Fedora 41 Looks To Finally Say Goodbye To Python 2.7

Written by Michael Larabel in Fedora on 2 July 2024 at 08:29 AM EDT. 37 Comments
A change proposal has been filed by Red Hat engineer Miro Hrončok for retiring Python 2.7 within Fedora 41 and to drop packages still depending upon Python 2.

Python 2 has been end-of-life since 1 January 2020 and with CentOS 7 being EOL now and RHEL 8's Python 2.7 application support also being retired, Red Hat developers feel the time has come to remove Python 2.7 packages from Fedora. There will be no Python 2 support moving forward other than PyPy.

There are a handful of packages still depending upon Python 2.7 that will likely be retired in the process too, which are also packages not readily maintained. The main caveat though is GIMP 2 still being dependent upon Python 2... Fedora 41 is hoping to ship GIMP 3.0 if the long-awaited release finally happens in time. But should GIMP 2 remain in Fedora 41, this would delay the Python 2.7 retirement until next year with Fedora 42.

Fedora Python2.7 package

The Fedora change proposal explains:
"The Python maintainers will no longer regularly backport security fixes to Python 2.7 in RHEL, due to the the end of maintenance of RHEL 7 and the retirement of the Python 2.7 application stream in RHEL 8. We provided this obsolete package for 5 years beyond its retirement date and will continue to provide it until Fedora 40 goes end of life. Enough has been enough.

We do not wish to simply orphan the package, as we are afraid it would not receive proper care if taken by somebody else. If there are potential maintainers interested in maintaining Python 2 in Fedora beyond Fedora 41, they can talk to us and demonstrate their ability and will to take care of Python 2 by joining the maintenance early.

Users who need to run their application in Python 2 should do so on a platform that offers support for it. Running applications on unsupported Python is dangerous.

Developers who still need to test their software on Python 2 can use containers with older Fedora releases or unsupported CentOS/RHEL versions."

The F41 change proposal still needs the approval of the Fedora Engineering and Steering Committee (FESCo), but it will presumably proceed -- well, assuming GIMP 3.0 finally releases this summer so as to not block the Python 2.7 removal.
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