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RHEL8 & EPEL8 status

All - It looks like I am going to miss the next two Silug meetings, so I thought I'd summarize my complaints with the whole RHEL8 experience here.


- Redhat has withheld many -devel subpackges from el8 repos, which naturally blocks a lot of packages. In my case, I can't make netatalk available in EPEL8. The list of blocked packages continues to grow with no firm statements indicating when this will be resolved: https://pagure.io/epel/issues

In the interim, I have an el8 package for netatalk  hosted on Copr:

- This comes as less of a surprise, but lots of packages still don't exist in EPEL8. Building these is a manual process of bugging the package maintainers, and then waiting for those maintainers to resolve their own package dependencies. For me, that includes Drupal and Remmina packages. These packages have missing dependencies themselves (more than I want to fix myself). This in itself is not a show stopping. After all, it's up to volunteers to do this work, but it is one more boat anchor added to the overall experience.

- Once a package is built and submitted for Fedora testing, they don't actually go into testing until a human pushes a button (apparently). For example, I submitted perl-SOAP-WSDL for testing, and there my request sat for 6 days until it actually went into testing, along with quite a few other packages. What happened? Did the button pusher go on vacation? Add those 6 days to the 14 day testing period, and it now takes 20 days for this package to make it to EPEL 8 stable. For those that wonder, this package is a dependency of ZoneMinder (which lives in RPMFusion now... so I can't build override).

- The el7 -> el8 upgrade tool was intentionally left out of CentOS. Apparently they think everyone enjoys rebuilding from scratch:

Here is a glimmer of hope:

This experience has soured my desire to continue to use CentOS. Conspiracy theory - This feels like RedHat is intentionally making it as inconvenient as possible to use the free version of their operating system. 

The irony is, I switched from Fedora to CentOS long time ago because, at the time, there was no upgrade tool in Fedora. Every 6 months required a fresh reinstall. Things have changed, however, and I look forward to discussing with my peers alternative solutions moving forward. Bucking up for RHEL8 is not out of the question.

For now, I have put my own plans to upgrade to CentOS 8 on hold indefinitely. For the short term, I am sticking with CentOS 7 and migrating the software I use into containers, so that I can get access to the latest versions of said software.



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