Tuesday, May 21, 2024

5 Finest CentOS Alternative Choices for 2023

CentOS Linux 7, the favored free and open-source Linux distribution primarily based on Pink Hat Enterprise Linux, has set its finish of life for June 2024. The enterprise working system, beloved by scientists, companies and builders for its reliability, stability and safety, has been a number one know-how for internet hosting, cloud computing, storage servers, networks and software program growth.

As customers take into account whether or not emigrate to CentOS Stream 9, a brand new upstream distribution that’s designed to be a rolling launch of Pink Hat Enterprise Linux and isn’t thought-about a alternative for CentOS, different opponents stand out nearly as good options.

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High CentOS options: Comparability desk

Within the following chart, we be aware how 5 CentOS options examine when it comes to efficiency, migration instruments and sources, safety and compliance, supported architectures, help and lifecycle, and pricing.

Efficiency Migration instruments and sources Safety and compliance Supported architectures Assist and lifecycle Pricing
Pink Hat Enterprise Linux Extremely dependable and strong. Sure. Sure, built-in and automatic instruments. x86, ARM, IBM Energy, IBM Z, IBM LinuxONE and extra.

24-7 help is free with the paid plan. 

10-year lifecycle.

Improve extensions accessible.

Pricing begins at $179.
Oracle Linux Superior efficiency and reliability. Sure. Sure, built-in instruments. x86 (32-bit), x86-64 (64-bit) and aarch64 (64-bit).

24-7 help should be bought.

10-year lifecycle.

Improve extension accessible.

Free to obtain, use and distribute. 

Paid variations embrace Oracle Linux help, Oracle Cloud and Oracle.

Rocky Linux Dependable however underneath intense growth. Sure, however requires superior data. Sure, however requires superior data. x86-64-v2, ARM64, ppc64le and s390x.

Group help and industrial help accessible.

10-year help and improve cycle.

Free to obtain, use and distribute.
AlmaLinux Enterprise-grade however underneath growth. Sure, however requires superior data. Sure, however requires superior data. x86_64, aarch64, ppc64le and s390x.

Free group help.

Upgrades and year-support lifecycle fluctuate relying on variations.

Free to obtain, use and distribute.
Fedora Enterprise- grade, dependable and safe. Sure, built-in superior options. Sure, built-in, superior options. x86-64, ARM, PowerPC: PowerPC64 and PowerPC64le, s390x and RISC-V: F.

Boards, paperwork, bug applications, mailing lists and chat help. 

Helps improve from one model to the subsequent.

Free to obtain, use and distribute.

Featured Companions

What are the perfect CentOS options?

Because the IBM-owned firm determined to limit the free use of Pink Hat Enterprise Linux, a divide has been rising amongst customers. The primary query is whether or not emigrate to industrial Linux suppliers or open-source, non-commercial community-developed enterprise working methods.

On this complicated panorama of imminent migration, some prime names stand out as CentOS’s prime options: Pink Hat Enterprise Linux, Oracle Linux, Rocky Linux, AlmaLinux and Fedora.

Pink Hat Enterprise Linux: Finest for giant enterprises

Red Hat Enterprise Linux logo.
Picture: Pink Hat

The primary identify that emerges as a substitute for CentOS is of course Pink Hat Enterprise Linux, because it’s the open-source working system on which CentOS is predicated. Due to this fact, many customers assume that going on to the supply is of course a good suggestion, they usually’re not improper.

RHEL has gained its status amongst huge enterprises for offering a contemporary, security-oriented OS. Firms with superior digital sources, know-how stacks and workloads use the OS to scale and carry out on-premises, on digital machines or containers and within the cloud. The OS is licensed on lots of of clouds and with hundreds of {hardware} and software program distributors.

Determine A

Red Hat Enterprise Linux migration process for CentOS. Image: Red Hat 
Pink Hat Enterprise Linux migration course of for CentOS. Picture: Pink Hat


  • Stability and group help: RHEL is a really secure OS designed for use in mission-critical environments. There’s additionally a big and lively group of RHEL customers and builders to supply help.
  • Safety: Safety is on the core of RHEL. The system consists of a large number of superior safety features.
  • Official help and advantages: Pink Hat supplies 24/7 help for RHEL, and all variations have a 10-year life cycle. Plus, Pink Hat connects customers with its intensive {hardware}, software program and cloud accomplice ecosystem.
  • Supported architectures: It runs on servers and workstations, and helps a variety of {hardware} architectures like x86, ARM, IBM Energy, IBM Z and IBM LinuxONE.
  • Automation and administration: The OS consists of Pink Hat Insights, a managed service for analytics and remediation that delivers steady vulnerability alerts and steerage.
  • Safety and compliance: RHEL can simplify dangers and automate safety and compliance with built-in options like stay kernel patching, safety profiles, safety requirements certification and a trusted software program provide chain.
  • Migration: From putting in to migrating or updating, the seller provides instruments to streamline the processes, whether or not customers are coming from CentOS Linux or one other OS.


