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Red Hat Retirement Information

This article applies to: Software Licensing

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Dates important to holders of Red Hat license on campus:

  • March 31, 2017: Red Hat retired Red Hat Enterprise 5 (RHEL5).
  • July 30, 2017: Red Hat retired the Red Hat Network Classic Hosted (RHN Hosted) service. This impacted 297 servers using Cornell's Red Hat proxy server to pull update patches.
  • August 31, 2019: Cornell's Red Hat Satellite Server no longer available.
  • August 31, 2019: Cornell's Red Hat self-support site license no longer available.

Since Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 is no longer supported under our campus agreement, and because of the severity of the recent Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, CIT strongly recommends that everyone with a Red Hat Enterprise 5 server upgrade to a newer version of CentOS or a supported version of Red Hat immediately.  

With the diminishing use of Red Hat on campus, CIT is discontinuing the self-support campus license as of August 2019. Cornell's site license is a self-support license that does not offer any technical support and its value lies in the patches it provides. CentOS is free, binary compatible to Red Hat, and offers the same set of patches to the Linux Community. Existing Red Hat users should be able to transition to CentOS with minimal effort.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 Options

Visit the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 Options page for information on available options for you.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 or 7 Options

Visit the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 or 7 page for information on available options for you.

Cost of Red Hat License

Information on cost of Red Hat license can be found at:

CIT's Plan to use CentOS and Red Hat

CIT’s Managed Server Service will use CentOS for servers that do not require Red Hat for application support. Oracle and IBM applications typically require a Red Hat OS for full vendor support. As of August 31, 2019, CIT anticipates needing 20-30 Red Hat licenses with all the other servers converted to CentOS.  

How to Convert a Server from Red Hat to CentOS

It takes approximately 13 commands to convert a Red Hat system to CentOS. Community help is available by contributors at  and

How Servers Will Get Patches if it is in 10 Space

The CentOS patching server and the Red Hat Subscription Service is available through Transproxy for servers in 10-space.

Comparison of CentOS to Red Hat

One opinion can be found at:

Help with Red Hat Retirement

If you have any questions, please contact the IT Service Desk.


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