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Linus Announces the 2.6.25 Linux Kernel

Zonk posted about 6 years ago | from the those-servers-need-a-workout dept.

Linux 181

LinuxWatch writes "'It's been long promised, but there it is now,' began Linux creator Linus Torvalds, announcing the 2.6.25 Linux kernel. He continued, 'special thanks to Ingo who found and fixed a nasty-looking regression that turned out to not be a regression at all, but an old bug that just had not been triggering as reliably before. That said, that was just the last particular regression fix I was holding things up for, and it's not like there weren't a lot of other fixes too, they just didn't end up being the final things that triggered my particular worries.' There were numerous changes in this revision of the OS. The origins of some of those fixes is detailed in Heise's brief history of this kernel update."

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181 comments

Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (4, Funny)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | about 6 years ago | (#23102762)

Great. Now that the engine is all fixed, can we get a decent looking chassis with working accessories?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (5, Insightful)

Spleen (9387) | about 6 years ago | (#23102812)

Sorry we only make engines and provide them to all the major manufacturers. Please speak with them about the accessory packages.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0, Troll)

jellomizer (103300) | about 6 years ago | (#23102914)

Still it is their responsibility to create an engine that is small and powerful enough to fit in those chasies. However I would suggest that they would put their focus on the X11/XFree developers for faster, better and stable Graphics and Drivers. My history with Linux has the problem not being with the Linux Kernel but with the X Windows System (Xwindows is big and clunky to support features that we don't fully utilize and are fully utilizeing them less and less). I think Linux needs to seporate from its Unix haritage and start moving away from X11 and to something a bit more direct with the frame buffer and video card (Much like how OS X has). Granted X11 has improved in the areas of 3d acceleration and such. But compared to OS X it is lacking

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (2, Interesting)

megabyte405 (608258) | about 6 years ago | (#23103030)

That's not really a Linux thing - look at Debian, you've got two kernels there and effectively the same userspace. Now, if you say you want everyone to stop using X, you'd probably need to implement some sort of direct rendering on the next level up, which is going to be your toolkit stuff (GDK/Cairo/GTK+ or the QT equiv, for most apps) You have now just bisected your GUI application compatibility.

I'm not sure that X11 is so lacking anymore - the recent versions have been making some nice improvements, and it's still the only thing with that high of compatibility.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103108)

I think Linux needs to seporate from its Unix haritage and start moving away from X11 and to something a bit more direct with the frame buffer and video card (Much like how OS X has).
Sounds good! Now show me the code.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

erc (38443) | about 6 years ago | (#23104856)

Lots of alternatives to choose from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windowing_system [wikipedia.org]

And thank you for posting your snarky comment before doing 30 seconds worth of research.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

LarsG (31008) | about 6 years ago | (#23105740)

Lots of alternatives to choose from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windowing_system [wikipedia.org]

And thank you for posting your snarky comment before doing 30 seconds worth of research.
Pretty much all the alternatives listed are dead or dying, so pot kettle black on the amount of research done.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (5, Insightful)

Simon Brooke (45012) | about 6 years ago | (#23103128)

My history with Linux has the problem not being with the Linux Kernel but with the X Windows System (Xwindows is big and clunky to support features that we don't fully utilize and are fully utilizeing them less and less). I think Linux needs to seporate from its Unix haritage and start moving away from X11 and to something a bit more direct with the frame buffer and video card (Much like how OS X has). Granted X11 has improved in the areas of 3d acceleration and such. But compared to OS X it is lacking

And that has precisely what to do with the kernel? X is in user space. If you want to replace X with any other windowing system you like, just port it or write it. And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (5, Interesting)

bytesex (112972) | about 6 years ago | (#23103464)

I'm no proponent of the GP, but there *is* a 'third way', if you will - expand the X-library so that a) local connections don't necessarily use a protocol over a pipe, but make function-calls instead, and b) implement widgets in the X-client library much more detailed than the current window- and image-primitives; say a basic set of menu-bar, scrollbar, list, tabs etc. All pluggable in the X-server, of course, so that everybody can still 'skin' their desktop according to their taste. c) Do away - finally - with the silly ways that cut-n-paste and drag-n-drop, in short, IPC and buffers, have been implemented in X. Invent a serious way to communicate between X clients, not a tag-along.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103630)

And how do those function calls get to the X server? RPC works over TCP/IP as well, you know.

The X server is a separate process. To talk to it, some sort of IPC must be established. That currently means a socket, pipe, or shared memory. In Unix, a pipe is about the same thing as a local socket anyway, and shared memory can be used already.

So I don't understand, what are you proposing?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 6 years ago | (#23105878)

We don't need remote X Windows applications as much as we did before.
New applications are designed Web Based so anyone can use them depending on their OS and default configurations and setting.

Most people who use XWindows don't use it over TCP/IP anymore. (Yes I will probable get comments from a bunch of Slashdot users say Yea I Do it is great...) But for normal use it is between the Computer and the Monitor.

We have better and more effecent ways of comunicating the data then Xwindows ofers.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (4, Insightful)

Abcd1234 (188840) | about 6 years ago | (#23106478)

Well, you go run some benchmarks and prove that there's a big win to be had by moving to a non-IPC based model of communication. A significant rewrite like that requires some serious numbers to back it up, and so far, all you've provided is anecdotes and gutfeel, and my friend, that ain't enough.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105988)

Shared memory sounds good. IRIX uses it with Xsgi as an alternative transport for local connections, and it significantly speeds up clients that use lots of small requests, like motif applications with thousands of widgets and x-resources.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (2, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 years ago | (#23105106)

expand the X-library so that a) local connections don't necessarily use a protocol over a pipe, but make function-calls instead

What you are asking for would add substantial complexity to the codebase. Right now things are simple because X messages are just that, messages; it doesn't matter if they're carried over TCP/IP or a Unix Domain Socket. That's a feature. As computers get more powerful, message passing becomes more commonplace for convenience's sake. There ARE other GUIs available for Unix, especially on Linux where there's a kernel gui package. Perhaps one of those solutions would better be suited to your needs?

implement widgets in the X-client library much more detailed than the current window- and image-primitives; say a basic set of menu-bar, scrollbar, list, tabs etc. All pluggable in the X-server, of course

We have that already. It's called GTK+ or Qt or WxWidgets. Why should they be directly in X?

