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Re: Which kernel series to use in the installer and for installed system

From: Efraim Flashner
Subject: Re: Which kernel series to use in the installer and for installed systems?
Date: Sun, 6 Jun 2021 11:43:46 +0300

On Sat, Jun 05, 2021 at 02:09:59PM -0400, Mark H Weaver wrote:
> Hi Efraim,
> Efraim Flashner <> writes:
> > I don't really understand why
> > and how a newer kernel would make things stop working,
> Newer kernels _usually_ work fine, but occasionally things break, and
> that's much more likely to happen when switching to a newer kernel
> series.  It happened to me quite recently, when a couple of us found
> that early 5.12.x kernels would lock up a Thinkpad X200 within minutes
> of booting.  See <>.
> For those who can afford to deal with breakage like this at unscheduled
> times, the 'linux-libre' variable is likely the best choice.  For those
> who prefer stability, I recommend 'linux-libre-X.YY' for some LTS series
> X.YY.
> The 'linux-libre-lts' variable seems to me the worst of both worlds, and
> likely to lead to some people getting burned from unexpected kernel
> upgrades that they might not have been expecting.  If 'linux-libre-lts'
> is included as an option, I recommend adding text that makes it clear to
> users that automatic upgrades to newer LTS series will happen without
> warning, years before such upgrades are needed.
> What do you think?
>      Regards,
>        Mark

I know if I were using the zfs kernel module I'd want to use the most
recent lts release. I like the idea of labeling it something like:

* linux-libre      (tracks the latest kernel release)
* linux-libre-lts  (tracks most recent long-term support release, with
                    upgrades to newer versions automatically)
* linux-libre-5.10 (current long-term support release, supported until
                    December 2026)

I know upstream uses 'stable' to mean the current release, but I
personally find the terminology confusing.

Efraim Flashner   <>   אפרים פלשנר
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