  • Secure and dependable software program.
  • Excessive-performing safety and compliance.
  • Nicely-supported OS.
  • Big selection of options.
  • Giant and lively group.


  • Not free; industrial pricing could be costly for small firms.
  • May be complicated to handle.
  • Not as versatile as another Linux distributions.


RHEL variants embrace the Server version and RHEL Workstations, that are optimized to run on high-performance workstations. Moreover, different variations are Linux for Digital Datacenters, Linux for IBM Energy Little Endian and Linux for SAP Options.

Pricing begins at $179 for the Workstation, and the costliest answer, Linux Digital Datacenters, begins at $2,499.

SEE: For extra info, learn Pink Hat Enterprise Linux 9

Oracle Linux: Finest for IT and software program growth firms

Oracle Linux logo.
Picture: Oracle

Oracle Linux is one other stable various for these seeking to migrate from CentOS for a number of causes. Initially, Oracle Linux is 100% Pink Hat Enterprise Linux appropriate. It will probably deal with all kinds of workloads, heavy-duty databases, utility servers and DevOps. Moreover, customers can migrate from CentOS to Oracle Linux seamlessly utilizing built-in migration options. And, they are going to profit from a number of options that aren’t accessible in CentOS.

Totally appropriate with RHEL, Oracle provides a alternative of two kernels: the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel for Oracle Linux or the Pink Hat Suitable Kernel.

  • The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel supplies the most recent open supply improvements, key optimizations and safety with a concentrate on efficiency, stability and minimal backports by monitoring the mainline supply code as carefully as is sensible. It’s a Linux kernel constructed by Oracle and supported by Oracle Linux help. UEK is designed for max efficiency and stability and drives Oracle Cloud and Oracle Engineered Programs, equivalent to Oracle Exadata Database Machine. UEK is well-tested and used to run Oracle’s Engineered Programs, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and huge enterprise deployments for Oracle clients.
  • The Pink Hat Suitable Kernel is for Oracle Linux, and it’s appropriate with the Pink Hat Enterprise Linux kernel; which means that software program that’s compiled for RHEL will even run on Oracle Linux with RHCK.

Oracle Linux is an effective alternative for companies and organizations that want a secure, dependable and safe working system. It’s also standard amongst IT and software program firms due to the options listed beneath.

Determine B

Oracle Linux User interface that shows storage management and disk partition operation.
Oracle Linux Person interface that exhibits storage administration and disk partition operation. Picture: Oracle


  • Migration: Oracle supplies a fast and straightforward migration path to modify from CentOS Linux or different OS. The corporate additionally provides hands-on labs and tutorials to assist customers all through the method.
  • DevOps automation: IT firms and software program builders leverage the automated DevOps options to speed up manufacturing and deployment. By way of these options, Constellation Analysis customers can discover 5 drivers for DevOps automation, suggestions and extra.
  • Multi-environment efficiency and reliability: Oracle Linux is designed to help x86 and Arm architectures throughout on-premises, multicloud and edge environments. It’s also engineered for heavy workloads.
  • Safety and compliance: Customers can apply safety vulnerability fixes with out downtime. Oracle Linux might help customers detect exploits and use a distribution that has FIPS and Widespread Standards certifications to fulfill compliance.
  • Official help: Oracle Linux help should be bought. The value for the 24/7 help begins at $499 per 12 months.

Further options that aren’t accessible in CentOS embrace:

  • Zero-downtime patching with Ksplice.
  • Cloud-native instruments equivalent to Kubernetes and Kata Containers.
  • Kernel-based digital machine virtualization and oVirt-based virtualization supervisor.
  • Gluster Storage for Oracle Linux.
  • The Btrfs file system (solely accessible with UEK).
  • DTrace dynamic tracing framework (solely accessible with UEK).
  • Oracle Linux Automation Supervisor and Automation Engine.
  • Oracle Linux Supervisor utility to help in patching and errata administration.


  • Provides free obtain, use and distribution.
  • Boasts high-performance, stability, safety and reliability.
  • Offers automation for DevOps.
  • Delivers excellent help.
  • Provides a variety of options that CentOS doesn’t.
  • Features a 100% RHEL appropriate migration path for CentOS and different OS customers.


  • Assist should be bought.
  • May be complicated to handle.
  • Compliance options require superior data.


Oracle Linux primary model is free to obtain, use and distribute; this consists of free supply code and updates. The Oracle Cloud Infrastructure pricing could be estimated on-line and the Linux Assist plan pricing is accessible upon request.