Do away - finally - with the silly ways that cut-n-paste and drag-n-drop, in short, IPC and buffers, have been implemented in X. Invent a serious way to communicate between X clients, not a tag-along.

My understanding is that this existed in both GNOME and KDE.

It seems to me like you're repeating a frequent and misguided call for overcomplication of X11, which is already quite complicated enough, thank you.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (2, Insightful)

Junta (36770) | about 6 years ago | (#23105554)

I will say I agree with you on the message passing situation, it doesn't seem to be a significant penalty (I can still get Windows or better frames per second in 3d games, for example).

We have that already. It's called GTK+ or Qt or WxWidgets. Why should they be directly in X?
While I in part agree with your sentiment, I will say that richer X primitives would mean better default remote performance. Instead of 'here are *all* of the x primitives required to draw a GTK button with the word Cancel on it', which is a not insignificant number, it could say 'draw Cancel button' and cut down on network performance requirements for good remote X. Keeping to a cross-platform API, but with the X implementations of the backend implemented as X extensions may have some value in remote usage scenarios.

I also agree with you on the sentiment of xdnd and cut and paste. As a user, I'm not seeing the problem. The only user issue I see is that the middle click paste sometimes confuses people, but I'd hate to see that go away. Nothing about that could be called an issue with the architecture regardless of the opinion.

X gets a lot of power from having abstractions that can be remote agnostic. I think the implementations have done a sufficient job of providing short-path optimizations for the local case without sacrificing the fundamental remote functionality. I think X's task of taking the network architecture and doing it locally fast has produced a smoother experience than the platforms that have had to do the opposite, and try to make their GUI cleanly remotely usable.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about 6 years ago | (#23103934)

And that has precisely what to do with the kernel? X is in user space. If you want to replace X with any other windowing system you like, just port it or write it. And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.
Userspace and kernelspace are developer-speak, not something the average user really has to know. Users divide the world in to the operating system and applications, and since X isn't an application it's part of "the system" and goes into one big pile. Paricularly since the line has become very blurred, not only is X in userspace, but drivers are in userspace (all high-level USB drivers, for example) or filesystems (FUSE) and so on. It's fairly valid to point out that often problems with "Linux the system" isn't a problem with "Linux the kernel" but rather everything around. For example, USB support in the kernel is done but there's plenty work left on USB device support...

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

johanwanderer (1078391) | about 6 years ago | (#23105390)

Most of *our* server boxes don't have X on them, so it is a good distinction.

Just because there is a lot of effords in the kernel space, that doesn't mean that there isn't effords on the usability of Linux. Look at Ubuntu for example.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105582)

You could say that you care whether it's the General Surgeon's job to fix your hospital bill, but he's still gonna shrug his shoulders and not give a damn.

There's 2 stories on the front page regarding desktop linux, and more come along just about every other day. Actual technical kernel stories are rare, so it'd be nice to discuss, you know, what the article is actually about.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (2, Interesting)

Burz (138833) | about 6 years ago | (#23106266)

You have just articulated the major perceptual obstacle to Linux developers' ability to grasp the desktop. They refuse to draw a neat line between "system" and "applications" and then promote and support that set of interfaces, so there is no consistent platform that facilitates independent distribution of applications to end-users.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23106770)

And that has precisely what to do with the kernel? X is in user space. If you want to replace X with any other windowing system you like, just port it or write it. And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.
Userspace and kernelspace are developer-speak, not something the average user really has to know. Users divide the world in to the operating system and applications, and since X isn't an application it's part of "the system" and goes into one big pile. Paricularly since the line has become very blurred, not only is X in userspace, but drivers are in userspace (all high-level USB drivers, for example) or filesystems (FUSE) and so on. It's fairly valid to point out that often problems with "Linux the system" isn't a problem with "Linux the kernel" but rather everything around. For example, USB support in the kernel is done but there's plenty work left on USB device support...
Fully agree! The other discussion on Linux coming of age for mass market with Ubuntu (http://techwatch.reviewk.com/2008/04/ubuntu-hardy-heron-ready-for-the-masses/) was precisely around your thoughts. Linux devs are so geeky (or like to pretend to be so), that they love to throw all jargons around. Have you heard MS or Mac talk like that? They just make products that appeal to end users. And that is why they make money.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (4, Funny)

at_slashdot (674436) | about 6 years ago | (#23104836)

When you've written something as powerful and stable as Windows Vista, come back and tell us about it :)

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

canuck57 (662392) | about 6 years ago | (#23105022)

And that has precisely what to do with the kernel? X is in user space. If you want to replace X with any other windowing system you like, just port it or write it. And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.

Extremely well put.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | about 6 years ago | (#23105394)

And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.
With focus on the stable side of that particular equation.

I've seen lots of X alternatives. You seem to either get stability lacking features/flexibility (QT Embedded or GTK+ Direct FB) or something more feature complete, but utterly lacking in stability (Xynth) or development has completely halted (Fresco)

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 6 years ago | (#23105764)

Well there is a theory in kernel Design that the Kernel should handle all the Input and Output of the system. Xwindows bypasses a lot of the kernel with its own display drivers and such. As well if Xwindows crashes sometimes it is just as bad if the kernel crashed. Locking all user interfaces (including remote connections (at least this has happened to me on a couple of occasions)).

