With the advent of ALP and Slowroll, openSUSE users may be left scratching their heads. But don’t worry! This article tells you the answer and what the future holds.

Over the years, the openSUSE project has adhered to a strict release model with two main releases - the stable openSUSE Leap and the rolling openSUSE Tumbleweed.
These releases have provided stability and reliability and have built a well-known reputation within the open source community.

However, as the openSUSE project looks ahead, major changes are coming that will reshape the way we perceive and engage with this renowned Linux distribution.

The upcoming changes promise to usher in a new era where established names will be replaced with new ones such as Slowroll, ALP (Adaptive Linux Platform), and more.

There is also openSUSE MicroOS and its various variants such as Aeon (GNOME Desktop) and Kalpa (KDE Plasma Desktop), which are also expected to undergo name changes.

Given that, even staunch openSUSE enthusiasts will need help to understand the changes and new concepts, so what’s in store for the average Linux user? For them, it may be a case of scratching their heads.

In this article, we will elaborate on the changes that are happening to openSUSE so that you can quickly understand what is happening in the ecosystem of this cute green chameleon that is loved by users all over the world.

openSUSE Leap 15.5, it all started with ALP

To explain what led to the emergence of ALP ((Adaptable Linux Platform Adaptable Linux Platform), we need a brief review. Here is the key information.

Let’s assume you are a regular desktop Linux user (as we all are among mainstream users), using your workstation for common tasks such as web browsing, media playback, office tasks, and so on. In this case, it’s perfectly fine to limit our understanding of Linux to the desktop versions of various distributions.

On the other hand, if you’re involved in the world of enterprise IT in any way, you’ll know that almost all of the IT infrastructure and services we know and use today are driven behind the scenes by the holy grail of recent years - virtualisation, containers, and the tools to manage them.


It’s a vast area of business reasonably anticipated by Linux. The demand for highly specialised server platforms has led to a spike in immutable operating systems designed to manage large-scale containerised workloads and provide enhanced security.

Leading Linux vendors, such as Red Hat, Canonical, and others, have introduced their solutions, including CoreOS, Fedora Silverblue, and Ubuntu Core. suse has come up with its own - SUSE Linux Enterprise Micro and openSUSE MicroOS.
ALP is the next step in the evolution of SUSE offerings, but with a slightly different focus.

While MicroOS remains an excellent solution for home users and small businesses, ALP is more focused on medium to large businesses - the enterprise space.

Because the platform is still a prototype, Linux users are sometimes confused and think of ALP as the successor and continuation of openSUSE’s flagship Leap. Let’s be clear - the two distros are unrelated! To make things clearer, we will explain below.

Is ALP the successor to openSUSE Leap?

openSUSE Leap is built on SLE (SUSE Linux Enterprise) source code, which makes it binary compatible. Meanwhile, ALP is based on itself - which means it has its own source code.

Furthermore, the goals of these two distributions are different. Whereas Leap aims to cater for servers and regular Linux desktop users, the concept of ALP is irrelevant to desktop users.
ALP is a fully server-oriented operating system, highly specialised and entirely focused on containerised workloads, abstracting away both the hardware and application layers.
In other words, dear openSUSE Leap users, ALP is not the answer to your needs. It is not intended to provide desktop functionality, nor is it relevant to the Linux desktop space.
If we go on, we should also add that Leap is clearly heading towards its farewell song. But before you feel bad, we have good news - something new and promising is coming. Here are the details.


Goodbye Leap, welcome Slowroll

What we’ll say right away is that the familiar point release model that openSUSE Leap has been following will soon be a thing of the past. Though often underestimated, the distro has been known for years for its excellent reliability and is seen as a solid platform for both servers and desktops.

However, openSUSE has decided it’s time for a change of direction. In this direction, not long ago users were asked for their thoughts on a future Leap successor. Significantly, we are no longer discussing whether there will be a successor, but rather who it will be. Two options were presented:
Linarite - a traditional old-school desktop distro that may have a more limited choice of packages than Leap.
Slowroll - a derivative of Tumbleweed, designed to offer more stability than the full-scrolling Tumbleweed.

After analysing the results of the survey, it’s clear that the community prefers Slowroll, so while Leap is fading from the scene, Slowroll is coming into its own and finding a place in the hearts of openSUSE fans.

But whatever you do, don’t be in a hurry to give up on Leap! The transition will take a long time, as everything is still in its early stages. Moreover, openSUSE Leap 15.6 will be released in June 2024 as planned.
Given its maintenance period, which will last at least until the end of 2025, openSUSE Leap will continue to be available to users. However, it is expected that 15.6 will be the last release of the Leap series. With that said, let’s take a look at what its successor, openSUSE Slowroll, will bring to the table.

What is openSUSE Slowroll?

openSUSE Slowroll should fill the void left by the termination of the Leap releases, but follows a slightly different concept. The original name chosen says it all: it will be a rolling release distro, rolling at a slower pace.

In other words, imagine that at one end of the spectrum is Leap, which has a stable, reliable and tested software package, but in order to get that stability, a slightly older version of the software is provided. At the other end is Tumbleweed, offering the latest and greatest software.

Now draw a line between them - this is where openSUSE Slowroll is, but a little closer to Tumbleweed. It is a compromise between the stable Leap and the scrolling Tumbleweed.

However, this raises some issues. For example, what happens to users who rely on Leap as a server? Would a Tumbleweed-based Slowroll provide the same reliability and stability, given its slightly scrolling nature? It’s not the best solution for a server.

On the other hand, if you are a Leap desktop user, it will answer your question.Slowroll is expected to be reliable and stable on the desktop side, close to the level provided by Leap, but with a newer software version.

As the project is still in the very early stages, it remains to be seen how it develops. For those of you who are most impatient and want to get the first taste of Slowroll’s vibe, here’s how to migrate your current Tumbleweed system to it.


With the imminent arrival of ALP and Slowroll, the road ahead seems uncertain for many openSUSE users. However, there is no need to worry! As the openSUSE community continues to move forward, they are not lost in the transition, but are paving the way for a promising future.

We hope this article has inspired you enough to help you find your way in the vibrant openSUSE world these days. And, if you have any questions, please let us know in the comments section below.