What’s happening to CentOS? well…what’s happened to CentOS? short answer: a little Earthquake.
And such little Earthquake is going to have some direct/indirect consequences on all projects that (previously) based their software on CentOS Linux Distribution.
As stated by SkykingOH, FreePBX is (almost) Linux Distribution agnostic (OK, it has some very specific requirements about which Linux Distribution you can install to) but FreePBX Distro (the FreePBX distribution) was based on CentOS Linux Distribution and now things are going to change (are changed).
I’m not worried about that specifically.
Personally I like to deploy Scientific Linux on my Linux servers but that’s matter of personal tastes and visions: in the past, during the latest bad CentOS time, I saw in Scientific Linux a far better alternative to CentOS in terms of stability (either against their TUV: Red Hat). They’re now evaluating very seriously what consequences the latest news are going to have on their academic distribution.
I have read the discussion wrt RH+CentOS on the SL- mailing list and the general feeling I got from the comments I read was that the reaction there is akin to “Yawnnnnn. . .” I have also read the CentOS and Fedora community takes on the same thing and other than evidence of Rah-Rah marketing bumpf in some of the posts (from people I know simply do not write that way themselves) have obtained little clue as to what this merger (for want of a better word) will mean in practice, whether for good or ill. My prognostication ability has declined with age and the future remains a little dark to me.
What I do wonder about is why FreePBX does not simply set itself up as a CentOS Special Interest Group as suggested at https://www.centos.org/variants/ and go from there. I am not clear on what the relationship will be in the future (if any) between the FreePBX distribution and CentOS. I have a selfish motive here in that I prefer to deal strictly with one Linux distro throughout our organization and that preference is in fact what brought me to FreePBX in the first place.
Yes, I know that FrewPBX changes core elements and that in consequence it is not ‘really’ CentOS to begin with. None-the-less, knowing that CentOS-6.5 is out the door was a good indicator to me that I should be seeing similar updates to FreePBX shortly thereafter. Now, I am not so certain.
Further, I find on-line web forums not nearly as useful as a mailing list so I tend to go to the CentOS ML for most of my support questions that do not specifically deal with Asterisk or FreePBX. I have some doubt that support avenue will remain open to me as FreePBX splits entirely away from CentOS.
I have formed the opinion, rightly or wrongly, that FreePBX is positioned more or less as an ‘appliance’ distro with the attitude, install it and leave it alone. As a result I fear that FreePBX on its own will not manage to attract the range of contributors needed to provide much in the way of sysadmin support outside those two core features, Asterisk and FreePBX.
So, to clarify; Can I install FreePBX as an rpm package on top of a stock CentOS-X (or SL) distro? And will that install the dependencies and do the changes needed to work so that I will end up with a CentOS-X plus FreePBX install?
Regarding the SIG (CentOS Variants) I think Tony answered me yet here so things are moving for sure.
Like you my prognostication ability has declined with age (I’m forty years old!) and the future remains uncertain but here around there are very smart people and I hope they are brave enough to take and follow the right and difficult route of freedom (once again and every time is needed).
I (as user) really don’t know what to expect from this merge but I’m quite sure changes are undergoing and some of them are happening in deep, beneath the surface: I hope guys around are good divers.
But, remember, you’re speaking about FreePBX on top of a Linux Distribution (say CentOS or Scientific Linux, as examples).
FreePBX Distro (which was CentOS based) is another different story: changes are happening (are happened) to a core component of FreePBX Distro not (AFAIK) on the FreePBX (as an application) itself.
In the case of CentOS + FreePBX the simple fact you modify the original repositories list (eventually adding some others) will “mark” your so-built system as a “non genuine” CentOS one. This classification/nomenclature was valid before (from the point of view of CentOS) and I think it will continue (from point of view of Red Hat/CentOS).
I think also generic Asterisk+FreePBX’s users will be less affected (if any) because they don’t use the FreePBX Distro but, at the same time, FreePBX Distro’s users benefit of features that are available/developed only on/for the FreePBX Distro.
Yes we are attempting to get the VoIP SIG for FreePBX, but that is not a simple overnight processes. What Red Hat has requested of its sub distros is that we do this immediately. So while we wait we must change the naming or risk a lawsuit, which is something we do not have time to deal with.
That said, I don’t see a divergence of CentOS and FreePBX in the future. We get all RPMs from the upstream provider (CentOS/Red Hat) and when 6.6 comes out then we will release FreePBX Distro 6.6.
Also not sure why you make the comment about 6.5 being out the door. We have been using 6.5 for months now. Even before we had to re-brand it we never pulled from CentOS direct for packages for the FreePBX Distro. We have always controlled out yum repos and provide upgrade paths between all versions of the Distro
IMHO, the last one. I suspect this not so marginal question is floating around because we always to keep in mind that Red Hat is (first of all) a private company and it acts as a private company (it’s not a “Non Profit Foundation”).
On my FreePBX system the centos-release went directly from a file containing CentOS-6.4 (final) to a soft link to schmooze-release. By out-the-door I mean that CentOS-6.5 has been on my other servers since mid-January and that the FreePBX continued to report itself as CentOS-6.4 up to the recent change. Updates are regularly applied so I cannot imagine how I missed the move from 6.4 to 6.5.
Pragmatically and purely from my experience, there is nothing useful in the RedHat domain that is not available equally in the Debian domain, conversely there are quite a few things much harder to build under Redhat than Debian, Both are linux based, but linux gets better with time, last time I looked this non-CentOS based distro is based on 2.6 but Debian has used 3.2 for three years now, if you use virtualization or perhaps kernel timing, the difference is quite notable.
Actually I do recall the trials and tribulations as RH went to subscription based binaries. After a year on paid support I decided I was paying to provide training to various RH support personnel rather than getting anything worth paying for and left the official RH family. My route to FreePBX was:
RedHat 5.? -> RH-6 -> RH-7 -> RH-8-ish (never converted all the boxes and was gone from RH by 9) -> WhiteBox Linux 3?/4? -> CaOS-1? -> CentOS-4/5/6 -> FreePBX