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23106590)

My history with Linux has the problem not being with the Linux Kernel but with the X Windows System (Xwindows is big and clunky to support features that we don't fully utilize and are fully utilizeing them less and less). I think Linux needs to seporate from its Unix haritage and start moving away from X11 and to something a bit more direct with the frame buffer and video card (Much like how OS X has). Granted X11 has improved in the areas of 3d acceleration and such. But compared to OS X it is lacking

And that has precisely what to do with the kernel? X is in user space. If you want to replace X with any other windowing system you like, just port it or write it. And when you've written something as powerful and stable as the X Window System, come back and tell us about it.

X Window System sucks. Looks ancient. Clumsy and clunky. Is overweight. Give me something even close to what MS and Mac has been doing for donkey's years!

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

Sir Homer (549339) | about 6 years ago | (#23104878)

Actually with X11 DRI, most of the heavy lifting is done in kernel space anyways. X11 basically gives you the advantages true network transparency and performance in one. It's really an excellent and well thought out windowing system, arguably better then OS X Aqua or Windows. Not saying it's perfect, but most idea "inspirations" would actually be regressions.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

Burz (138833) | about 6 years ago | (#23103264)

Typical... you omitted the part about the chasis. That is considered an 'accessory' by you?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (-1, Redundant)

woof69 (952829) | about 6 years ago | (#23102814)

but dose it run Linux?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (2, Insightful)

PeterKraus (1244558) | about 6 years ago | (#23105846)

Honestly, how can someone make a typo in 4 word long sentence when the preview is MANDATORY?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 6 years ago | (#23102958)

TiVo is pretty. Google is pretty (well, some people think so). Slashdot is pretty.

Oh right, you meant things like Ubuntu. Complain to them about it.

Behold! Thus sayeth Linus! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103112)

And a collective orgasm was released from the entire Lunix community.

Re:Behold! Thus sayeth Linus! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104450)

And a collective orgasm was released from the entire Lunix community.

Shit, you got any tissues?

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | about 6 years ago | (#23103260)

Install Ubuntu. Works great, 3-D effects on the desktop. Does everything that most people need. The only stupid pet tricks are the ones that you need to do to get DVDs to play. Thanks DMCA for that one. Other than that I find it as user friendly as WindowsXP and it seems a lot faster.

BTW I work with at a software company that writes software that runs under Windows. Even the most pro windows drone here has fallen back to "I am sure Microsoft will fix it soon". Don't bother with the it works just fine for me stories. I can put you in touch with people that have had no problems with 98 and ME and are still using them.

Vista is a major pain with no gain.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103358)

yes, once I get video support, then I've got to get my card reader working, my presentation pointer, and my wifi adapter. After that is all done, it'll be just as functional as XP.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103472)

That's what you get for buying windows-only hardware. My HP laptop almost completely works, although I'm having trouble with sleep states which is no biggie.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103812)

response 1 - yeah, I've got an HP dv5000. It isn't like it is an obscure hardware company.

response 2 - If my laptop isn't supported by linux (any distro), then linux sucks! (in relation to my laptop). Osx doesn't work on my laptop either - but I can get more of my hardware features functioning in it!

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (5, Insightful)

beav007 (746004) | about 6 years ago | (#23104214)

If my laptop isn't supported by linux (any distro), then linux sucks!
Wrong. If your hardware manufacturer doesn't release decent drivers for Linux, the manufacturer sucks*.

Linux devs are working their asses off in their parents basements, hacking and testing drivers for hardware that they don't have access to the interface specifications for. If things still look a little shakey, just remember to be glad that they work at all, given the hours of work for $0 return.

When you are done giving thanks, complain to your hardware manufacturer, who does make money from the deal, and does have the full specifications - AND for reasons unknown, have turned down the offer of OSS developers writing the drivers for them, for free [slashdot.org] .




*See also: Canon

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105638)

I am in the same boat as the previous AC. About the only thing on the board that isnt Intel is the card reader (which does work flawlessly). Intel has TONS of specs out there for their stuff. The dv5xxx and dv6xxx series of laptops are not exactly 'cutting edge' laptops and are practicaly Intel/AMD reference boards. Some of the parts have been out for more than 3 years. Yet 3d is a nightmare on it (doesnt work and zbuffer doesnt work) and wifi setup is a joke. The rest of it works pretty good.

You are yelling at him for something that is not true. He is not exactly using a company that is a microsoft shil either, HP.

The 0$ bit is why I am mostly understanding of what is going on. However for now Linux on this laptop is a non starter and will be for at least another 6-12 months. When I will re again evaluate the situation.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23106244)

If linux doesn't work for me, then ... for me it sucks. Plain and simple.

If my way of thinking doesn't work for you, then it sucks for you.

*If* it worked for me, I'd be grateful for their long hours of hard work (for no compensation).. but it doesn't work for me, so what should I be grateful for? People doing work that doesn't effect me in any way, shape or form?

Why would they even bother? (0, Troll)

Burz (138833) | about 6 years ago | (#23106744)

If a shopper wants to choose between 3 wifi cards, do the Linux developers bother to tell the shopper quickly and concisely which of those will work??

The community of coders, sysadmins and other techies aren't even interested in TELLING Linux novices that an "Acme Inc" device is supported! So OEMs see little actual need for compatibility being expressed. No comprehensive and authoritative Hardware Compatibility List = no market pressure.

