branch of RHEL. CentOS powers almost 19% of all Linux web servers globally.

Red Hat and CentOS both assured the public, the distribution (CentOS) would maintain its place in the community. They didn't keep their word. They've made an announcement that next year, CentOS 8 and future CentOS versions will be migrated to "CentOS Stream". CentOS stream is an upstream "testing" branch for Red Hat Enterprise Linux. (So is Fedora Linux - Why have two?) By making CentOS a test distribution, it completely destroys its usefulness as the stable, free, enterprise ready operating system for which it has been cherished by millions over the last 16 years.

This move seems like a strategy by Red Hat to convince people that want a stable, enterprise operating system to be forced to migrate to their prohibitively expensive, for-profit OS.

We ask you, CentOS governing board, please continue the regular development of CentOS as a stable, downstream of RHEL with standard versioning. By all means, continue CentOS stream separately, but please don't destroy the CentOS we know and have loved for the last 16 years.

 

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