Canonical to maintain Linux 3.8 until August 2014
The Ubuntu kernel developers plan to provide security fixes and minor improvements for version 3.8 of the Linux kernel until August 2014; version 3.8 was released in February. The announcement by Canonical employee Kamal Mostafa came just days after Greg Kroah-Hartman had discontinued the maintenance of Linux 3.8; Kroah-Hartman oversees the maintenance of the stable and long-term kernels and is currently maintaining stable kernel version 3.9 and long-term kernel versions 3.0 and 3.4.
This is the second kernel, after Linux 3.5, that the Canonical developers have decided to maintain within an "Extended Stable" programme on Ubuntu's web pages, and therefore independently of kernel.org. This makes their approach different from that of Debian kernel maintainer Ben Hutchings, who is maintaining Linux 3.2 – the basis of Debian 7 – as an official long-term kernel at kernel.org. Consequently, Canonical's maintenance of 3.5 is not listed on the Linux kernel's central web site, and Linux 3.8 continues to be classified as EOL (End-of-Life) – at least for the time being.
The Canonical developers plan to base their maintenance on the same rules that apply for the maintenance of the official stable and long-term kernels. Their maintenance of version 3.8 is a by-product – they must maintain Linux 3.8 anyway, as it forms the kernel base for Ubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail). The kernel of the "Raring Hardware Enablement Stack", which will be maintained until August 2014 and is scheduled to be included in Ubuntu 12.04.3, is also based on version 3.8. However, the kernels that are used there contain other modifications and drivers that are not included in the Extended Stable kernels.