If Linus had one hairsbreadth of concern for a users' ability to discern compatibility while contemplating hardware purchases, then his group would have setup an HCL years ago. But instead he leaves that horrid little task of dealing with the unwashed to the distros, who produce pathetic nearly-empty HCL databases with some of the most unpleasant web-search design imaginable.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104500)

Clearly a troll as my year old Ubuntu picked up my USB card reader without an issue, and X will work in basic VESA mode at the worst.
Presentation pointer? You mean a clicker?
WiFi adaptor - many are supported under Linux, some are more cranky, but Linux wireless is rather cranky anyway due to major design flaws initially leading to the mess of iwconfig et al. FreeBSD got it right straight up, in ifconfig.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | about 6 years ago | (#23104924)

Since Intel, nVidia, and ATI all have good support under Linux just what video card are you using?
Card reader? Mine works fine and so does everyone that I have seen. All of the ones I have seen look like a USB mass storage device.
WiFi adapter? I have heard that they can be a problem but I have not had any issues. Intel's just work.
If they don't contact the manufacture and ask them for the drivers.
If they don't offer them then well you picked hardware that doesn't support Linux.
Kind of like those people that have printers and other devices that don't work with Vista...

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1, Troll)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | about 6 years ago | (#23106402)

so if I had windows, I'd complain about not having the support of microsoft. but since I'm trying linux, I get told to buy new hardware.

That sounds like a nice double standard from the linux crowd.

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104422)

Vista is a major pain with no gain
It is. I have narrowed it down to what the 'slow' bits are.

Aero, you better have a 'decent' video card for this or else it 'seems' slower. I leave it on as I am not doing anything major with the laptop it came on. Plus I like the 'pretty'. Turned it off went back to on.

SystemIndexer, the more I look into it the less I like it. The 'instant search' is nice, however it is a system PIG. It totaly hoses down your NTFS partition with little fragments in the user journal (which you can not defragment at all) and in the 2+ gig of index files you will end up with (which luckely you can defragment). Then it fragments the hell out of the 'empty' space left on your computer. This has the nice effect of making other programs fragment their data too. So it just gets worse and worse. The built in defragmenter only defragments files, it doesnt defragment free space (which would keep files from fragmenting in the first place...). No wonder MS is pushing for SSD hybrid. I had close to 18k in file fragments and 18k in free space fragments until I gave up and used a third party defragmenter. Will probably be off in the next couple of weeks.

WindowsDefender, nice idea other then the fact is continously scanning your badly fragmented harddrive. It was a pig in XP and still is. Off and disabled.

Windows prefetch, another nice idea. The problem is however that it is SUPER aggressive. Oh you just released 200 meg let me fill that in with 200 meg of DLLs you 'might' use. This destroys battery life as it swaps in tons of stuff from disk. I have been using it for 6months now. It has 'settled' down a bit, as in not as bad as at first. But it still does it a LOT. Toying with off still on for now.

The User acess control, good idea. Ive actually grown to like it. It reminds me 'hey your about to do something stupid'. The thing I dont like about it is the half ass way it was done. You are clearly in a 'control panel' kind of thing but prompts you half way thru what you are doing to prompt you. It would have been less painful if it was UP FRONT. Probably will leave on.

"I am sure Microsoft will fix it soon"
No they will not. They are busy working on '7'. Vista will be hushed up and quickly burried next to MS Bob.

Install Ubuntu
I have, works like crap with my laptop intel video card. Wireless doesnt work without help from God himself. Everything else a solid Linux distro (and I have been thru a few and keep going back to slack).

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (4, Funny)

db32 (862117) | about 6 years ago | (#23104318)

Right, and when you convince professional racers to give up their finely tuned gear shifters in favor of a stick shift with a chrome skull and glowing eyes you let us all know.

I truely don't understand this mentality of making everything stupid user friendly. Once upon a time you actually had to know a little bit about the tools you were using to make them work. Now instead of creating powerful tools that require some understanding we want to replace them all with stupid proof crippleware? And people wonder why well over 90% of all email on the internet is spam. People wonder why Windows infection rates are so high (aside from the security holes allowing the stupid user tricks, the stupid user still clicks on everything presented).

In this I propose that we place large concrete barriers along every major highway and paint tunnels on them with overhead messages like "Do you want a bigger penis? Drive here!" or "Get rich in this tunnel!" and maybe even "Protect your car from theives, enter here!"

Re:Wonderful. More Stable. ... So? (1)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | about 6 years ago | (#23106322)

If i want a race car, I buy a race car.

If I want a machine that just works, I buy a pc (or a mac, if I don't want to play any games on it).

If I want to join the linux fan club, then I'd install linux. The point was ... GREAT - it has a good motor. But good engineering isn't the key to making a good product - there are a lot more variables that go into it.

Sure, bad engineering would cripple a product. But good engineering alone doesn't cut it. It has to be paired with accessibility.

I like that one (2, Funny)

jackharrer (972403) | about 6 years ago | (#23102872)

Running a pre-release of Fedora 9 on his wife's computer, Linus Torvalds was not able to view YouTube videos with Swfdec, leading him to send a comical error report in which he makes an ardent appeal for help to Fedora developers, "This is 'high' priority because the wife will kill me if she doesn't have her videos."

LOLZ ;)

Re:I like that one (4, Funny)

Arancaytar (966377) | about 6 years ago | (#23102902)

Dear Linus,
From all of us here at the Fedora Project we just wanted you to know we're very
pleased you're testing Fedora 9 and filing bugs. We also wanted to let you know
that we're never gonna give up fixing these bugs.We know when we do our best
we're never gonna let our users down. Sometimes it may feel like it but we're
never gonna give you the run around on these bugs, either. We don't want to
desert you nor you to desert us.

