Suse Linux Enterprise expands regular support to 10 years

SLE version 11 and up will come with 10 years of general support instead of the seven, matching services from competitors

Suse Linux Enterprise (SLE) version 11 and up will come with 10 years of general support instead of the seven years offered up to now, in a move that matches services from competitors.

"We will move to a new life cycle of Suse Linux Enterprise," said Nils Brauckmann, president and general manager for Suse, during his keynote at the Susecon 2013 conference in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. A video of the keynote was posted on YouTube.

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"Suse Linux Enterprise 11 is the first major version to receive 10 years of general support followed by 3 years of extended support (LTSS). We consider this the new standard Suse Linux Enterprise life cycle going forward, covering versions 12 and on as well," said Gerald Pfeifer, senior director of Suse product management and operations, in an email Wednesday. Suse sells open-source Linux software to businesses.

Suse offers different packages for extended support. Extending the support to 13 years will cost $60,000 for up to 100 servers and $80,000 for up to 500 servers, said Pfeifer. Support for an unlimited number of servers can be extended for $125,000 he said, adding that these are standard prices that Suse has been using for several years.

By moving from a seven-plus-three-year support cycle to a 10-plus-three-year support cycle, customers get more time under general support, Brauckmann said during his keynote. The decision to increase the support cycle was made a couple of weeks ago and is a direct reaction to customer requests, he added.

Suse's general support extension follows Red Hat's move in January last year to extend the life cycle of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5 and 6 from seven to 10 years, in response to enterprise customer demand.

Oracle Linux, which is based on RHEL, expanded its life cycle support from eight to 10 years in February last year. CentOS, an Enterprise Linux distribution that is based on a rebuild of RHEL, has also been offering 10-year support as a standard for a while.

Loek is Amsterdam Correspondent and covers online privacy, intellectual property, open-source and online payment issues for the IDG News Service. Follow him on Twitter at @loekessers or email tips and comments to loek_essers@idg.com

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