I'm running 2.6.7 with Slack-10.0 and cannot tell anything that makes it "faster"
than 2.4.27 at all. In fact, I'm having some memory issues and some sluggish
behavior in X that I've not had before and haven't pinned down yet. And one
of our moderators says his wife is having the same issues on her Slack-10.0
box where he just compiled a 2.6 kernel.
ALSA has always been something I've compiled from source, until Slack-10.0
put them in the distro. I'm running ALSA with 2.6.7 with no problems. If you
just follow the instructions, rather than a bunch of posts in forums, you'll do ok.
Look in this directory -> /usr/src/linux-2.6.7/Documentation/sound/alsa/
I think most people don't realize that the kernel maintainers and developers
put Documentation in the kernel. I didn't know until recently.
Recording CDs with the 2.4 series kernels using scsi emulation was really nice,
and I rarely if ever burned a coaster. With 2.6 Linus and company decided
to use those drives as IDE devices, and Jorg Schilling, who wrote cdrecord,
which is now cdrtools, is fighting everybody "tooth and nail." He seems to be
quite a hard head, and doesn't want to adjust his app to Linux. I used to love
to burn CDs from the command line, and experience the raw power, speed,
and multi-tasking capabilites of that interface. Now if I burn in cli with a good
52x32x52 burner, I can only burn at 10x, or I'll burn a coaster. And his docs
are absolutely horrible. Not user friendly. To get the correct performance I
must use KDE and that stinking K3b gui app. I've read all manner of posts by
kernel guys, and they're up in arms with Schilling. They also state how they
burn as a regular user, and not as root. Yes, that works, but either someone
else will have to fork cdrecord (cdrtools) and fix the things that Schilling is
unwilling to change, or we'll have to do something different. I have not tried
to burn in 2.6.7 using scsi emulation, because Linus and the kernel guys say
that's not the way. This is my main issue so far with 2.6.7.
I'm not an experienced Linux user by a long shot, but I can see that the 2.6.x
kernels are really a testing ground for a whole lot of new things. If you read
some of Linux Kernel Mailing List
you will be quite surprised to see some of
the discussions. So much is in flux, and they're really trying new things as they
go, so my attitude is that if I want stability and a proven track record, I'll boot
2.4.27. But if I want to test the new waters, boot 2.6.7.
I'm having issues, but this comp has a new SATA drive
which doesn't use dma like IDE drives. And I only used any kernel except
2.6.7 because of that SATA drive. I think tomorrow I'm going to compile a
2.4.27 and see how it runs. I can then check hdparm and see what it says
for my SATA drive (Linux) and the IDE drive (Windoze and Linux swap).