If you are planning to upgrade to CentOS 8 from CentOS 7, you may need to skip it for now, because CentOS 8 is going away! If you are already using it, you should consider to migrate to CentOS Stream 8 from CentOS Linux 8.
CentOS (short for Community ENTerprise Operating System ) is the clone of Red Hat Enterprise Linux system (RHEL). CentOS is widely known for its stability and reliability and It is the popular choice for many web hosting providers. Also, it is the gateway for the people who wants to learn RHEL at free of cost. Well, the show is over. The CentOS developers have announced that they are shifting their focus to CentOS Stream.
According to the official announcement, CentOS Linux 8, as a rebuild of RHEL 8, will end at the end of 2021. CentOS Stream continues after that date, serving as the upstream (development) branch of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. In other words, CentOS Stream is going to be a rolling pre-release (i.e. beta) model.
So CentOS Stream won't anymore be a downstream rebuild of the RHEL release. It is now a midstream that will live in-between Fedora and RHEL. To put this in layman terms, it is not anymore Fedora -> RHEL -> CentOS but Fedora -> CentOS -> RHEL. Starting from January 2022, RHEL is going to be based on CentOS not the other way around.
You still can use CentOS 8 and send patches as well until December 31, 2021. But CentOS 8 will be ended early around this time next year, and there will be no CentOS 9. The CentOS Linux 7 users need not to panic. CentOS 7 will continue through the end of its life in 2024.
While going through the comments in CentOS blog, I noticed that Mr.Gregory Kurtzer, the original founder of CentOS, has left a comment. He says that he is planning to create another rebuild of RHEL. Good news indeed!
Now let us go ahead and migrate CentOS Linux 8 to CentOS Stream 8. It is not that difficult.
Migrate To CentOS Stream 8 From CentOS Linux 8
First of all, backup your important data, just in case.
Update CentOS 8 to latest available version using command:
$ sudo dnf update
After updating the system, reboot it. Check the current CentOS 8 version using command:
$ cat /etc/redhat-release CentOS Linux release 8.3.2011
Next, enable CentOS Stream repository using command:
$ sudo dnf install centos-release-stream
Last metadata expiration check: 0:35:27 ago on Wednesday 09 December 2020 12:44:07 PM IST. Dependencies resolved. ========================================================================= Package Arch Version Repo Size ========================================================================= Installing: centos-release-stream x86_64 8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8 extras 11 k Transaction Summary ========================================================================= Install 1 Package Total download size: 11 k Installed size: 6.6 k Is this ok [y/N]: y Downloading Packages: centos-release-stream-8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8 17 kB/s | 11 kB 00:00 ------------------------------------------------------------------------- Total 5.9 kB/s | 11 kB 00:01 Running transaction check Transaction check succeeded. Running transaction test Transaction test succeeded. Running transaction Preparing : 1/1 Installing : centos-release-stream-8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8.x86_ 1/1 Verifying : centos-release-stream-8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8.x86_ 1/1 Installed: centos-release-stream-8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8.x86_64 Complete!
Finally, run the following command to migrate CentOS Linux 8 to CentOS Stream 8:
$ sudo dnf distro-sync
distro-sync command will do the necessary upgrades, downgrades or keeps selected installed packages to match the latest version available from any enabled repository. If no package is given, all installed packages are considered. Type
Y and hit
ENTER to start migrating to CentOS Stream 8:
CentOS-Stream - AppStream 521 kB/s | 6.3 MB 00:12 CentOS-Stream - Base 304 kB/s | 2.3 MB 00:07 CentOS-Stream - Extras 5.1 kB/s | 7.0 kB 00:01 Last metadata expiration check: 0:00:01 ago on Wednesday 09 December 2020 01:22:28 PM IST. Dependencies resolved. ======================================================================================================================================== Package Architecture Version Repository Size ======================================================================================================================================== Installing: centos-stream-release noarch 8.4-1.el8 Stream-BaseOS 21 k replacing centos-linux-release.noarch 8.3-1.2011.el8 replacing centos-release-stream.x86_64 8.1-1.1911.0.7.el8 Upgrading: NetworkManager x86_64 1:1.30.0-0.2.el8 Stream-BaseOS 2.5 M NetworkManager-libnm x86_64 1:1.30.0-0.2.el8 Stream-BaseOS 1.8 M NetworkManager-team x86_64 1:1.30.0-0.2.el8 Stream-BaseOS 142 k NetworkManager-tui x86_64 1:1.30.0-0.2.el8 Stream-BaseOS 322 k avahi-glib x86_64 0.7-20.el8 Stream-BaseOS 14 k avahi-libs x86_64 0.7-20.el8 Stream-BaseOS 62 k bind-export-libs x86_64 32:9.11.20-6.el8 . . . . baseos 57 k python3-subscription-manager-rhsm x86_64 1.28.5-1.el8 Stream-BaseOS 362 k subscription-manager x86_64 1.28.5-1.el8 Stream-BaseOS 1.1 M subscription-manager-rhsm-certificates x86_64 1.28.5-1.el8 Stream-BaseOS 258 k usermode x86_64 1.113-1.el8 baseos 202 k Transaction Summary ======================================================================================================================================== Install 9 Packages Upgrade 107 Packages Total download size: 205 M Is this ok [y/N]: y
This will take a while depending on your Internet speed. Once the CentOS Stream 8 migration is completed, run the following command to verify:
$ cat /etc/redhat-release CentOS Stream release 8
If you want a fresh CentOS Stream ISO, you can get it from the official page.
CentOS users are not happy and are against this decision
A lot of CentOS Linux users and developers are disappointed about this decision. Many frustrated users have commented that they were expecting this since IBM bought out Red Hat.
Also so many users are thinking to move to different distributions that provides long term support. The most suggested alternatives by the users are FreeBSD, Debian, openSUSE and Ubuntu.
We don't know how Red Hat is going to respond to the users' agitation. May be they will simply ignore the CentOS community and move on. Let us wait and see.
Don't want to switch to CentOS Stream? How about Oracle Linux? The following guide explains how to convert to Oracle Linux from CentOS.