As frustrating as they are we hope we're never gonna make you cry.

Sincerely,
Seth Vidal
Fedora Project Board Member.

Re:I like that one (2, Funny)

superash (1045796) | about 6 years ago | (#23103572)

I like the reply to the above comment :



The Board wishes it to be known that:
1. Mr. Vidal has, in the parlance of second-rate spy movies, "gone rogue," and has posted on behalf of the Board without the required routing through several committees, endless cross-posted discussion, and explicit approval, and therefore his pay will be docked accordingly.
2. He is clearly an enormous Rick Astley fan, although he attempts to disguisse this fact through paraphrase.
3. We love you, Linus! *scream*
4. We wish for Mrs. Torvalds not to visit pain upon us, and thus thank our community for stepping in and helping Linus get this bug handled.
5. Because it's Friday, things may get a little silly around here. Oh, and mind the gap.
Paul W. Frields Fedora Project Leader

swfdec? I'm still back in the XFree86 3.3.3 days (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23107648)

Dude, and I can get videos off JewTube all the time like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEYot8voTDM [youtube.com] comedy of a Linux user talking with a Vista and OSX.

Geez, Torvalds should stop worrying on the future and more on the past: look at what he could be doing back here, in real time, as opposed to what doesn't exist now for to do in the future. Don't go by what that Disney mule says about "the future is arrived" and "the future is now" because we should let the things of tomorrow think for themselves, so lets work and ponder on improving what has already been done. Still no QuickBooks client on Linux. Still, Linux has no improvements on binary compatibility of software, or ELF and STATIC binary integration.

Get back to work!

Re:I like that one (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | about 6 years ago | (#23103078)

The entire bug report is fairly epic:

I didn't try a lot of videos, but I couldn't find a single one that actually
worked. And what's the internet without the rick-roll?

Expected results:Rick Astley in all his glory!
Surprised he on any distro as hes probably systematically slagged them all of but i suppose that's the way flame wars go.

Re:I like that one (2, Funny)

hey! (33014) | about 6 years ago | (#23105076)

Dear Mr. Torvalds

We appreciate your submission of a bug report for swfdec, and we have submitted it to the maintainers. However we are unable at this point to assign it "high" priority because it appears to be an interaction of a buggy ACPI BIOS with the Intel HDA audio codecs. We refer you to Toshiba for support details.

In the meantime, you may not be aware that the traditional SYSV "inittab" mechanism has been replaced in recent editions of Fedora with the newer "upstart" mechanism. Simply edit the "/etc/event.d/linus" file, specifying that under the appropriate runlevels you should be automatically respawned. This should effectively prevent you from being killed. At least permanently so.

-The Fedora Support Team

Wow, all those bugs (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105590)

It's a shame they couldn't have been bothered to code it properly in the first place. Then they might not have to make another point-release every three months.

A better link to the post is... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23102880)

http://kerneltrap.org/

Re:A better link to the post is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103450)

Thank you! I hate it when people fail to hyperlink properly. The author linked the word "announcing" to kernel.org which has no such announcement. I'm interested in the announcement, not the source code.

Black monolith (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23102928)

Ok, so is it still a big monolithic kernel that we need to recompile every time we need to load a driver into kernel-space?

Re:Black monolith (5, Funny)

Doc Nielsen (880993) | about 6 years ago | (#23102966)

no no they invented this new thing called modules, which you can load and unload. It's really neat! ;D

Re:Black monolith (1)

tomtomtom777 (1148633) | about 6 years ago | (#23103038)

every time we need to load a driver into kernel-space

"Every time" as in .... ? Most of us don't load drivers into kernel space on a yearly basis. Correct me if I'm wrong but this sounds like a terrible argument against a monolithic kernel.

Re:Black monolith (5, Funny)

X.25 (255792) | about 6 years ago | (#23103902)

Ok, so is it still a big monolithic kernel that we need to recompile every time we need to load a driver into kernel-space?

You're the proof that time travel is possible.

What does this mean for the Desktop? (1)

bogaboga (793279) | about 6 years ago | (#23103060)

What does this kernel mean for the desktop? Does it for example allow me to use my Hauppauge PVR-150 remote control by default, just like the present kernel does for the TV card itself ?

Under the kernel for Mythbuntu 7.10, that getting that remote control to work is next to impossible...even after tinkering with all sorts of text configuration files. To cut it short, getting the remote control to work was an exercise in frustration.

If this kernel fixes this, I will be happy.

Re:What does this mean for the Desktop? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103150)

No this is Linux did't you get the memo you have to be a rocket scientist to get something off the wall to work with it. This is because the vendor does not support linux because it is free and the vendor feels that linux is not a desktop, personal computer PC. However slashdot disagrees. It is sort of like getting all the child molesters in one room and they all decide that child molesting should not be a crime. Since the group of child molesters say it is not a crime it must be true! The same can be said about linux and slashdot.

Re:What does this mean for the Desktop? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103228)

Me no understand. Car analogy pleeze.

Re:What does this mean for the Desktop? (1)

ozmanjusri (601766) | about 6 years ago | (#23104028)

If this kernel fixes this, I will be happy.

Why on earth would you think the kernel would fix a remote control?

The program which MythTV uses for remote controls is called "lirc". You didn't say which version of the PVR-150 remote you have, but it sounds like the MCE version (which was tailored to the Microsoft MCE OS).

Google for whichever version of remote you have and lirc, and there'll be a dozen howtos to help you.

Trust me! (1)

bogaboga (793279) | about 6 years ago | (#23104618)

When it comes to the remote control, I tried. Trust me. It just did not work. I know about lirc. I tinkered all I could but it did not work! There is community support for the WinTV-PVR-150 at http://ivtvdriver.org/ [ivtvdriver.org] and I can tell you that it did not work for me. By the way, I am no Linux newbie but I must admit I failed on this.

