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21 August 2012, 10:20

Linux 3.4 to be maintained for two years

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Greg Kroah-Hartman plans to maintain Linux kernel 3.4, which was released in May, for at least two years. Previously designated as a stable kernel, this announcement promotes version 3.4 to the status of long-term kernel. The stable and long-term kernel maintainer has also announced that Linux 3.0, which has been maintained for a while as a long-term kernel, will continue to be maintained for at least another year. Linux 3.5 will follow the usual scheme, with the Linux Foundation Fellow maintaining it as a stable kernel until the release of Linux 3.6.1.

This increases the current number of long-term kernels to seven. The most venerable are Linux 2.6.27 and 2.6.32, maintained by Willy Tarreau, who publishes new versions every few months. Paul Gortmaker with Linux 2.6.34 and Andi Kleen with 2.6.35 follow a similar procedure. Debian and kernel developer Ben Hutchings maintains Linux 3.2, which will be used in Debian 7.0 "Wheezy". Like Kroah-Hartman, Hutchings generally releases several updates to long-term kernels each month.

Two new long-term kernels have been released in recent days – Linux and 3.2.28. Versions 3.0.42 and 3.4.10 and stable kernel 3.5.3 are all currently in the pipeline and should be released shortly.


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