16 February 2009

Latest and greatest(untested)?!

Linus released
  • 2.6.24 on January 24th 2008,
  • 2.6.26 on July 13th, 2008, and
  • 2.6.27 on October 9 2008

Here is when it reached the users
  • Gentoo 2008.0 released on July 6, 2008 has linux 2.6.24 which was ~5.5 months old.

Distros used by power-users seems to be always running slightly older version compared to the distros aimed at the layman! Yeah, but power users^Wdevelopers use the unstable/development/factory/head version of their favourite distro and not the released stable. But Ubuntu stable(!) is based on debian unstable! And debian stable is so outdated. opensuse seems to be quiet the latest but not straight from the unstable development snapshot.

p.s: I use only opensuse regularly among these distros. So any mis-information and bias is likely. ;)


Anonymous said...

Fedora keeps up to date on the kernel using git snapshots throughout the development phase. After release more recent kernels are regularly issued. So it's rather irrelevant what version is shipped in release. As such F10 already has a newer .27 based kernel than was shipped in release and .29 is positioned to take it's place once it is felt to be stable enough.


In general Fedora does this with all packages.

Nikanth Karthikesan said...

Yes, every distro atleast updates the kernel to the latest stable + fixes + backports.

The above statistics just tells how new/old the kernel was when a distro dishes it to the users.

IOW how soon a distro _thinks_ a newer version of kernel is stable enough for the users. Being the fastest may not be the right thing.

Nikanth Karthikesan said...

Hmm.. I did not get your comment earlier.

Opensuse not only provides the latest linus-git kernel (Vanilla), but also the future kernels (linux-next)from Stephen Rothwell’s linux-next GIT tree ;)

jospoortvliet said...

@nikanth: yes, oS has newer versions (see http://en.opensuse.org/Kernel) but our stable release does not get newer kernels. We don't want to break things that are working and only have bugfixes during our 20 month life cycle.

Our engineers are pretty experienced in back porting bug fixes without breaking things as they have to do that for 10+ years in SLE :D

However, we also have our unique rolling release repository opensuse.org/Tumbleweed which DOES ship the latest kernel. Of course it does, with Greg KH taking care of it :D

So we actually have the best of both worlds. Tumbleweed is more up to date than say Fedora as it ships new kernels quickly; our stable release is more stable than Ubuntu as it doesn't ship new kernels (or other packages) with the risk of breaking things but does have a longer release cycle.

And all that because we use the Open Build Service - without it, doing this is simply VERY hard.