As a general rule, we support the latest point release build of base images until the announced end-of-life date for the distribution and version. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, like critical security vulnerabilities, we strive to provide at least 30 days of notice when we deprecate an image.
You can find image availability and deprecation announcements in our release notes.
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We typically provide images of the current and supported point releases for the distributions available on our platform. Normally, we update default images to their latest LTS releases upon their first point release, and we remove prior point releases when we support the latest point release. For example, we plan to offer Ubuntu 18.04.x until Ubuntu 20.04.1 becomes available.
For most distributions, a point release is a way of differentiating the package set included on installation media. However, some distributions (like RancherOS) use point releases to denote major updates. In these cases, we may continue offering prior versions in the same way that we continue offering trailing major releases for distributions like Ubuntu or CentOS.
One-Clicks follow the base image policy; they track the latest Ubuntu LTS release until the first point release of the next LTS release. For example, we updated images from 16.04 to 18.04 when 18.04.1 was released and expect to update again when 20.04.1 is released.
We provide slugs to use when creating resources programmatically. For base images, we provide slugs for the major versions of the distribution which always reference the most current build. For example, debian-9-x64 currently points to Debian 9.5 x64. You can list all available slugs with the API. One-click slugs denote the LTS release of the underlying distribution.
When we make a new LTS release of a base image available, we normally keep the prior version available for at least 30 days. We also provide updated base images from time to time to include package updates and patches.
We reserve the right to offer only the latest base builds and may remove older image builds without notice. We may also remove an image without notice if we become aware that an image has an inherent defect or security vulnerability that puts users or data at risk.
Because distributions continually release updates, we can’t guarantee that automated tooling will continue to work when the latest base build updates. If you are providing tools or services which require a specific patch level for a large group of users, you can use custom images or snapshots, but we do recommend choosing LTS and long-term supported images with automation tools.
Once we rebase a One-Click to the next LTS release, we normally keep the prior version available only via the API for at least 30 days.
Slugs for base images and One-Clicks that are in the 30-day deprecation period remain available via the API until the image is fully deprecated. All base image slugs that include minor versions (e.g. centos-6-5-x64) are deprecated and will be removed.