ah ... when it's not broken don't fix it ...
Sorry i should have specified, MDK 10.0 is reportedly having issues. Also, from personal experience, 8.2 (Pocket book) had serious issues on installing the development packages during install because both gcc 2.9x and 3.x got installed and there was some serious conflicts there.
It depends on what sort of kernel you have as to whether it can load the appropriate module.
Personally, i believe in customizing the kernel (and other components) to suit my needs best, as such i don't rely on stock kernels, rather i compile those items into the kernel i have, and those items i can see myself getting in the near future, as modules.
Stock kernels, commonly cater to the masses for the obvious reason that MDK (or red hat or suse or whoever) does not know what you have, so the create modular kernels (mainly) which means the kernel loads what you have, and all is well.
Not updating your drivers / kernel and so forth is a dangerous endeavour IMHO, but i completely agree with the concept of if it ain't broke...
Problem is it is broken, you merely don't see this.
in Software Engineering we have the concept that every item of software has faults (personal opinion on this varies, but lets stick to the text book). Not every item of software exhibits failures though. The difference is that a failure is something the user realises, whilst a fault is something that goes wrong internally.
Not every fault leads to failure, but they still occur.
If your system is not connected to the net, then it makes little difference if you might be compromised from an outside person hacking your system or not. BECAUSE if there is no connection, it can not happen. That this fault exist does not change, because you are not susceptible.
Rather, YOU as an individual and probably skip the upgrade, the broken part is not used by you, so you're fine.
Consider a more commonplace concern. The horn on my car was broken, for more than a year, when i went for registration year after year they passed me, stating "you should get that fixed". I never use my horn. It wasn't broken, it did just what i wanted it to, NOTHING.
yes the bloody thing was stuffed, and yes i had to fix it, and yes it cost me $5 to get a replacement, and 2 minutes to replace the old one, but for 2 years i was rather happy with where it was at.
Now, the plan for the worst when updationg etc. YES, well ... depends. I have yet to have a problem upgrading, and i have experienced every new kernel since 2.4.10 (or thereabouts). in fact i started on 2.2 ... be that as it may, nothing has ever gone wrong. Arguably i'm extremely lucky, because i know it ain't a matter of pre planning, but when i'm working on an ISP's servers i am extremely weary of updating packages, rather i let the resident guru deal with it, because i'm not gain.
So i whole heartedly agree with you, but frankly, when it comes to the system I use for MY work, i want the latest and greatest, and i like knowing that i'm on the fore front of kernels, sure i'm not using the rcs but i don't have the bandwidth.
I know the risks, and i can compensate if i have to. Upgrading especially in Linux, on kernels that are under heavy development (such as 2.6 with which MDK 10.0 ships) is essential. This is also the reason we don't use MDK 10.0 on ISP servers.