Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Release Date and New Features


Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 (RHEL 8) has not been released, but, the beta was released on November 14 for you to get your hands dirty on the new version of world’s best enterprise operating system. This release came after IBM acquired Red Hat for $34 billion on October 28, 2018.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Release date

RHEL 8 is still in beta stage, and Red Hat is yet to anounce the date for general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8. We will update this space with the date of release of product once we hear from Red Hat

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Download Links

As said earlier, RHEL 8 beta is available for download. You can click the below link to download the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 beta.

You must have at least one active Red Hat subscription to download Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Beta ISO image files from the Red Hat Customer Portal.

Red Hat Developers Subscription (no-cost subscription):

Download Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Beta

Red Hat Customer Subscription:

Download Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Beta

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Overview

RHEL 8 is based on Fedora 28 and uses upstream Linux kernel 4.18. This release provides a stable, secure and good foundation for hybrid cloud deployments to support customer’s workloads.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Architectures

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 provides support for following architectures.

  • AMD and Intel 64-bit architectures
  • The 64-bit ARM architecture
  • IBM Power Systems, Little Endian
  • IBM Z

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – New Features

  1. The Cockpit is now available by default
  2. RHEL 8 comes with a new version of YUM version which is based on DNF. This new version is compatible with YUM v3 (RHEL 7)
  3. RPM v4.14 is distributed in RHEL 8. RPM now validates the whole package contents before starting the installation
  4. RHEL 8 content is other file systems through the two main repositories: BaseOS and Application Stream (AppStream)
  5. RHEL 8 support up to 4PB of physical memory
  6. Wayland is the default display server instead of the Xorg server in RHEL 8
  7. XFS now supports shared copy-on-write data extents
  8. nftables replaces iptables as the default network filtering framework
  9. Python 3.6 is the default Python version in RHEL 8
  10. PHP 7.2 comes with RHEL 8
  11. Nginx 1.14 is available in core repository in RHEL 8


Cockpit – a web-based interface for a system admin to perform admin tasks is now available by default RHEL repositories.

The cockpit is now compatible with mobile browsers and makes it easier to manage systems from a mobile device.

The Cockpits front page now includes the warning for missing updates and expired Red Hat subscription.

As a major enhancement, the Cockpit’s Networking page includes Firewall section that let the users to manage (add, remove, modify) firewall rules as well as to change the status (enable or disable) of the firewall.

A new tlog (session recorder) package and its associated Cockpit session player enables us to record and playback the user terminal sessions.


While RHEL 7 support maximum of 64TB of physical memory, RHEL 8 support up to 4PB of physical memory.

The sosreport can now report any loaded eBPF (extended Berkeley Packet Filtering) programs and maps in RHEL 8

Software management

The software is now managed by the new version of YUM which is based on DNF in Fedora. This new version has similar syntax and compatible with the previous version YUM v3 (RHEL 7)

The new version provides increased performance, support for modular content and stable APU for integration with tooling.

On RHEL 7, RPM utility verifies payload content of individual files while unpacking which leads to serious issues as if the payload is damaged, it is only validated after executing script actions, which are irreversible.

On RHEL 8, RPM command validates the entire package prior to installation using the hash.

Infrastructure services

Geolite2 databases now replace Geolite databases in RHEL 8.

Shells and command-line tools

The user nobody replaces nfsnobody with the user and group ID of 65534 in RHEL 8 by merging nobody (ID 99) and nfsnobody (ID 65534) of RHEL 7.

Web servers, databases, dynamic languages

MySQL 8.0, MariaDB 10.3, PostgreSQL 10 & 9.6 and Redis 4.0 are included in RHEL 8.

Now, in RHEL 8, Nginx 1.14 is available through the base repository. Nginx was previously obtained via Software Collection.

RHEL 8 is distributed with Python 3.6 and PHP 7.2. Python 2.7 is also available in the python2 package.


RHEL 8 comes with GNOME v3.28 with some enhancements such as an on-screen keyboard, GNOME boxes features, extended device support.

GNOME uses Wayland as their default display server instead of the Xorg server.

Though Wayland provides multiple advantages over, there are few features currently not available in RHEL 8.

File systems and storage

The XFS file system supports shared copy-on-write data extend functionality. This is similar to copy-on-write (COW) functionality on other file systems which enables two or more files to share a common set of data blocks. When there is any change in files, XFS breaks the link to common bocks and creates a new file.

Startis is a new local storage manager, and it provides managed file systems on top of storage pools.

High availability and clusters

We now have new pcs commands to list available watchdog devices and test watchdog devices.

The corosync log now has timestamps in it for better troubleshooting.



nftables replaces iptables as the default network filtering framework, and it uses tables for storing input, output and forward chains, as like iptables.

You can also convert your existing iptables or ip6tables rules into the suitable ones for nftables.


nftables becomes the default backend for the firewalld daemon.


OpenSSH package has been upgraded to 7.8p1, and it removed the support for SSH version 1 protocol.


RHEL 8 now comes with qemu-kvm v2.12. This version provides few enhancements like UEFI guest boot, vCPU hot plug and hot unplug, guest I/O threading and Q35 machine type.

That’s All.

Further Reading

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Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 – Release Date and New Features