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Concerns Over No PAE Kernel In Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

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  • #31
    Do you want to get rid of Pentium M laptops too, when they are as fast as Atom netbooks but usually even have got a bigger display?

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    • #32
      I think Ubuntu has already made it clear that they are willing to include a community maintained non-PAE kernel in their repositories:
      Originally posted by https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel/2011-November/034399.html
      If there is sufficient community demand (and support), I would be willing to sponsor the first non-PAE kernel upload to Universe.
      So Ubuntu does not intend to drop the kernel completely, as long as the owners of such hardware are sufficiently interested in packaging a kernel for it.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by gremble View Post
        I found the comment "time to upgrade" in the article frankly offensive.
        Same here. As long as the hardware works for the workload you give it, there is no such thing as a "time to upgrade".
        The heavy-handed "time to upgrade" approach from ms with vista is precisely what made me look elsewhere.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by chithanh View Post
          So Ubuntu does not intend to drop the kernel completely, as long as the owners of such hardware are sufficiently interested in packaging a kernel for it.
          And don't care whether their OS kernel has any sort of security updates. But that's usually OK. Little-used utilities like the kernel, which never have any contact with the big bad Internet at large, don't really need security updates.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by PsynoKhi0 View Post
            Same here. As long as the hardware works for the workload you give it, there is no such thing as a "time to upgrade".
            The heavy-handed "time to upgrade" approach from ms with vista is precisely what made me look elsewhere.
            Most people don't need hardware faster than what was out years ago. By the same token, "time to upgrade" equally doesn't apply to the operating system on an older machine.

            While we're at it, in the past 2 months I've tried to install recent Ubuntu OS's on a Pentium IV era Xeon server. Old Intel graphics are really, really borked in recent kernels anyways, but I'd still rather them work on getting new hardware working in the kernel, and let the Pentium IV era folks continue to use Ubuntu 5.04.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by sbergman27 View Post
              And don't care whether their OS kernel has any sort of security updates.
              Sorry to break the news to you, Ubuntu has no security support for most of its packages.

              Given that the codebase for the PAE and non-PAE kernel will likely be the same and only some config options will differ, I don't see how the security situation will be worse.

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              • #37
                Originally posted by Smorg View Post
                People actually run default kernels? Why stress about this stuff when toggling one option and building a kernel takes less time than rebooting. Really, who cares.
                People that don't want to track security vulnerabilities on their own.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by leeenux View Post
                  Really though, who cares? That same Pentium M machine can't do a respectable job of running Windows7/8, OSX, AS400 or anything else, why not just keep Ubuntu 10.04 on there until it finally stops working? I'd rather them devote the resources to making current hardware run correctly.
                  According to that method of thinking, by the time that hardware has proper support, it is no longer current and support must be dropped.

                  Anyway, hopefully some of these people will look at Gentoo. It can continue to support their hardware as long as upstream does and possibly even longer.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by droidhacker View Post
                    If that were the case, then they would be advocating dropping ALL support for 32bit altogether, and forcing 64bit down everyone's throat. As it happens, I have a 32bit intel tablet that does support PAE, so THAT incorrect assumption of yours would force me right out of ubuntu altogether (assuming that I used it, which I don't...)

                    Note that this dropping support for older hardware does happen over time. First the major distros dropped support for i386 (i.e. 80386 chips rather than the use as a general way of saying "32bit"), then i486, then i586 (I actually had an interesting glitch with this... apparently K6's -- including II and III -- are missing a couple of features that are required for "full" compatibility with i686, so an i686 kernel won't run on them), now its time to drop non-PAE. IMO, it is a natural and necessary progression.
                    b
                    Fortunately, there isn't much risk of 32bit PAE being dropped any time soon, since this hardware is still being manufactured and advanced.
                    This is not true. Gentoo still supports i486 processors and I imagine that doing a Gentoo installation on a i386 system is possible (although not supported).

                    Originally posted by sbergman27 View Post
                    And don't care whether their OS kernel has any sort of security updates. But that's usually OK. Little-used utilities like the kernel, which never have any contact with the big bad Internet at large, don't really need security updates.
                    All network traffic is processed by the kernel, including the internet.

                    Originally posted by leeenux View Post
                    Most people don't need hardware faster than what was out years ago. By the same token, "time to upgrade" equally doesn't apply to the operating system on an older machine.

                    While we're at it, in the past 2 months I've tried to install recent Ubuntu OS's on a Pentium IV era Xeon server. Old Intel graphics are really, really borked in recent kernels anyways, but I'd still rather them work on getting new hardware working in the kernel, and let the Pentium IV era folks continue to use Ubuntu 5.04.
                    The issue could have been Canonical's patches to Xorg. Have you tried a less patch-happy distribution like Gentoo or Slackware?

                    Originally posted by chithanh View Post
                    Sorry to break the news to you, Ubuntu has no security support for most of its packages.

                    Given that the codebase for the PAE and non-PAE kernel will likely be the same and only some config options will differ, I don't see how the security situation will be worse.
                    Actually, Ubuntu does a better job at security than other distributions like Debian:

                    http://labs.mwrinfosecurity.com/noti...ry_protection/
                    http://labs.mwrinfosecurity.com/noti...to_the_kernel/

                    Of course, if you want proper security, you are probably better off using Hardened Gentoo.

