Novohit switches to RL8 since CentOS 8 anticipated EOL

Novohit switches to RL8 since CentOS 8 anticipated EOL

The news: Red Hat anticipated CentOS 8 EOL

Earlier this year, CentOS published an anticipated end of life for CentOS 8, from the original date 2029 to December 2021. This was an unusual decision, extremely uncommon in the Enterprise-grade Open Source Software realm.

The shift in strategy for CentOS means that whereas previously CentOS existed as a downstream build of its upstream vendor (it receives patches and updates after the upstream vendor does), it will be shifting to an upstream build (testing patches and updates before inclusion in the upstream vendor).

Additionally, support for CentOS Linux 8 has been cut short, from May 31, 2029 to December 31, 2021.

How does this affect Novohit

In short: not much, we already have a plan in place and below you will find next steps depending on how Novohit is deployed in your organization (cloud vs. on premises).

If you only want to see the solution and do not care for the details, feel free to jump to the Solution section.

Software Architecture Details


Novohit is a Web based system running on PHP, Java and PostgreSQL. All these three technologies are independent of the underlying operating system.

Nevertheless, since 2005, we decided to deploy Novohit on RHEL’s CentOS as the de facto Enterprise Level Linux Operating System for its stability and long term support.

Novohit started with CentOS 5 and later migrated to CentOS 6 in the 2010s.

In February 2021, we started the migration campaign to CentOS 8, since CentOS 6 had reached EOL and security updates. By April we had migrated all of our Cloud customers to CentOS 8 and we set a plan through 2021 to assist our On Premises Customers to migrate to a new compatible server or move to the cloud.

By August 2021, the Open Source community established concrete, enterprise-grade Linux Operating Systems alternatives, and although it could’ve be expected from CentOS 8 to reverse their decision, they did not, so our technology team analyzed the Open Source alternatives and made a decision based on the same factors we based our decision for CentOS back in 2005: enterprise-grade, long term stability and security and efficiency.

Contesting Alternatives

We narrowed it down to two, RHEL-based options

Option 1: Alma Linux by Cloud Linux: Enterprise grade Linux supported by Leaders in Cloud Tech like Microsoft and Amazon.

Option 2: Rocky Linux: enterprise-grade, production-ready Linux supported by Leaders in Cloud Tech like Google, Microsoft, Amazon and DigitalOcean.

Other derivatives have been ignored for lack of support towards Enterprise-grade.

Our decision: Rocky Linux or RL8

After close and thorough analysis, we chose Rocky Linux 8, or RL8 for these reasons:

Why did we not choose Red Hat or Oracle Linux?

Technically-wise, we have no objections. But we have chosen not to implement them for the same efficiency reasons that have driven optimal Novohit pricing since our UNIX origins. RHEL or Oracle requiere involvement of additional vendors, licensing, support contracts and additional administrative costs that would drive prices up without technical justifications.

Why not any other Linux?

Novohit is OS and Server Layer agnostic. But to be able to deliver economies of scale in our SBUM SLA, we have very specific processes already in place for support, backups, updates and monitoring that are tightly tied to this specific branch of Linux (Enterprise-based).

These efficiencies translate to lower costs to you.

Solution: how to migrate to RL8

For Cloud Customers

If you are operating Novohit in the cloud, don’t worry, we will handle the migration to RL8 before 2022. This will imply no cost to you and will be virtually transparent.

For On Premises Customers already migrated to CentOS 8

If you are operating Novohit On Premises and have already migrated to CentOS 8, don’t worry, we will migrate from CentOS 8 to RL8 free of charge, and it will be virtually transparent.

We have already started to reach out to our customers to schedule the migration.

The migration is safe, free and guaranteed for customers who had already migrated to CentOS 8 .

For On Premises Customers with CentOS 6

If you have not yet migrated to CentOS 8, you don’t need to worry. RL8 is compatible with our compatible server list, so if you have already purchased the server or are about to, we will install RL8 instead of CentOS 8 at the same pricing.

2022 Roadmap

We strongly recommend to all customers that still have CentOS 6 to migrate to RL 8 before 2022.

From 2022 onwards Novohit upgrades may be limited if you do not migrate to CentOS 8.

We understand these are complex times, this is why our Admin department will provide all financial assistance for you to keep your technology up to date.