Ubuntu 12.04 LTS End-of-Life

We recently blogged about Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 (and its variants), as well as Windows Vista, turning 10 years old and going End-of-Life.

Today we turn to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, AKA Precise Pangolin, the first of the "Long Term Support" (LTS) versions of Ubuntu linux.  Ubuntu 12.04 LTS turns 5 years old this month, which is the length of LTS support from the vendor, Canonical.  As such, it will no longer be supported after Friday, April 28, 2017. This means that all maintenance will cease, and there will be no further updates to any software installed via vendor packages.

Operating systems that are abandoned by the companies that write and maintain them are called 'unsupported'.

We can make no security guarantees about unsupported operating systems, as any security or other vulnerabilities detected in the packaged software or the core operating systems will not be patched. 

By definition, machines running unsupported operating systems do not meet UT minimum security requirements; and therefore, by policy, are not supposed to be on UT's networks.

Those who keep running unsupported operating systems on their machines face yet other problems.  For example, new hardware, software, and third-party software updates may not work on their systems. In short, continuing to rely on Ubuntu 12.04 is a disaster waiting to happen.

We recommend anyone running Ubuntu 12.04 or earlier upgrade as soon as possible to either 14.04 LTS or 16.04 LTS. 

While you MAY be able to continue running version 12.04 LTS on campus for a while, at some (not too distant) time, the UT Information Security Office (ISO) will start quarantining such machines as non-compliant.  If you need to keep running such machines, you should file a security exception request with the ISO.  Nevertheless, you should keep in mind that should a major security issue arise affecting version 12.04, the ISO may immediately quarantine  machines vulnerable to that threat.

Please contact us at help@cns.utexas.edu if you have any questions or need help migrating to a newer version of OS.

Written by Eric Rostetter, Senior System Administrator
Questions or comments? The best and easiest way to contact us is via the CNS Help Desk form.


See also: Security