Thursday, August 7, 2008

Ubuntu Kernel Next

Normally in Ubuntu's development cycle, we don't begin work on the kernel for a release until that release opens for development.

We are starting something new this time around. Now that 2.6.26 is released, and the kernel in Intrepid/8.10 (our current development cycle) is pretty stable, we have opened up a new git tree called ubuntu-next. Do not confuse this with linux-next, they are different concepts.

We are not spending a lot of time adding features to this tree. It is basically a rebase of all of our patches on top of the latest kernel in linux-2.6 upstream git. Our patches are consolidated and given some consistency (and a few pushed upstream).

At regular intervals, binary packages of this tree will be made available (usually at -rc milestones from upstream). In fact, the first installment of these are now available at:

I've built them for Hardy/8.04 and Intrepid/8.10. The only difference between Intrepid and Hardy is the compiler, which means your dkms and other third-party module recompiles should work :)

A few points to remember when using these:

  • They are not guaranteed stable, or even to be able to boot. Keep away from small children.

  • These images will not be supplied in a PPA or any other APT type repository. We need a barrier to prevent people from just adding these to their systems wholesale.

  • We will not provide respins of linux-restricted-modules or any other modules package in the Ubuntu archive with these. Headers are provided, so use them if you need to.

  • DO NOT (and I can't say this enough) file bugs on these packages. They will be ignored.

  • DO (and I can't say this enough either) feel free to reproduce your bugs against official kernels with these kernels. It's a good data point to know whether the bug has been fixed by a newer kernel

  • DO NOT (and I will make physical threats on this one) pump these packages into a public APT repo and tell the world so that it is "easier" to use bleeding edge stuff. If folks don't know how to install these packages, they surely don't need to be running them (we wont help them fix things after trying them).

  • DO NOT ask us to put this into Intrepid/8.10 3 weeks before RC just because it makes your mouse stop squeaking whenever a cat is near the computer. Honestly, this kernel isn't going to get the same testing, and we have deadlines for a reason.

Other than that, enjoy.

1 comment: