Convert CentOS 8 to AlmaLinux 8

Following our introduction to AlmaLinux, you may be wanting to try it out.  Since most cloud providers don’t offer an AlmaLinux image yet, the easiest option is to convert CentOS 8 to AlmaLinux 8.  Luckily, AlmaLinux has made the conversion process very easy.

Prepare CentOS 8

First, make sure your CentOS 8 install is fully up to date:

[user@server] sudo dnf update

Now reboot your server:

[user@server] sudo reboot

Log back in and check you’re on version 8.3.2011

[user@server] cat /etc/redhat-release

You should see: CentOS Linux release 8.3.2011.

Download and run the conversion script

[user@server] curl -O https://raw.githubusercontent.com/AlmaLinux/almalinux-deploy/master/almalinux-deploy.sh
[user@server] sudo bash almalinux-deploy.sh

Your server will now switch to AlmaLinux repositories.  It will then replace CentOS RPMs with the AlmaLimux versions.  For me, this was a 755 step process, so it may take a while to complete.  Time for a cup of tea whilst you wait.

Assuming all goes well you’ll see the message:

Migration to AlmaLinux is completed

You should now reboot to complete the process:

[user@server] sudo reboot

When your server comes back up, check you’re running AlmaLinux.

[user@server] cat /etc/redhat-release

Now, you should see:  AlmaLinux release 8.3 (Purple Manul)

Assuming you do, you’re now running AlmaLinux and can test it out.  If you do find any bugs, please report them back to the repository.

What can I do with AlmaLinux?

Any software available with CentOS 8 is available already, as is the excellent EPEL repo.  Additional repositories, such as Remi Repo, should also be compatible but will require testing.

We’re already running our public time server on AlmaLinux, happily serving very accurate time to over 16,000 users per day. We used the method above on a newly installed cloud server to convert Centos to AlmaLinux rather than installing from an ISO.

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