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Old 04-27-2009, 12:27 AM   #1
jacatone
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Do all Linux distros use the same kernel?


I've noticed a marked improvement in functionality in Ubuntu and it's derivatives with version 8.10 and kernel 2.6.27. Do all the many Linux distros whether they're Debian, RPM, Slackware use the same base kernel? Thanks.
 
Old 04-27-2009, 12:31 AM   #2
irabinovitch
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Many distributions apply specific patches to the vanilla kernels to resolve bugs reported by their users, back port features from newer kernels, etc.
 
Old 04-27-2009, 03:42 AM   #3
H_TeXMeX_H
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Different distros most certainly do NOT use the same kernel, not the version nor the actual kernel even if the versions match, there are usually patches applied by many distros and they're compiled for different architectures and with different options.
 
Old 04-27-2009, 08:03 AM   #4
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It seems that the 2.4 kernel has been somewhat 'updated' again, since Dec of 08. I think even that kernel version is probably just kept as maintenance. I kinda wonder what distro now even uses the 2.4 series. Also 2.2 on kernel.org seems to have a rc, but it has been in rc status since 05` .


I wonder when the 2.8 kernels will come out, or maybe they will just straight to 3.0.
 
Old 04-27-2009, 09:17 AM   #5
pixellany
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Distrowatch lists the default kernel used by each of the distros it tracks...
 
Old 04-27-2009, 10:35 AM   #6
H_TeXMeX_H
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeebizz View Post
It seems that the 2.4 kernel has been somewhat 'updated' again, since Dec of 08. I think even that kernel version is probably just kept as maintenance. I kinda wonder what distro now even uses the 2.4 series. Also 2.2 on kernel.org seems to have a rc, but it has been in rc status since 05` .
I'm quite positive 2.4 is still being actively maintained due to its extreme stability ... useful in mission-critical servers. 2.2 support I believe was dropped, but some people still use it.
 
Old 04-27-2009, 07:29 PM   #7
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"The Linux kernel" is a fairly complicated piece of software which can be compiled in a number of different ways. Basically, a configuration file is set up with a laundry-list of options, and this file subsequently determines exactly which blocks of source-code are or are not included in "the Linux kernel" for your system. (The same process also determines which "kernel modules" are built.)

Generally speaking, a distro writer will do all of that "heavy lifting" for you: they'll compile one or more kernels, using config options that they have carefully selected, and include those (in binary form) in their distributions. They might even include custom patches.

So, the answer to your question is "both 'yes' and 'no.'" Yes, several distros might use "Linux version X.Y.Z.," but No, they might not use the same configuration options when building it.

And this is why so many folks happily use "distros," barely knowing why the distro writers are gnashing their teeth. (And, it's also why the folks who are gnashing their teeth are nevertheless unwilling to explain why they are doing so: "you really don't want to know...")

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 04-27-2009 at 07:31 PM.
 
Old 04-28-2009, 08:10 AM   #8
brianL
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Slackware is said to have a "vanilla", unpatched, kernel.
 
  


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