SEE: Is Oracle Linux a legitimate alternative for CentOS? (TechRepublic)

Rocky Linux: Finest for die-hard CentOS followers

Rocky Linux.
Picture: Rocky Linux

Rocky Linux is a community-supported Linux distribution that was created when CentOS introduced its end-of-life cycle. The undertaking is led by the unique founding father of CentOS, Gregory Kurtzer.

The OS is designed to be a drop-in alternative for CentOS. It responds to the wants of the CentOS group and has obtained help from Amazon Internet Providers, Google Cloud, VMware, Open Supply Lab and others.

Rocky Linux is an open-source enterprise working system designed to be 100% bug-for-bug appropriate with Pink Hat Enterprise Linux; nevertheless, as it’s underneath intensive growth by the group, it’s not but risk-free.

Determine C 

RockyLinux desktop.
Supply: RockyLinux.


  • Migration: Rocky Linux provides help and guides for customers to make use of when migrating from CentOS, CentOS Stream, Alma Linux, RHEL or Oracle Linux. Superior expertise are required for the migration and what Rocky Linux calls “a mildly risk-taking angle.” A migration script is accessible freed from cost.
  • Manufacturing-ready: Regardless of it nonetheless being underneath growth, the OS is enterprise-ready and supplies stable stability with common updates.
  • Group help: The OS has the help of well-known CentOS leaders, in addition to the broader group.
  • CentOS options: The OS supplies all the principle CentOS options that builders and the group are acquainted with, making the training curve a straight line.

SEE: Be taught to make use of Linux for IT and Sysadmin with this coaching bundle (TechRepublic Academy)


  • Free and open-source.
  • Dependable and safe.
  • Nicely-supported.
  • Wonderful for customers familiarized with CentOS.
  • Supported by the CentOS lively group.


  • Below intense growth.
  • Not risk-free.
  • Requires superior data.


Rocky Linux is free and supplies free upgrades together with a 10-year help lifecycle, all for free of charge.

AlmaLinux: Finest for these acquainted with CentOS

AlmaLinux logo.
Picture: Alma Linux

AlmaLinux is one other forked model of CentOS, owned and ruled by a group of builders. Like RockyLinux, the OS started growth when CentOS introduced it might now not supply help or launch new variations.

The group behind AlmaLinux assures that the OS will all the time be free for enterprises, and that they’re centered on long-term stability and a strong production-grade platform. The corporate adopted a Fedora-like distribution for anybody who doesn’t wish to pay for RHEL licenses. AlmaLinux is supported by CloudLinux Inc. and different sponsors.


  • Migration: AlmaLinux doesn’t have built-in automated step-by-step know-how that guides customers by migration. AlmaLinux does supply guides, however solely these with superior expertise will be capable of observe them (Determine D).
  • Manufacturing-ready: AlmaLinux OS is an enterprise-grade server OS. It’s a secure Linux distribution and provides common releases and help. It’s designed for important workloads. The group supplies official photos for cloud suppliers together with AWS, generic clouds, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, OpenNebula and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.
  • Group help: The AlmaLinux GitHub group accommodates supply code and instruments used to construct AlmaLinux OS and associated infrastructure. The Reddit group is in place for customers to obtain updates and discover and supply help. Moreover, different group boards can be found.
  • Supported architectures: AlmaLinux helps 4 architectures: x86_64, aarch64, ppc64le and s390x.
  • Efficiency and safety: AlmaLinux is a really secure working system that depends on the experience of consultants locally. It’s designed for use in mission-critical environments, and it has an extended historical past of reliability. It additionally supplies a variety of safety features, which embrace SELinux and AppArmor.

Determine D

AlmaLinux CentOS migration process.
Picture: AlmaLinux


  • Open-source and free.
  • Migration help.
  • Excessive-grade enterprise distribution OS.
  • CentOS-style options.
  • Giant group help.


  • New to the market.
  • Not risk-free.
  • Requires superior data.
  • Superior instruments equivalent to automation and compliance might fluctuate and rely upon the extent of consumer experience.


AlmaLinux is free. Upgrades and help supplied fluctuate relying on the model.

Fedora: Finest for programming and rolling launch distribution

Fedora logo.
Picture: Fedora

Fedora is an progressive platform beloved by programmers as a result of it supplies cutting-edge know-how, is dependable and secure, and is a free and open-source OS filled with options.

Fedora can be a community-supported Linux distribution developed by Pink Hat. In idea, it compares extra to CentOS Stream than to CentOS as a result of it provides rolling launch distribution, giving customers entry to the most recent know-how. New options and updates are launched on a steady foundation. The brand new options in Fedora can be found earlier than they’re launched in Pink Hat Enterprise Linux. Fedora additionally invests closely in graphic consumer expertise and supplies easy-to-use, high-quality graphics by fashionable desktops (Determine E).