Almost slashdotted: copy of important stuff below (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103106)

Direct link to Linus' 2.6.25 announcement message [lkml.org]

Also kernelnewbies.org seems to be very slow at the moment. Here is a copy of the important changes section from their 2.6.25 changelog page:

1.1. Memory Resource Controller

Recommended LWN article (somewhat outdated, but still interesting): "Controlling memory use in containers"

The memory resource controller is a cgroups-based feature. Cgroups, aka "Control Groups", is a feature that was merged in 2.6.24, and its purpose is to be a generic framework where several "resource controllers" can plug in and manage different resources of the system such as process scheduling or memory allocation. It also offers a unified user interface, based on a virtual filesystem where administrators can assign arbitrary resource constraints to a group of chosen tasks. For example, in 2.6.24 they merged two resource controllers: Cpusets and Group Scheduling. The first allows to bind CPU and Memory nodes to the arbitrarily chosen group of tasks, aka cgroup, and the second allows to bind a CPU bandwidth policy to the cgroup.

The memory resource controller isolates the memory behavior of a group of tasks -cgroup- from the rest of the system. It can be used to:

        * Isolate an application or a group of applications. Memory hungry applications can be isolated and limited to a smaller amount of memory.
        * Create a cgroup with limited amount of memory, this can be used as a good alternative to booting with mem=XXXX.
        * Virtualization solutions can control the amount of memory they want to assign to a virtual machine instance.
        * A CD/DVD burner could control the amount of memory used by the rest of the system to ensure that burning does not fail due to lack of available memory.

The configuration interface, like all the cgroups, is done by mounting the cgroup filesystem with the "-o memory" option, creating a randomly-named directory (the cgroup), adding tasks to the cgroup by catting its PID to the 'task' file inside the cgroup directory, and writing values to the following files: 'memory.limit_in_bytes', 'memory.usage_in_bytes' (memory statistic for the cgroup), 'memory.stats' (more statistics: RSS, caches, inactive/active pages), 'memory.failcnt' (number of times that the cgroup exceeded the limit), and 'mem_control_type'. OOM conditions are also handled in a per-cgroup manner: when the tasks in the cgroup surpass the limits, OOM will be called to kill a task between all the tasks involved in that specific cgroup.

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)

1.2. Real Time Group scheduling

Group scheduling is a feature introduced in 2.6.24. It allows to assign different process scheduling priorities other than nice levels. For example, given two users on a system, you may want to to assign 50% of CPU time to each one, regardless of how many processes is running each one (traditionally, if one user is running f.e. 10 cpu-bound processes and the other user only 1, this last user would get starved its CPU time), this is the "group tasks by user id" configuration option of Group Scheduling does. You may also want to create arbitrary groups of tasks and give them CPU time privileges, this is what the "group tasks by Control Groups" option does, basing its configuration interface in cgroups (feature introduced in 2.6.24 and described in the "Memory resource controller" section).

Those are the two working modes of Control Groups. Aditionally there're several types of tasks. What 2.6.25 adds to Group Scheduling is the ability to also handle real time (aka SCHED_RT) processes. This makes much easier to handle RT tasks and give them scheduling guarantees.

Documentation: sched-rt-group.txt

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4)

There's serious interest in running RT tasks on enterprise-class hardware, so a large number of enhancements to the RT scheduling class and load-balancer have been merged to provide optimum behaviour for RT tasks.

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

1.3. RCU Preemption support

Recommended LWN article: "The design of preemptible read-copy-update"

RCU is a very powerful locking scheme used in Linux to scale to very large number of CPUs on a single system. However, it wasn't well suited for low latency,RT-ish workloads, and some parts could cause high latency. In 2.6.25, RCU can be preempted, eliminating that source of latencies and making Linux a bit more RT-ish.

Code: (commit 1, 2)

1.4. FIFO ticket spinlocks in x86

Recommended LWN article: "Ticket spinlocks"

In certain workloads, spinlocks can be unfair, ie: a process spinning on a spinlock can be starved up to 1,000,000 times. Usually starvation in spinlocks is not a problem, and it was thougt that it was not too important because such spinlock would become a performance problem before any starvation is noticed, but testing has showed the contrary. And it's always possible to find an obscure corner case that will generate a lot of contention on some lock, and the processor that will grab the lock does it randomly.

With the new spinlocks, the processes grab the spinlock in FIFO order, ensuring fairness (and more importantly, guaranteeing to some point the

Spinlocks configured to run on machines with more than 255 CPUs will use a 32-bit value, and 16 bits when the number of CPUs is smaller (as a bonus, the maximum theorical limit of CPUs that spinlocks can support is raised up to 65536 processors)

Code: (commit 1, 2)

1.5. Better process memory usage measurement

Recommended LWN article: "How much memory are applications really using?"

Measuring how much memory processes are using is more difficult than it looks, specially when processes are sharing the memory used. Features like /proc/$PID/smaps (added in 2.6.14) help, but it has not been enough. 2.6.25 adds new statistics to make this task easier. A new /proc/$PID/pagemaps file is added for each process. In this file the kernel exports (in binary format) the physical page localization for each page used by the process. Comparing this file with the files of other processes allows to know what pages they are sharing. Another file, /proc/kpagemaps, exposes another kind of statistics about the pages of the system. The author of the patch, Matt Mackall, proposes two new statistic metrics: "proportional set size" (PSS) - divide each shared page by the number of processes sharing it; and "unique set size" (USS) (counting of pages not shared). The first statistic, PSS, has also been added to each file in /proc/$PID/smaps. In this HG repository you can find some sample command line and graphic tools that exploits all those statistics.

