OpenELA is a trade association of open source Enterprise Linux distribution developers founded in support of the spirit of open source to create continuity for all Enterprise Linux downstream distributions. Our mission is to provide a secure, transparent, and reliable Enterprise Linux source that is globally available to all as a buildable base.

The long term success of our mission is ensured through the formation of this foundation with complete commitment to non-partisanship, transparency, community, inclusivity, and public benefit.

OpenELA’s primary function is to provide a consistent and secure upstream location for all who are interested in Enterprise Linux distribution sources. The success of this project will enable anyone to create and distribute a downstream variant of Enterprise Linux built by and for the community with dedicated contributions from market leading vendors and joint collaboration with community contributors. Anyone and everyone will have transparent access throughout the Enterprise Linux lifecycle without limitations.

Who is OpenELA:

OpenELA is a collaboration created and upheld by CIQ, Oracle, and SUSE. Open Source and community is in the DNA of OpenELA and we’ve hard coded the virtues and principles within our core tenets, policies, and bylaws. We enthusiastically encourage the broader community to participate and welcome all contributors (and “freeloaders”). Any and all individuals, corporations, and other entities that share Open Source values are appreciated and celebrated at OpenELA.

Our Mission:

  • To establish and make accessible the sources, tooling, and assets to all members, collaborators, and the open source Enterprise Linux distribution developers to create and maintain 1:1 downstream derivatives of EL
  • To allow and encourage contributions and enhancements from the upstream community in the form of “extras”
  • To always act in the best interests of the open source community and all downstream derivatives
  • To create an inclusive community of organizations and individuals to ensure the longevity, stability, and management of this project

OpenELA Founding Principles:

  1. Open Source Software: The primary focus of OpenELA is to enable and empower the creation, development, and distribution of open source software. Founded on open source core tenets, OpenELA commits to making all sources available unencumbered to the public; allowing anyone to view, modify, and utilize it in accordance with the upstream source licenses.
  2. Independence & Neutrality: OpenELA is an independent and neutral entity, providing a level playing field for all contributors and avoiding conflicts of interest.
  3. Transparency: OpenELA is transparent in all operations, finances, decision-making processes, and development.
  4. Collaboration: Collaboration is a fundamental aspect of the foundation. All members and users will work together, share knowledge, and collaborate on shared infrastructure and resources. Everyone is welcome to take an active role, participate and contribute. Contributions and involvement in the community may determine one’s influence and responsibilities.
  5. Security: Maintaining and exceeding the highest levels of security is essential. Processes for tracking and staying up-to-date with security bug fixes, errata, and vulnerabilities will be set to ensure the source repositories are up to date resulting in a more resilient and secure software ecosystem while continuing to benefit from the advantages of collaborative development and transparency.
  6. Sustainability: OpenELA is committed to providing long-term sustainability for all hosted projects, ensuring resilience, and viability for the foreseeable future.
  7. Community Governance: OpenELA will establish a transparent and inclusive community with representation from contributors and stakeholders to have a say in the decision-making process and project direction.


  • All sources necessary to achieve a 1:1 / bug-for-bug compatible version of EL which will be distributed via Git, encouraging community collaboration
  • Security errata data
  • Compatibility guidelines for downstream distributions to test their build results
  • A branding kit for all downstream distributions and supporters
  • User and Administration Documentation


OpenELA is in progress of becoming a Delaware 501(c)6 US non-profit entity and will be subject to the board of directors comprising both corporate and community members. The initial board of directors will include equal representation from our founding entities (CIQ, Oracle, and SUSE).