Fedora plans to deliver RHEL builds based on Fedora Rawhide

The Fedora developers released through an advertisement the formation of a Special Interest Group (SIG) in order to support the Enterprise Linux Next (ELN) project, which aims to provide continuous builds of Red Hat Enterprise Linux based on the Fedora Rawhide repository.

This new proposed development process, implies that new RHEL branches have a Fedora branch creation every three years, that for their part will develop separately for some time, until it is taken to the final product.

While ELN will allow emulation of Red Hat Enterprise Linux builds based on a randomly created fragment of the Fedora Rawhide repository.

It is mentioned that until now, since the fork of Fedora, the preparation of RHEL has been done behind closed doors. With CentOS Stream, Red Hat intends to make the RHEL development process more open and transparent to the community.

The mission of the ELN (Enterprise Linux Next) Special Interest Group (SIG) is to achieve a version of RHEL that can be started continuously.

Using the classic approach, RHEL forks from Fedora and develops privately for a long time before it re-emerges fully formed as a Product. Instead, we want to take advantage of Fedora's Rawhide and advances in CI / CD technologies to fork and start hardening a version of RHEL at any arbitrary time.

ELN aims to make the bifurcation phase CentOS Stream / RHEL Next by Fedora be more predictable by using techniques similar to continuous integration systemsIn addition, ELN will provide a separate build root and build process to rebuild the Fedora Rawhide repository as RHEL.

Moreover, developers who plan to sync successful rebuilds mention by ELN with the experimental builds of RHEL Next, adding additional changes to packages that are not allowed in Fedora (for example, adding trademarks). At the same time, developers will try to minimize the differences by dividing them at the conditional block level in spec files.

With ELNs, Fedora maintainers will be able to detect and test early changes that could affect RHEL development.

What is the benefit of the ELN?

The advent and refocusing of CentOS Stream has provided a clearer story about the development of RHEL. Fedora continues to be the development hub for the next major release of RHEL, while CentOS Stream serves that bottom-up role for stabilization and updates.

So some of us have started exploring ways to ensure that Fedora builds on its valuable position in the ecosystem. We decided to focus on simplifying the process by which Fedora forks and becomes Red Hat Enterprise Linux. 

Among other things, it will be possible to check the expected changes of the conditional blocks in the spec files, that is, Build a package when conditions are triggered with "% {rhel}" set to "9" (the ELN variable "% { fedora} »will return" false "), simulating building a package for a future RHEL branch.

ELN will also allow to experiment bringing new ideas to life without affecting core Fedora builds.

This includes ELNs that can be used to test Fedora packages against new compiler flags, disabling experimental or inappropriate RHEL features, changing hardware architecture requirements, and enabling additional CPU extensions.

For example, without changing the standard package build process in Fedora, it is mentioned that you can simultaneously test a build with AVX2 statement support enabled, then evaluate the performance impact of using AVX2 in packages and decide whether to implement the change in the main Fedora distribution.

Finally if you are interested in knowing more about it, you can consult the details the following link.

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