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4)

1.6. timerfd() syscall

timerfd() is a feature that got merged in 2.6.22 but was disabled due to late complaints about the syscall interface. Its purpose is to extend the timer event notifications to something else than signals, because doing such things with signals is hard. poll()/epoll() only covers file descriptors, so the options were a BSDish kevent-like subsystem or delivering time notifications via a file descriptor, so that poll/epoll could handle them.

There were implementations for both approachs, but the cleaner and more "unixy" design of the file descriptor approach won. In 2.6.25, a revised API has been finally introduced. The API can be found in this LWN article

Code: (commit)

1.7. SMACK, Simplified Mandatory Access Control

Recommended LWN article: "Smack for simplified access control"

The most used MAC solution in Linux is SELinux, a very powerful security framework. SMACK is an alternative MAC framework, not so powerful as SELinux but simpler to use and configure. Linux is all about flexibility, and in the same way it has several filesystems, this alternative security framework doesn't pretends to reemplaze SELinux, it's just an alternative for those who find it more suited to its needs.

From the LWN article: Like SELinux, Smack implements Mandatory Access Control (MAC), but it purposely leaves out the role based access control and type enforcement that are major parts of SELinux. Smack is geared towards solving smaller security problems than SELinux, requiring much less configuration and very little application support.

Code: (commit)

1.8. Latencytop

Recommended LWN article: "Finding system latency with LatencyTOP"

Slow servers, Skipping audio, Jerky video - everyone knows the symptoms of latency. But to know what's really going on in the system, what's causing the latency, and how to fix it... those are difficult questions without good answers right now. LatencyTOP is a Linux tool for software developers (both kernel and userspace), aimed at identifying where system latency occurs, and what kind of operation/action is causing the latency to happen. By identifying this, developers can then change the code to avoid the worst latency hiccups.

There are many types and causes of latency, and LatencyTOP focus on type that causes audio skipping and desktop stutters. Specifically, LatencyTOP focuses on the cases where the applications want to run and execute useful code, but there's some resource that's not currently available (and the kernel then blocks the process). This is done both on a system level and on a per process level, so that you can see what's happening to the system, and which process is suffering and/or causing the delays.

You can find the latencytop userspace tool, including screenshots, at latencytop.org.

Code: (commit)

1.9. BRK and PIE executable randomization

Exec-shield is a Red Hat that was started in 2003 by Red Hat to implement several security protections and is mainly used in Red Hat and Fedora. Many features have already been merged lot of time ago, but not all of them. In 2.6.25 two of them are being merged: brk() randomization and PIE executable randomization. Those two features should make the address space randomization on i386 and x86_64 complete.

Code (commit 1, 2, 3)

1.10. Controller area network (CAN) protocol support

Recommended LWN article: "PF_CAN"

From the "Controller Area Network" Wikipedia article: Controller Area Network (CAN or CAN-bus) is a computer network protocol and bus standard designed to allow microcontrollers and devices to communicate with each other and without a host computer.. This implementation has been contributed by Volkswagen.

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

1.11. ACPI thermal regulation/WMI

In 2.6.25 ACPI adds thermal regulation support (commit 1, 2, 3, 4) and a WMI (Windows Management Interface, a proprietary extension to ACPI) mapper (commit 1, 2, 3)

1.12. EXT4 update

Recommended article: "A better ext4"

EXT4 mainline snapshot gets an update with a bunch of features: Multi-block allocation, large blocksize up to PAGE_SIZE, journal checksumming, large file support, large filesystem support, inode versioning, and allow in-inode extended attributes on the root inode. These features should be the last ones that require on-disk format changes. Other features that don't affect the disk format, like delayed allocation, have still to be merged.

Code: (commit 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11)

1.13. MN10300/AM33 architecture support

The MN10300/AM33 architecture is now supported under the "mn10300" subdirectory. 2.6.25 adds support MN10300/AM33 CPUs produced by MEI. It also adds board support for the ASB2303 with the ASB2308 daughter board, and the ASB2305. The only processor supported is the MN103E010, which is an AM33v2 core plus on-chip devices.

Code: (commit)

Re:Almost slashdotted: copy of important stuff bel (1)

dpilot (134227) | about 6 years ago | (#23105736)

I thought I'd heard somewhere that the new (fully OSS) Atheros drivers were going into the kernel with 2.6/.25, but see no mention. Does anyone have any information on the Atheros/DadWifi kernel merge plans?

It's a kernel, not an OS (5, Insightful)

H4x0r Jim Duggan (757476) | about 6 years ago | (#23103114)

"numerous changes in this revision of the OS"

Asking people to call it GNU/Linux [gnu.org] is one thing, but it's not much to ask Slashdot not to call a kernel changelog an OS changelog.

Re:It's a kernel, not an OS (0, Redundant)

at_slashdot (674436) | about 6 years ago | (#23104802)

Oh, so you are one of those "just a kernel" type of guys. Lately I started to see them just like the "just a theory" people...

A kernel can be an OS. If you use Linux on your cell isn't that the OS? What do you think the OS is, the GUI on top of the kernel?

Re:It's a kernel, not an OS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105804)

Where is Linux's shell (graphical or text-based) that I can use? Oh... that's right. It doesn't have one. Because it is "just" a kernel. Linux is part of an operating system, but it is not an operating system. Until bash/[insert command line shell of choice] or GNOME/[insert destkop environment of choice] is a part of the kernel, the kernel is not a complete operating system.

Re:It's a kernel, not an OS (1)

Burz (138833) | about 6 years ago | (#23106884)

What do you think the GUI is? An application??

