Before we head towards gaining information on Linux 4.2 Kernel as a subject, it is important to know why you should update your kernel. There are always some good reasons that incline us to update Kernel often. Some of them we’ll see here to learn how Linux 4.2 update has major importance in the real-life business scenario.
1) Security Enhancement:
In every kernel update, we see additional security enhancements that close the present and predicted loopholes identified by industry experts. This is the main reason why one should update the Kernel often to stay protected from the threats lurking the World Wide Web.
2) Increased Stability Level
The kernel update does not mean just security updates, but it brings along other improvements as well that reduces the possibilities of system crashes. Though, many debate that updating kernel to the latest versions on a regular or frequent basis decreases the overall system stability. Quite possible as running on a kernel which is a bit new to you, makes it hard to predict whether it would work within a business environment. While the concern might be true in certain cases, we can safely say the risk margin is rather thin; however, system administrators cautiously react to every new update. Hence, a tenured system expert would first test the new update in a controlled environment before rolling it out all across.
3) Updated Drivers
Whenever a major kernel update is proposed for the use, it guarantees the inclusion of the latest updated drivers for all devices. Every refreshed updated version for drivers brings enhanced performance.
4) New Functions
Every major update in Linux kernel brings some new functions to ease the load on programs that use some sort of task or operations. In addition, some functions get changed, but the change in some functions most likely won’t break your system. So updating on the latest would be the sensible step as sooner or later some of your programs and packages may require a certain version of the kernel. So before it’s late, try to have the latest one.
5) Increased Speed
Major updates always have meant to enhance overall speed of the system, however, some changes can be indirect, and some other don’t make any massive difference, but the updated kernel increases the overall productivity of Linux machines.
In Linux kernel 4.2 more than one million lines of code have been added with inclusion of redesigned driver for AMD GPU, plus support for new processor platforms. Now this is interesting, isn’t it?
Well, according to Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux Kernel, the additional features within Linux kernel 4.2 is now complete, where many of these would be new for this future version of the open source kernel.
He specifically mentioned that the version 4.2 of Linux kernel will be the biggest release performed, however, tempers its original forecast: according to him, this version would be the largest one ever proposed, but that depends on how you count in numbers of lines of code as per the requirements. Indeed, it’s one of the largest in recent history of rec-1 Linux. For example, the 3.10-rc1 which was almost big and it turns out that the 3.15-rc1 was more of promises than the 4.2-rc1.
If you measure the largeness based on numbers, then you will be certainly surprised by knowing the fact that more than one million additional lines are added to this kernel version and about a quarter of a million lines removed. This version clearly beats the previous titleholder 3.11-rc1, which was mainly the size of chandelier in the kernel.
AMD side efforts and ARM
The redesign of AMD GPU support is also a notable change. A considerable patch with more advancements by the mere catalog of AMD GPU registers, which also accounts for 415 changes in Linux 4.2 RC1. In total, 49% of the changes made to RC1, are related to AMD GPU driver.
Rest of the parts are mainly divided between the various new media platforms processor with new motherboards for ARM forming the main body, monitoring the management of Intel Atom Chips “Broxton” and seriously reviewing the “x86 processors” support.
For Linus Torvalds, it’s quite unusual that x86’s low-level code being relatively stable and is rarely subject to such great changes.
Note: support for the Renesas H8/300 processor architecture is also available in Linux 4.2!
There is another good news, the management of queuing of Trim commands (Trim NCQ) has been refined as well, so we can hope for better managed SSD implements.
Some other modifications are made into the file system, with the key to enhance performance, greater stability and new data encryption options. And with the final touch of UEFI support that continues to grow allows better management of next-gen computers.
Don’t forget to share your views with us on Linux 4.2. We would greatly appreciate your feedback or expectation from this newer version.