Backed by big tech?

Am I the only one who finds it unsettling that rocky Linux is proudly backed by big tech such as Google and Amazon?

Or am I missing something?

Amazon has very generously allowed us to use them for most of our infrastructure (x86_64 and aarch64). Without them, we wouldn’t have Rocky Linux 8 at the beginning and now Rocky Linux 9 and our build system peridot. I can’t remember what Google may give us directly.

I’m genuinely curious though, what about it is unsettling for you? I’m very thankful for Amazon’s AWS folks for giving us a space and enabling us to continue to build and test our distribution. But perhaps I’m missing what may not seem right to you and likely a few others out there.

Alma Linux is as well, most big projects are backed by Big Tech because they use it too or they can make money off it in some way.

Having companies generously donate resources isn’t a problem in my opinion. It’s one of the ways they can give back to the projects they use.

I might find it unsettling if some of the Big Tech companies were able to buy their way onto the leadership board and direct the control of the project… but they can’t. We were very explicit in setting up the Charter/By-Laws that it’s members only and members are active in the community.

There’s some stuff in the FAQ if you want to look. I can point out a few sections specifically if you are interested. But I think this one may be the best starting point for this particular issue/reference:

Hope that helps some.

It’s good to ask questions about sponsorship - where does time, money and hardware come from for a Linux distro?

Rocky Linux is fairly typical in this area, you can see it in other projects as well:

It would be very hard to find a distribution these days that does not have some kind of sponsorship. The only way I think that might happen would be if you weren’t building a full distro, but reliant on one of the others for most of the core packages (think Manjaro → Arch, or Mint → Ubuntu). Even then, it’s hard work lol.

The sponsorships are obviously beneficial to the project, and the sponsor generally gets something out of it as well. In the case of Rocky Linux, I think most of our project sponsors are looking for a solid and reliable enterprise “base” that they can use to support their infrastructure or power their Linux-related projects. And I imagine many of them like the fact that it’s 100% compatible with RHEL by design.

Just letting you know that sponsorship is pretty typical - whether in the form of developer time, money, hardware, bandwidth, or other things. Someone has to pay the bills - this stuff is not cheap to host or build(!)

Good to be wary though - I encourage everyone to know who’s contributing to things you use, no matter what that is!

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