Many Linux developers would say "yes", and with that I rest my case in demonstrating "the problem" with getting Linux-based stuff accepted on the desktop.

nvidia drivers (0)

FudRucker (866063) | about 6 years ago | (#23103546)

those of you that use the nvidia driver from http://www.nvidia.com/object/unix.html [nvidia.com] will find the current release NVIDIA-Linux-x86-169.12.pkg1.run will not work with linux-2.6.25

i built 2.6.25 this morning and used menuconfig to load my .config from 2.6.24.4 and once i had my kernel built and rebooted and when i went to build the nvidia driver it failed so i reinstalled 2.6.24.4 which works run the nvidia driver without problems(waits patiently for a new nvidia driver)...

Re:nvidia drivers (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104014)

A quick search would have revealed that patches are readily available.

http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=110088

Re:nvidia drivers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104240)

The latest 173.08 beta drivers work fine. For me at least.. http://www.nvidia.com/Download/Find.aspx?lang=en-us

CIFS (2, Interesting)

Chemisor (97276) | about 6 years ago | (#23103588)

Has anyone noticed the forced CIFS migration warning yet? Do you have some links on how to do that? I mean just the obvious two things of being able to mount a remote windows share (preferably without being root), and setting up CUPS for printing to a windows-shared printer. All I see on Google are technical articles about the protocol.

Re:CIFS (3, Informative)

neersign (956437) | about 6 years ago | (#23104872)

i'm not 100% sure on what you're asking, but I'm guessing you are trying to change from smbfs to cifs, which isn't a big deal. Go in to the kernel config and select "CIFS", deselect "SMBFS" (you can have both selected, but there is no need), recompile, reboot. more details: http://www.gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Setup_Samba [gentoo-wiki.com]

Re:CIFS (1)

Chemisor (97276) | about 6 years ago | (#23105304)

> i'm not 100% sure on what you're asking,

There is a big kernel warning that pops up in 2.6.25, saying that SMBFS is obsolete and will be removed by 2.6.27. As someone who has never even heard of CIFS until I saw that, my first reaction was "OMG, those Linux guys broke Samba! I'm so screwed!". I think that there are quite a few other people who will feel the same way when they try to mount a windows share.

> http://www.gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Setup_Samba [gentoo-wiki.com]

I'll copy the link, in case you don't get modded up. It seems that I'll only need to change the filesystem type in fstab, so it isn't a catastrophe.

Not only the Pope, but the TRUE GOD !! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23103616)

Linus, he has risen

Stallman, sorry, but you are just a dweebass

Network Namespace ... (1)

LabelThis (954151) | about 6 years ago | (#23103866)

Anyone else notice how far the network namespace work has come? Me likes the prospects of having virtual routing and forwarding in the mainstream kernel.

The bug mentioned... (1)

DarenN (411219) | about 6 years ago | (#23104208)

Was interesting - apparently it turns out that it's been there since the Sparse Memory Model was implemented but had never tripped before.

There was no range check on memory_present() so if you called it with a start/end range outside outside the scope of MAX_PHYSMEM_BITS it would overwrite areas of memory causing very weird and random effects during boot. Tracking it down was apparently a major effort by a good few people because the effects were so random.

Good that it's been found and cleaned up!

CORAL CACHE (1, Offtopic)

chk89 (870935) | about 6 years ago | (#23104278)

Is it SO MUCH to ask that someone caches the links on coral cache before they get slashdotted? Just append .nyud.net to the hostname.

exec mode (4, Funny)

Sobrique (543255) | about 6 years ago | (#23104388)

I'm really looking forward to 'exec mode'. It's an awesome kernel feature that pipelines applications for faster execution. It's still experimental though, so you've got to enable it.

It's an option in your system profile (usually /etc/profile).

Just add 'exec true' in there, and it'll start using the prefetch code. OK, so it's not a huge performance boost, but I'll take a free 5-7% any day of the week.

I think you can do it as a non-privileged user by adding it to your 'personal' profile (.profile or .bashrc typically) but obviously it's not then affecting the core system processes.

Re:exec mode (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23105198)

Funny. How about -1, wrong audience?

For the uninitiated: placing 'exec true' in your profile renders you unable to open a terminal (on 99% of linux desktops that use bash as shell)

(heh. Captcha: lecture)

Kernel or OS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23104614)

'It's been long promised, but there it is now,' began Linux creator Linus Torvalds, announcing the 2.6.25 Linux kernel. [...] There were numerous changes in this revision of the OS.
So, which one is it?

CAN support! Yay! (2, Interesting)

fgaliegue (1137441) | about 6 years ago | (#23104866)

Linux can now be used to debug your car's network - provided a hardware interface exists.

If it doesn't, I bet it will not be long before someone implements one. And since CAN is used in pretty much every automation in modern cars, who knows. "An open firmware for your Passat", anyone?

Trigger? (0, Offtopic)

buravirgil (137856) | about 6 years ago | (#23107050)

i hear the term 'trigger' from as educated circles as the Supreme Court

Trigger is a horse
Trigger is a causal construct
Trigger has dubious connotation

Precipitate is a correlation of a field and a force

Forces are expressions of an interruption of a
field's equilibrium

many fields can be contained, many cannot
many forces are introduced, many are arrived by
a stress around a contained field

a "trigger' is either directly linked or "acts" from a balance of links

a trigger is a node and behaves to a prioritized
link or balances input from many

either heirarchically prioritized or given equity

the variable of a trigger is clock timing...

how many times around a value will be "seen" and by what order

once again it happens.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#23107278)

I remember this happening last year? or the year before when ubuntu was coming out a with a new release that the kernel was updated just a few days before hand. so they didn't have it in the release.
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