Determine E

Fedora Desktop Linux user interface.
Picture: Fedora


  • Variations: Fedora is accessible in Workstation and Server variations in addition to for IoT, Cloud and as a Container optimized OS. Every model is up to date for about 13 months; upgrades between variations are fast and straightforward.
  • Efficiency: With Fedora Server, customers can run digital machines and containers, construct functions, deploy a server and workloads, and create secure ecosystems.
  • Assist: Offers problem monitoring, chat help, sources, documentation, group help and extra.
  • Rolling releases: Fedora is a rolling launch distribution, which implies new options and updates are launched on a steady foundation. Customers have entry to the most recent software program accessible.
  • Supported architectures: x86-64, ARM, PowerPC: PowerPC64 and PowerPC64le, s390x and RISC-V: F.


  • Free and open supply.
  • Constructed-in migration instruments and sources.
  • Chopping-edge working system, provides rolling releases.
  • Group supported.


  • Superior expertise are required.
  • Setup could be complicated.


Fedora is free and supplies free upgrades from model to model.

Is CentOS nonetheless related?

CentOS continues to be a related Linux distribution regardless of it being on the countdown for its finish of life. You could possibly consider CentOS as an excellent automotive that the producer is now not producing. Whilst you can nonetheless use the automotive and it really works completely, you’ll not obtain upgrades, new variations or help. Within the close to future, it’s anticipated to turn out to be outdated.

Will there be a CentOS 9?

No, there won’t be a CentOS 9. Pink Hat introduced it might now not help CentOS as a downstream distribution of RHEL. This implies there might be no new variations of CentOS launched after CentOS 8.

Nevertheless, led by a big group and supported by industrial companions, forks of CentOS equivalent to Rocky Linus and AlmaLinux are being developed. These forks are designed to be 100% appropriate with CentOS, to allow them to be used as a drop-in alternative for CentOS.

Is CentOS good in 2023?

Whereas CentOS in 2023 continues to be a great choice, builders and companies are already trying into migrating to different options.

Having mentioned that, CentOS continues to be secure, dependable and appropriate with a variety of software program in 2023. It’s also nonetheless free and open-source, and has the help of an lively group of customers and builders. Nevertheless, as a result of finish of CentOS as we all know it, it might not be your best option for everybody in 2023 and past.

What’s the way forward for CentOS?

Whereas the way forward for CentOS is unsure, the almost definitely situation is that one of many organizations creating forks of it turns into the go-to OS for this group by mid-2024 when it reaches its finish of life.

On the opposite aspect, from Pink Hat’s perspective, the way forward for CentOS is CentOS Stream, which is a brand new Linux distribution developed by Pink Hat, an IBM-owned firm. However CentOS Stream is just not a alternative for CentOS — it’s a totally different distribution with a totally totally different focus. It goals to be on the forefront of growth by providing customers rolling launch distribution to check new options and updates earlier than they’re launched in RHEL. On this means, it’s much like Fedora; additionally, each are developed by Pink Hat, and each supply rolling releases.

How do I select the perfect CentOS various for my enterprise?

There isn’t a simple reply to this query. When selecting an alternate for CentOS, enterprise leaders ought to seek the advice of with their builders to study which OS they really feel extra snug with as a result of they would be the ones working the system.

Alternatively, funds could also be a deciding issue, particularly for small firms. Moreover, amongst CentOS customers and builders, there’s a sturdy sense of group, help and respect free of charge open-source initiatives. Due to this fact, even when an organization has the funds to purchase the costliest licenses, builders might really feel extra assured and comfy working with open-source, free know-how.

Some customers may even see the tip of lifetime of CentOS as a chance emigrate to a different OS equivalent to Oracle Linux or Pink Hat Enterprise Linux. These extra conservative decisions supply options that CentOS doesn’t supply.

In the long run, the OS you select should align with what you are promoting wants and objectives, be versatile, dependable and safe, and supply glorious migration and help. Scaling, automation, upgrades and compliance are additionally key parts to research.


CentOS has supplied very important providers for organizations, firms and builders for a few years. Whereas the OS faces the inevitable finish of its glory days, there are nonetheless stable new and established Linux OS distributions out there.

From CentOS-inspired group OSs like Rocky Linux or AlmaLinux, to a cutting-edge OS like Fedora, or the large names of Oracle and Pink Hat Linux, the choices are as various as they’re wealthy. It will likely be as much as each enterprise to determine which Linux distribution suits their operational wants.


To jot down our evaluate and consider CentOS opponents and options, we examined websites that compile mixture information primarily based on verified consumer evaluations. We additionally reviewed demos on vendor websites, test-drove the software program when attainable and scoured by the official websites of all OS suppliers’ options on this report to guage their software program, customer support, user-friendliness, worth, scalability and extra.

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