Amazon finally has released (opens in a new tab) the latest major release of a native Linux distro after RC teased us last year.
Last year’s edition, aptly named AL 2022, consisted only of release candidates, leaving users waiting for full distribution, however the company finally announced AL 2023.
Like the 2022 release, AWS has promised full updates every two years and smaller patches four times a year, however this time the promise may come true when AL 2023 is generally available.
Amazon Linux 2023
Its own Linux distribution is, as you might expect, optimized for the cloud (specifically AWS), with promises of “a high standard of security, a predictable lifecycle, and consistent updating.”
The second promise, bi-annual major releases and quarterly patches, is designed to make OS lifecycle planning and management easier.
The company also shared what minor updates might include: “major changes to the kernel, toolset, GLib C, OpenSSL, and any other system libraries and tools.”
The initial two-year support period is backed up by another three-year maintenance phase during which security updates will be pushed out, giving users until early 2028 before they really need to consider upgrading, by which time AL 2025 and AL 2027 are planned for release.
The timeline also shows the end of life of AL 1 for the security update, set for December 31, 2023 after 13 years. AL 2’s end of life follows shortly thereafter in mid-2025, which means around seven years of support.
The self-proclaimed “most used Linux distribution on AWS” is now generally available at no extra charge in all AWS regions.