Fedora Drafts Plans For Retiring ARMv7 Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Fedora on 15 November 2021 at 03:16 PM EST. 20 Comments
It's crazy to think it has already been ten years since Arm disclosed ARMv8 with 64-bit support. Given the success of ARMv8 (and Armv9 now on the way) and there not being much in the way of useful ARMv7 hardware in recent years and the like, Fedora has drafted plans for retiring its ARMv7 support.

With Fedora 37 towards the end of next year (not the spring release of Fedora 36), they propose having ARMv7 support removed. There isn't much ARMv7 interest these days and that ARM target remains their last fully-supported 32-bit architecture. Fedora still builds some 32-bit x86 packages where needed but phasing out ARMv7 would now allow them to not have to worry about 32-bit support at large.

For those still actively using ARMv7 hardware, you could still run up through Fedora 36 that will remain supported until around June 2023. This frees up package maintainer headaches, redices the number of QA/testing targets, and all-around should be a wise move to enact for late 2022.

Many fond memories of ARMv7 back in the day like when involved in building a solar-powered, 96 ARM core super computer but these days it's time for ARMv7 and 32-bit to go... And meanwhile these days able to get 128 ARMv8 cores in a single CPU socket.

The ARMv7 retirement plans for Fedora Linux were posted today to the Fedora Wiki.

Those using a PandaBoard, Raspberry Pi 1, Raspberry Pi 2, or other aging Arm SBCs will need to find a new distribution come next year or stick it out with Fedora 36.

The change proposal does still need the sign-off of the Fedora Engineering and Steering Committee, but considering Red Hat is backing this change and the current state of the ARMv7 ecosystem, it will likely go through without objection.
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