This topic provides answers to frequently asked questions about Alibaba Cloud Linux images.

What are the differences between Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 and Alibaba Cloud Linux 3?

Alibaba Cloud Linux 2, which was originally called Aliyun Linux 2, differs from Alibaba Cloud Linux 3 in kernel version, compiler, and lifecycle. The following table describes the differences.
Difference Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 Alibaba Cloud Linux 3
Kernel version 4.19 5.10
Compiler GCC 4.8.5 GCC 10.2
End-of-life date 2024-03-31 2031-04-30

What are the differences among Alibaba Cloud Linux images?

For information about the release notes of Alibaba Cloud Linux images, see Release notes and Release notes. For information about the relationships among Alibaba Cloud Linux images, see the "Images" section in Alibaba Cloud Linux images.

How do I use Alibaba Cloud Linux images in Alibaba Cloud?

Alibaba Cloud provides Alibaba Cloud Linux public images. When you create an Elastic Compute Service (ECS) instance, you can click Public Image and then select a version of Alibaba Cloud Linux images.

Am I charged for using Alibaba Cloud Linux images in Alibaba Cloud ECS?

No, Alibaba Cloud Linux images are provided free of charge. You are charged only for the ECS instances that use the images.

Which ECS instance types do Alibaba Cloud Linux images support?

Alibaba Cloud Linux images support most ECS instance types, including ECS Bare Metal Instance types.
Note Alibaba Cloud Linux images do not support instances that run on the Xen virtual machine monitor.

Do Alibaba Cloud Linux images support 32-bit applications or libraries?

No, Alibaba Cloud Linux images do not support 32-bit applications or libraries.

Does Alibaba Cloud Linux provide a graphical user interface (GUI)?

No, Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 and 3 images do not provide a graphical user interface (GUI).

Can I use Alibaba Cloud Linux images in an on-premises environment?

Yes, you can use Alibaba Cloud Linux images in an on-premises environment. Alibaba Cloud Linux provides local images in the QCOW2 format. These images support only kernel-based virtual machines (KVMs). For more information, see Use Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 images in an on-premises environment or Use Alibaba Cloud Linux 3 images in an on-premises environment.

Can I view the source code of Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 components?

Yes, Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is open source. You can use the yumdownloader tool or visit the official Alibaba Cloud download pages to download the source code package. You can also download the source code tree of the Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 kernel from GitHub. For more information, visit Github.

Is Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 backward-compatible with the historical Aliyun Linux versions?

Yes, Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is compatible with Aliyun Linux 17.01.
Note You may need to re-compile a compiled kernel module on Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 before the module can be used.

Which third-party applications can run on Alibaba Cloud Linux 2?

Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is binary compatible with CentOS 7.6.1810. Therefore, applications that can run on CentOS can also run on Alibaba Cloud Linux 2.

What are the advantages of Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 over other Linux operating systems?

Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is binary compatible with CentOS 7.6.1810 and provides differentiated operating system features.

Compared with CentOS and Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 has the following advantages:
  • Frequent updates and updated Linux kernels, user-mode software, and toolkits are provided.
  • Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 works out of the box and requires minimal configurations.
  • Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is optimized to work with cloud infrastructure and maximizes performance for users.
  • Unlike RHEL, Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 does not have runtime charges. Different from CentOS, Alibaba Cloud provides commercial support for Alibaba Cloud Linux 2.

How does Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 protect data security?

Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 is binary compatible with CentOS 7.6.1810 and RHEL 7.6 and complies with the RHEL safety specifications. Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 uses the following methods to protect your data:
  • Uses industry-standard vulnerability scan and security test tools to perform periodical security scanning.
  • Periodically assesses the CVE patch updates of CentOS 7 to fix operating system security vulnerabilities.
  • Supports existing solutions of Alibaba Cloud for operating system security hardening.
  • Uses the same mechanism as CentOS 7 to release user security alerts and patch updates.

Does Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 support data encryption?

Yes, Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 retains the CentOS 7 data encryption toolkit and supports the data encryption solution coordinately implemented by Key Management Service (KMS) and CentOS 7.

How do I grant permissions to manage Alibaba Cloud Linux 2?

You can grant management permissions in Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 in the same manner as you would in CentOS 7. This means you can use the same commands to grant management permissions in Alibaba Cloud Linux 2 as you would in CentOS 7. The default permission configurations in images of these two operating systems are the same.