[ic] OT: Alternatives to Red Hat

Jack Gates jlgates at morningstarwebservices.net
Tue Nov 4 17:23:15 EST 2003

> Dear all -
> I apologize if this is a bit off-topic, but I think that this is a good
> forum for this issue. As many of you probably know, Red Hat is undergoing
> some strategic changes which will result in the near-term demise
> of Red Hat
> Linux as most of us know it: versions 7.2 - 8.0 will no longer be
> supported
> as of the end of this year; currently-shipping version 9 will no
> longer be
> supported after April of next year. Red Hat will instead focus on their
> Enterprise product, which is no doubt impressive - and has mandatory
> licensing and subscription fees.
> For those of us primarily concerned with building and operating web
> servers, this is a bit much. Red Hats Fedora project might be a
> possibility, but it's unclear what shape that is taking just yet. I would
> appreciate hearing any opinions on the other Linux dist's from those whom
> have had the opportunity to use them for some time, again in the
> context of
> interchange and web server services.
> Thanks in advance for all remarks!
> - Ed LaFrance

The info below are excerpts from several posts to a thread about Redhat in
another mailing list, which I am subscribed to.




The link below will probably wrap breaking it. This article talks about
getting rid of their consumer retail boxed software so they can let the
development side go unrestricted and not be held up by the controlled
releases that have been the norm in the past.




This idea could be an option.


You might consider what I plan on doing...recompiling RHES 3 from SRPMs and
rolling your own "RedHat Advanced Server"

I posted a link to a site where this process is outlined:

And a mailing list for discussions on this and related topics:



> First, RH divests itself of responsibility for the RH distro, handing it
> over to Fedora.  Now, they recommend Windows on the desktop.  Have they
> lost their minds?

No, they haven't.  Their CEO just isn't blind to the unfortunate truth.
Most people do not know SQUAT about running a computer.  Linux is simply
too hard to be a viable desktop alternative at this time.  Yes, I use
Linux on all of my machines (even at work).  I am even a Linux
developer, but Matthew Szulik is correct.  Linux is still quite some
ways away from being a Windows replacement.  Take into consideration
that most computer users are not very proficient at it.  To them,
Windows is too complex for their tastes.  Imagine explaining to them
that to burn a CD, they need to make sure they have the proper
permissions on the device files, that they load the proper kernel
module, that they configure their software do point to the right SCSI
device designation (or ATAPI:x,y,z, because we all know that is SO much
easier... :smirk:), then they renice the process to keep it from
underunning.  Sure, that is just as easy as "Double click Setup.  Next.
Next.  Next.  Finish.  Double click icon.  Select Burner from list of
actually installed CDROMs.  Select files to burn.  Click burn."

> http://news.zdnet.co.uk/software/linuxunix/0,39020390,39117575,00.htm
> I don't know what the sentiments are with UCLUG members, but I wouldn't
> imagine that this will generate good will for Redhat in the Open Source
> community.  A community that they need to prosper.

They honestly don't need community support.  This is one of the
disadvantages to open source.  After all, SCO seems to be doing just
fine shipping Apache and Samba with OpenServer, though they're the
biggest slime of them all.

> Debian is looking better and better (I've never tried it...yet).

...because Debian has awesome enterprise-level support and certification
programs... :rolleyes:

I'm just saying that you have to
realize that Red Hat is a publicly traded business whose purpose is to
make money.  Their "consumer" distribution was their biggest resource
hog, yet produced the least amount of benefit.  By getting rid of that
enormous support overhead, they can focus on their core products which
produce money for them.

I see it as a strong business decision.


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