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What AlmaLinux Foundation Membership Means for You

Jack Aboutboul


Hello Community. Today we announced that membership in the AlmaLinux Foundation is now open to everyone (It’s 100% Free). First of all, many are probably asking what is this? Second, who cares? I wanted to take a few brief moments to share some insight, some feelings and hopefully explain why this is so important.

When CentOS was initially founded by Lance Davis in 2004 no one really knew how fundamentally important it would grow to become in the Linux ecosystem–as a concept, as a distribution and really as a lynchpin of the modern internet. The concept of a community-driven OS, which drew upon an enterprise grade base made freely and widely available was a real novelty. As far as the technical aspect, the “entOS” part of CentOS, it has been resoundingly successful.

However, the “C” part of CentOS, Community, got lost somewhere along the way. If the plan was to ensure that it would always be in the hands of the community, the contributors and the people, to own and to control, CentOS never really managed to fulfill that ultimate purpose of community ownership.

CentOS has never been an organization with its own standing, it was always a loose collective of people. Throughout its history (which is a topic for another time) it has been wheeled and dealed, held hostage, transferred, fought about, bought and sold from one party to the next, ultimately landing at Red Hat. They own the Intellectual Property behind CentOS and are free and able to take it in whatever direction they want, as we have seen.

Today that all changes.

To answer our first question–What is this?–This is your voice. The AlmaLinux Foundation(Delaware Reg. 5561017) was created as a 501(c)(6) non-profit (the same as the Linux Foundation) in order to put OWNERSHIP of the OS, the Intellectual Property and the direction of the project into the hands of the community. By joining as a member (100% free for community members) you have the right and the ability to vote on board members and the direction of the project and other decisions as they will come up in the future.

We all own AlmaLinux now and no one can change that. Forever. Not CloudLinux, not any other corporation or anyone else. Our fate and future are in the hands of every member and is ours alone to control. We’re no longer bound by one person, group or entity. It can not be bought nor sold, nor transferred or fought about.

Who cares? You should. Anyone and everyone who is a member of the open source community and cares about the ideals of freedom, communal ownership and transparency. Anyone who lives by the principles of FOSS and anyone who relies on them–whether you’re running a single web server for your own personal needs or a company delivering a product for hundreds of thousands of customers.

You’re now free.

We realize you may have questions. We welcome all questions and can be reached via the AlmaLinux Community Chat and our Forums or on Reddit