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Rocky Linux version 9.3 is generally available. The RHEL alternative thus quickly succeeds version 9.3 of the official RHEL.

Rocky Linux will be available immediately for x86-64, aarch64, ppc64le and s390x architectures. That announced the organization, CIQ, of the free alternative to Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) on Monday.

Four key new features

The organization itself identifies the four most important novelties. First is the return of cloud and container images for ppc64le. Then, the kernel-rt package is integrated into a subpackage of kernel. A new kernel-uki package is also introduced, and the arrival of java-21-openjdk marks the arrival of a new version of Java.

Users currently running Rocky Linux 9 can upgrade, free of charge of course, to version 9.3. What is not yet coming to this version is KDE live image. It had “problems during the testing phase,” according to the organization. The functionality, therefore, remains the same as in the previous version of Rocky Linux.

Follows shortly after RHEL 9.3 availability

Like other RHEL alternatives, Rocky Linux makes an effort to follow up on new version releases from Red Hat quickly. Red Hat proposed version 9.3 on Nov. 8; Alma Linux 9.3 was released just days later.

CIQ also decided earlier this year to partner with SUSE and Oracle to encourage developers to create a RHEL-compatible distribution. The OpenELA collaboration is a response to Red Hat’s decision to put RHEL behind a paywall.

Also read: Lightning strikes the open-source world: SUSE builds its own RHEL variant