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2001 Dec 30 17:01

The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: Re: [vox-tech] new kernel: 2.4.2
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Re: Re: [vox-tech] new kernel: 2.4.2

heh.  someday i'd REALLY like to hack the kernel, so i try to read about
this stuff with every spare second i get (and sometimes not-so-spare).  one
of my life's ambitions is for alan or linus to buy me a beer and say "good
patch".  :)

the upgrade from 2.2.16 to 2.2.18 shouldn't be a problem (no guarentees
though).   the upgrade to 2.4.0 might require certain things like procps and
almost certainly modutils to be updated.

2.4.0 has new ISA probing features that 2.2.* didn't really have.  ISA
probing is considered risky business, but the 2.4 series seems to have a new
way of probing ISA devices safely (i don't know the details yet).  so it's
possible that you'll have better hardware support.  or at least, more
convenient hw support.

otoh, some of the drivers got split, like the rtl8129/8139.  so you'll have
to do a little reading during menuconfig.

realize that you can't hurt anything by compiling a kernel, as long as you
remember the following rules:

1. don't delete a working kernel.  don't delete it's /lib/modules.  make
    sure you leave its lilo.conf entry in place.
2. run lilo.  if you can't remember if you ran lilo, run lilo.
3. use oldconfig if you have a .config in the old source tree.
4. make use of vox-tech.  we've got some really great people here.

if something goes wrong, you can always go back to the working kernel.


ps- jay, if you're running a 2.2.16 kernel, you should considering buying
(or downloading) a more recent version of the distro and upgrading.   :)

On Tue 27 Feb 01, 11:46 AM, Deja User said: 
> Pete, your work ethic gives me an inferiority complex (to be a maintainer and an 
>advocate- that's a lot of work!), nevertheless, maybe Jay would appreciate your 
>thinking on: if he upgrades, are there any obvious gotchas he should be aware of, or 
>can he expect all his hardware/software should still work ok after the upgrade? I'm 
>making a basic assumption he is not running anything too exotic. If everything worked 
>ok with the old, should he expect it to be ok with the new (in general)? I'm assuming 
>so, but I think he wants to avoid "buyer's regret" and/or a major hassle with having 
>to revert to the old system that "just worked". Sounds like he whould be ok, from 
>what you've already stated. Thanks for the info. you've already given. UA 
> >Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2001 11:13:52 -0800
> >To: vox-tech@franz.mother.com
> >Subject: Re: [vox-tech] new kernel: 2.4.2
> >From: Peter Jay Salzman <p@dirac.org>
> >Reply-To: vox-tech@franz.mother.com
> >
> >heh... but even if you want to talk about "bug free" versus "stable", it's
> >STILL not true!
> >
> >before a feature freeze (a "pre" version of an odd numbered kernel), tons
> >of new features go into a kernel.
> >
> >in 2.4.1, new support went in for reiserfs.  certainly there are bugs in
> >this new feature.
> >
> >what you're saying that "2.4.1" has less bugs than "2.4.0" just because 1 is
> >greater than 0?   i would say it has MORE bugs, since it has new features
> >which haven't really gone through a 10 million person test cycle.  it's only
> >been tested by a few people until it makes its way into a production kernel.
> >
> >as another example, a class of buffer overflows were introduced into 2.2.16
> >and didn't get caught until 2.2.18.  certainly 2.2.16 isn't necessarily more
> >bug free than 2.2.15?
> >
> >i guess what i'm saying is that it's hard to say whether one kernel is more
> >or less stable or bug free than another.   it's too big of a program, and
> >gets too much features added with each version to say "2.4.1 is less buggy
> >than 2.4.0".   new features == new bugs.
> >
> >in fact, consider that 2.4.0 lived life for almost 6 months as a feature
> >frozen 2.3.whatever-pre-whatever.  i'd be willing to bet that 2.4.0 was
> >pretty darn bug free!   then linus and alan screwed it up by adding more
> >features.
> >
> >;-)   just playing devil's advocate here.
> >
> >pete
> >
> >On Tue 27 Feb 01, 11:01 AM, William Kendrick said: 
> >> > 
> >> > even numbered kernels are called stable.
> >> > odd numbered kernels are call beta.
> >> > 
> >> > or were you giving us the official bill-kendrick kernel versioning?    :)
> >> 
> >> I guess I'm thinking "bug free" not "stable." :)
> >> 
> >> -bill!

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