Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Fedora Releases LifeCycle

I think you know Fedora has a fast release life cycle, many of Linux users take it negative, but believe me its *NOT*, when we take in-depth look of release life cycle, you will definitely like the way Fedora approach towards its release...lets start...we have two options:

1. Release a stable distro with longer life cycle.

This option is good & attract people who d'nt want to upgrade quickly to new version of distro, mostly people like Data Centers/Server Rooms Admins wants such kind of OS, now it suites them because they d'nt want to troubleshoot their hosted application compatibility with new version OS. I 100% agree with this school of thought *BUT* they will lack the new version features in their OS, with keeping old kernel version, sometime drivers unavailability/compatibility with new adopted hardware etc. So you keep a stable pretty old Kernel with old packages at a price of giving up new features & hardware compatibility...

The distribution comes under this scenario are, e.g. RHEL, Centos, Solaris etc...

2. Release a stable/unstable/development distro with shorter life cycle.

Getting a bleeding edge new version distro with stable *sometime* unstable & development, give you a hint of instability but you get all latest kernel & packages you can get. You get ride of the hardware compatibility problem, because day-by-day the Linux distribution are adding more & more drivers in their distributions....people like Developers & Researchers even *End Users* they wants to have a latest kernel with all brand new packages...

The distribution comes under this scenario are e.g. Fedora, Ubuntu etc...


Now going back to Fedora Releases LifeCycle:

The Fedora Project is committed to producing a new version approximately every 6 months, with each new release having a lifespan of approximately 13 months. This makes sense as if you wants to skip a release upgrade you can..., for example, right now i am using Fedora 8 on my notebook, this installation has been optimize too much & I am not fully prepared to move new Fedora 9, thats the reason I have decided to move directly to Fedora 10 at my notebook, while I will keep using Fedora 9 on my virtual-machine...

In Addition, this 13 month life Cycle means I will get Patch & Updates till I get Fedora 10 release, yeah could you imagine Fedora is taking care of your OS installation till you get two next releases...btw, 13 months is too much in current fast developing OS world, if you stay more out of upgrades you are left behind & it will cost *efforts* a lot to upgrade.

Cool ! i hope you now understand Fedora is subjected to what kind of audience, they d'nt limit fedora being used in Data Center *Production Environment* but yeah its not the best practice, while this bleeding edge Fedora release cycle end up with fairly stable RHEL/CentOS release.

Summary: If you are planning to use all brand new kernel & packages d'nt feel any kind of fear against using Fedora, they take you through a smooth, well acceptable OS life Cycle...

PS: you can always check Fedora's official annoucements for LifeCycle.

Cheers

1 comment:

Jason said...

Thanks for the article. I found it interesting.