CentOS Stream^W^W Red Hat Enterprise Linux 9 emerges in beta form

We're on a highway to RHEL


IBM tentacle Red Hat on Wednesday unveiled the beta for version nine of its eponymous Enterprise Linux product, now built from CentOS Stream.

This version is due for official release in 2022. Its predecessor debuted in 2019, the year IBM closed the deal to acquire the Linux distro, and it right now stands at version 8.4, which was released in May 2021.

Red Hat's Gil Cattelain and Joe Brockmeier said: "RHEL 9 Beta is something of a departure from previous major releases of RHEL."

Hmm, what might that be? "While it contains many improvements and enhancements customers have asked for, it has fewer changes that require admins and IT Ops to learn new ways of doing things."

In other words, while there are plenty of new bits and pieces in the distribution, there shouldn't be enough to scare away RHEL 8 administrators and users.

Four hardware architectures are supported in version nine: the Intel/AMD x86_64, Arm's aarch64, and IBM's ppc64le and s390x. It uses the upstream 5.14 Linux kernel, which brings with it a wealth of tweaks and updates since the 4.18 kernel of RHEL 8.

In terms of new toys, live patching of the kernel is possible via the web console, and security has been shored up, with built-in utilities recompiled for OpenSSL 3, various enhancements, and finally a disabled-by-default password-based SSH root login, which is hoped to thwart brute-force attacks on superuser accounts.

Other updates include Python 3.9, GCC 11, and up-to-date versions of LLVM, Rust, and Go toolchains.

However, for better or worse, it is CentOS Stream that will mark RHEL 9 out from its predecessors.

Last year, CentOS morphed into CentOS Stream, which was based on a development branch of RHEL and not so useful for production workloads. CentOS, on the other hand, was a robust distribution for users happy to do without Red Hat's support. Much to the anguish of some fans, IBM-Red Hat decided CentOS Linux 8 would be the end of the line for the distro, meaning no CentOS Linux 9 or beyond.

Instead, as promised, CentOS Stream 9 was released this year "as part of the RHEL 9 development process," as Red Hat put it. Essentially, CentOS Stream tracks just ahead of RHEL, like a rolling beta of RHEL, and as such can be used as a glimpse into what the next RHEL release will look like.

Red Hat this week insisted, "We remain committed to our open source development model," adding: "RHEL 9 is a bold step towards Red Hat developing a commercial Linux distribution from CentOS Stream."

You can check it out yourself if you have a Red Hat account. The software house recently dropped the requirement for users to request RHEL Beta access, opening up Red Hat Beta Access subscriptions to all. ®

Similar topics

Narrower topics


Other stories you might like

  • Meg Whitman – former HP and eBay CEO – nominated as US ambassador to Kenya

    Donated $110K to Democrats in recent years

    United States president Joe Biden has announced his intention to nominate former HPE and eBay CEO Meg Whitman as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of Kenya.

    The Biden administration's announcement of the planned nomination reminds us that Whitman has served as CEO of eBay, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, and Quibi. Whitman also serves on the boards of Procter & Gamble, and General Motors.

    The announcement doesn't remind readers that Whitman has form as a Republican politician – she ran for governor of California in 2010, then backed the GOP's Mitt Romney in his 2008 and 2012 bids for the presidency. She later switched political allegiance and backed the presidential campaigns of both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden.

    Continue reading
  • Ex-Qualcomm Snapdragon chief turns CEO at AI chip startup MemryX

    Meet the new boss

    A former executive leading Qualcomm's Snapdragon computing platforms has departed the company to become CEO at an AI chip startup.

    Keith Kressin will lead product commercialization for MemryX, which was founded in 2019 and makes memory-intensive AI chiplets.

    The company is now out of stealth mode and will soon commercially ship its AI chips to non-tech customers. The company was testing early generations of its chips with industries including auto and robotics.

    Continue reading
  • Aircraft can't land safely due to interference with upcoming 5G C-band broadband service

    Expect flight delays and diversions, US Federal Aviation Administation warns

    The new 5G C-band wireless broadband service expected to rollout on 5 January 2022 in the US will disrupt local radio signals and make it difficult for airplanes to land safely in harsh weather conditions, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

    Pilots rely on radio altimeter readings to figure out when and where an aircraft should carry out a series of operations to prepare for touchdown. But the upcoming 5G C-band service beaming from cell towers threatens to interfere with these signals, the FAA warned in two reports.

    Flights may have to be delayed or restricted at certain airports as the new broadband service comes into effect next year. The change could affect some 6,834 airplanes and 1,828 helicopters. The cost to operators is expected to be $580,890.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021