                    Originally posted by yogi_berra View Post
                    People that don't want to track security vulnerabilities on their own.
                    You can bypass Canonical and go straight to upstream for new kernels. Checkout the sources and compile it. As long as you keep up to date with upstream, you should be fine.

                    Originally posted by leeenux View Post
                    Really though, who cares? That same Pentium M machine can't do a respectable job of running Windows7/8, OSX, AS400 or anything else, why not just keep Ubuntu 10.04 on there until it finally stops working? I'd rather them devote the resources to making current hardware run correctly.
                    According to that method of thinking, by the time that hardware has proper support, it is no longer current and support must be dropped.

                    Anyway, hopefully some of these people will look at Gentoo. It can continue to support their hardware as long as upstream does and possibly even longer.
                    Last edited by Shining Arcanine; 11-10-2011, 10:19 PM.

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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by chithanh View Post
                      Sorry to break the news to you, Ubuntu has no security support for most of its packages.
                      You're trolling. Canonical provides full security support for 18 months on regular releases. 3 Years for desktop packages on LTS releases. And 5 years for nondesktop packages on LTS releases.

                      Compare that to, say, Fedora, where you get a grudging 13 months of security support for all packages and releases. (And if they could cut that they would.)

                      You can optionally install packages from Universe and Multiverse. And they may or may not get security updates. But the alternative would be to install from source. And then you, and you alone, are responsible for dealing with each security update individually.

                      Edit: Oh. I forgot to address your other "point". If you do a custom kernel, you'll need to lock it in the package manager. And then manually monitor for security updates. And do a manual compile and install every time one arises. It's just a bloody pain.
                      Last edited by sbergman27; 11-10-2011, 10:50 PM.

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Shining Arcanine View Post
                        The issue could have been Canonical's patches to Xorg. Have you tried a less patch-happy distribution like Gentoo or Slackware?
                        That's over and done with now, I no longer have a need for that, and the servers are officially e-waste. It was just a project I was working on to try and re-purpose some obsolete hardware.


                        Originally posted by Shining Arcanine View Post
                        According to that method of thinking, by the time that hardware has proper support, it is no longer current and support must be dropped.
                        According to your method of thinking, GPU driver maintainers should have a vast array of 10-20 y/o hardware on hand, tested for every new patch, it's just not realistic. Regressions should be avoided as much as possible, but it's inevitable that older hardware will start to fall by the wayside. Out of the trillions of Pentium M machines that were sold, how many do you reckon are still running? I'd venture to guess not very many, most value-engineered laptops like Dell, etc... tend to crap themselves at about 4-5 years, if not earlier. For those few remaining stragglers, there's older versions of distros, which will probably run better anyways, since Pentium M doesn't have the GPU or CPU grunt to run any fancy new stuff anyways, it barely runs the old stuff.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Shining Arcanine View Post
                          You can bypass Canonical and go straight to upstream for new kernels. Checkout the sources and compile it. As long as you keep up to date with upstream, you should be fine.
                          That is such a massive pain in the ass that it isn't even close to being funny.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by yogi_berra View Post
                            That is such a massive pain in the ass that it isn't even close to being funny.
                            In addition, upstream has been very clear on the point that if you want a well-tested kernel you should go with a vendor-supplied one. The vanilla kernel is deemed to be "good enough" with the expectation that someone with more resources, and a vested interest, will do the "road ready" testing. It's a setup that makes a great deal of sense. Kernel devs are not QA experts.

                            To put it another way, you can drink from the clear spring. But you might end up with diarrhea. Vanilla kernels have not been put under the microscope.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by leeenux View Post
                              Out of the trillions of Pentium M machines that were sold, how many do you reckon are still running? I'd venture to guess not very many, most value-engineered laptops like Dell, etc... tend to crap themselves at about 4-5 years, if not earlier. For those few remaining stragglers, there's older versions of distros, which will probably run better anyways, since Pentium M doesn't have the GPU or CPU grunt to run any fancy new stuff anyways, it barely runs the old stuff.
                              Here at me is a HP laptop with Pentium M from 2005 which still runs fine with Mint 11 based on Ubuntu 11.04. Graphics (Intel 915GM) is working fine with open-source drivers. Compiz runs on it without any problem. I know someone who still has 2 ThinkPad T41's which may even be older. They are still working fine. I have never seen a dead Pentium M laptop.

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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by AlbertP View Post
                                Here at me is a HP laptop with Pentium M from 2005 which still runs fine with Mint 11 based on Ubuntu 11.04. Graphics (Intel 915GM) is working fine with open-source drivers. Compiz runs on it without any problem. I know someone who still has 2 ThinkPad T41's which may even be older. They are still working fine. I have never seen a dead Pentium M laptop.
                                I've never seen a dead VAX 8600, but I'm sure they exist. His point about cheap hardware crapping out sooner than it should is not countered by your experience with different manufacturers.

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