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Linux 2.6.38 Kernel Released

Linux Kernel

Published on 15 March 2011 10:35 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel
10 Comments

Just as expected, Linus Torvalds released the Linux 2.6.38 kernel over the night. Since the previous Linux 2.6.38-rc8 release there's been some Btrfs file-system updates and other regression fixes throughout, including two fixes for my AMD Fusion Linux problems. Over the Linux 2.6.37 kernel, there's a lot to be found and to enjoy about this new kernel.

In the 2.6.38 release announcement Torvalds shares some of his favorite work in this new kernel. "As to the "big picture", ie all the changes since 2.6.37, my personal favorite remains the VFS name lookup changes. They did end up causing some breakage, and Al has made it clear that he wants more cleanups, but on the whole I think it was surprisingly smooth. I think we had more problems with random other components (nasty memory corruption in networking etc) than with the rather fundamental path lookup change."

The Linux 2.6.38 kernel carries AMD Radeon HD 6000 series Linux open-source support, Fusion Linux support, Radeon KMS page-flipping (a huge performance win!), Nouveau GeForce 400 / 500 acceleration support (still requires external non-free firmware), and many other open-source graphics improvements.

Beyond the graphics, there is the kernel patch that does wonders, other low-level improvements, Btrfs LZO compression, transparent huge pages, new drivers, and much more. Some of the other Linux 2.6.38 changes that fall outside of our main focus at Phoronix are talked about at KernelNewbies.org.

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