Scope of Coverage Details
Supporting Core Functionality in Red Hat Products
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7
Red Hat Enterprise Linux, along with other Red Hat Products such as Red Hat Enterprise MRG, include a number of new and enhanced features. While adding features, these products also introduce new packaging and support guidelines. The supported functionality in these products is best described through the concept of component (comps) groups and packages.
The component groups define the core functions of Red Hat Products and contain one or more packages. Each of these components groups is user selectable at installation for the utmost flexibility. The component groups continue to be available via the Red Hat Network for post-install additions.
In addition to the component groups and their packages, Red Hat Products also include a number of supporting packages. These supporting packages, also referred to as dependent packages, are required for component group functionality. The dependent package support is linked to the primary function of the main software package. Red Hat only provides support for dependent packages in their primary use case as they are used by the packages they are associated with. For example, 'libpurple' (Pidgin's library) should be utilized in support of Pidgin.
A list of packages and whether or not they are core packages can be found in the package manifest in the technical notes for the release.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 8
The vast majority of packages in Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 8 BaseOS repository and AppStream repository will be maintained for the full 10 years of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 life cycle. To determine how each package in these two repositories are going to be supported and maintained, please use the decision tree shown below. Using nginx as our first example, you will see that it is included in the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Application Streams Life Cycle and is therefore supported for the time period specified in that policy, and its maintenance will adhere to the errata criteria for the Production Phase of the release. Using glibc and libgfortran for our second example, you will see that it is not included in the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Application Streams Life Cycle and that glibc is included in the Compatibility level 1 table and libgfortran is included in the Compatibility level 2 table of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8: Application Compatibility GUIDE (RHEL 8 ACG). Therefore, they are both supported for the full 10 years of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 life cycle and their maintenance will adhere to the errata criteria for the Production Phase of the release. Using openssl as our last example, we can see that it is not included in the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Application Streams Life Cycle and that it is not listed in the RHEL 8 ACG. Any component not included in a compatibility level listing of the RHEL 8 ACG can be assumed to be level 2 and is therefore supported for the full 10 years of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 life cycle and its maintenance will adhere to the errata criteria for the Production Phase of the release.
Supporting Preferred Management Interfaces
The KVM Hypervisor, delivered as qemu-kvm in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 and later, should not be invoked directly via the command line. It should instead be invoked via the libvirt management API and its associated tools. Red Hat recommends management of KVM through the libvirt API rather than direct invocation of qemu-kvm to ensure a stable public interface.
Supporting Intended Functionality in Red Hat JBoss Products
Red Hat JBoss products can be deployed in a multitude of ways. Some of the technologies, like Enterprise Application Server (EAP), can technically be split up and isolated. However, Red Hat provides support for our products as they were shipped and tested by us, not isolated out into standalone products. Any other use has unknown consequences and is untested by Red Hat. Our products are always best deployed as they are tested in order to take advantage of the enterprise quality engineering and testing we apply to the intended use cases.
Additionally, Red Hat Enterprise MRG: Messaging contains component groups and dependent packages. Please reference the above guidelines for additional details regarding core and dependent packages.
Optional and Supplementary Software
In addition to the functionality in our Red Hat/Red Hat JBoss products, Red Hat provides additional software packages (rpms) for the convenience of our customers. These software packages cover open source licensed software (in the “Optional” Red Hat Network channel) and proprietary licensed software (in the "Supplementary” Red Hat Network channel). Software packages in the Optional and Supplementary channels are not supported, nor are the ABIs guaranteed.
NOTE: The Virtio Windows Drivers are available on all releases of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 in their respected channels and are fully supported. The Virtio Windows Drivers are also available on the Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization and Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform channels and are fully supported in those products. For more information on this change, please see "How are the virtio drivers supported in Red Hat products?"
Technology Preview features provide early access to upcoming product innovations, enabling you to test functionality and provide feedback during the development process. However, these features are not fully supported under Red Hat Enterprise Linux Subscription Level Agreements, may not be functionally complete, and are not intended for production use. As Red Hat considers making future iterations of Technology Preview features generally available, we will attempt to resolve any issues that customers experience when using these features.
During the development of a Technology Preview feature, additional components may become available to the public for testing. Because Technology Preview features are still under development, Red Hat cannot guarantee the stability of such features. As a result, if you are using Technology Preview features, you may not be able to seamlessly upgrade to subsequent releases of that feature. While Red Hat intends to fully support Technology Preview features in future releases, we may discover that a feature does not meet the standards for enterprise viability. If this happens, we cannot guarantee that Technology Preview features will be released in a supported manner. Some Technology Preview features may only be available for specific hardware architectures.