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Is the kernel development process broken?

Is the kernel development process broken?

Posted Mar 9, 2005 23:28 UTC (Wed) by PaulDickson (subscriber, #478)
In reply to: Is the kernel development process broken? by jwb
Parent article: Is the kernel development process broken?

Is the extra-stable tree going to merge up to 2.6.x for every value of x? If so I don't see the value, because that would mean the 2.6.x.y kernel contains all the problems of 2.6.x, minus a few fixes.

I think you have it mentally backword: the 2.6.x.y kernel contains 2.6.x, plus a few fixes. Which is the same except for atitude. y can continue to increment even after 2.6.x+1 is released (which might happen if 2.6.x+1 is not considered to be stable enough).

I used to test a lot of kernels, but eventually the problems I was seeing became untestable. The problems tend to crop up on the larger multiprocessor machines with significant i/o abilities and vast storage under heavy load, and unfortunately I don't have a "spare" one of those I can use for purposes of Linux kernel quality assurance.

Is it any wonder unreported bugs might persist? Especially on uncommon machines that developers might not have ready access. And while you may not have a spare machine, you are testing the kernels. Even if you only use kernels from a distribution for your exact system, you'll still have to do this testing, except in that case you'd send the report back to the distribution's creator.

Both positive and negative reports are always helpful, but more detail is better for negative results.

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