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Linux 5.16-rc5 Released - Cycle To Be Extended Due To The Holidays
Torvalds noted in this evening's release announcement, "So everything looks fairly normal. This rc5 is perhaps a bit bigger than usual, but it's not like it's breaking any records. I blame people trying to get stuff done before the holidays, and/or just random timing effects. Anyway, I do expect things to calm down over the next couple of weeks, but we'll see. As to rc5, the patch is dominated by drivers (network, sound, hid, rdma, usb... and a lot of other random things) and selftest updates (bpf, kvm and networking). The rest is fairly random - filesystems (cifs, btrfs, tracefs), core kernel and networking. Some fixups to the new damon virtual address space monitoring code."
In the 5.16-rc5 announcement he went on to note that while things are pacing well, he will be extending the cycle by an extra week. Linux 5.16 should be ready for release around year's end, but with many developers taking time off due to Christmas and end of year festivities, it results in less development work as well as testing. Thus he proactively is announcing the extension of the Linux 5.16 cycle to avoid causing conflict with the opening of the Linux 5.17 merge window.
Linux 5.16 will be out in early January and is introducing many new features and improvements. Linux 5.16 is shaping up well overall aside from the x86 cluster-aware scheduling changes still pending so this functionality doesn't get enabled by default for Alder Lake to address that performance regression. Aside from that things are panning out well and I will continue my daily Linux testing through the holidays and new year.