"On behalf of the NetBSD Release Engineering team, I am happy to announce the availability of NetBSD 4.0 Release Candidate 2," stated Pavel Cahyna on the NetBSD -announce mailing list. The lower portion of the changelog lists numerous bug fixes since Release Candidate 1, the most important ones highlighted as: "ICH9 support in wm(4); Enhanced Speedstep support for VIA C7/Eden and amd64; many bugfixes for IPF; FAST_IPSEC fixes; wpi(4) bugfix; proplib local DoS fix; fix procfs exposing the real path of an executable inside chroot; msdosfs bugfix; fix of crash dumps on sparc64; ACPI SCI (system control interrupt) bug fix, addresses interrupt storms seen on some machines."
Pavel went on to note, "please note that in this release candidate, the sparc platform has been accidentally omitted. This will be corrected in the next RC cycle. We plan to release another release candidate next week." He concluded, "please help us test these release candidates as much as possible to make NetBSD 4.0 a solid release."
"I said I was hoping that -rc8 was the last -rc, and I hate doing this, but we've had more changes since -rc8 than we had in -rc8. And while most of them are pretty trivial, I really couldn't face doing a 2.6.23 release and take the risk of some really stupid brown-paper-bag thing," Linus Torvalds said, announcing the 2.6.23-rc9 kernel. He added, "so there's a final -rc out there, and right now my plan is to make this series really short, and release 2.6.23 in a few days. So please do give it a last good testing, and holler about any issues you find!" He went on to warn developers that the first thing planned for 2.6.24 was to merge the unified x86 architecture:
"This is also a good time to warn about the fact that we're doing the x86 merge very soon (as in the next day or two) after 2.6.23 is out, so if you have pending patches for the next series that touch arch/i386 or x86-64, you should get in touch with Thomas Gleixner and Ingo Molnar, who are the keepers of the merge scripts, and will help you prepare..
"Doing it as early as possible in the 2.6.24-rc4 series (basically I'll do it first thing) will mean that we'll have the maximum amount of time to sort out any issues, and the thing is, Thomas and Ingo already have a tree ready to go, so people can check their work against that, and don't need to think that they have to do any fixups after it his *my* tree. It would be much better if everybody was just ready for it, and not taken by surprise."
"Ok, I think I'm getting close to releasing a real 2.6.23," began Linus Torvalds in his release announcement for the eighth release candidate of the upcoming 2.6.23 kernel. "Things seem to have calmed down, and I think Thomas Gleixner may have found the suspend/resume regression that has dogged us for a while, so I'm feeling happy about things." Linus continued:
"Of course, me feeling happy is usually immediately followed by some nasty person finding new problems, but I'll just ignore that and enjoy the feeling anyway, however fleeting it may be.
"The shortlog really is pretty short, and I'm appending the diffstat at the end too in case anybody cares, but basically it's just a number of fairly small but real fixes, with some support for a few new chips to the sky2 network driver.."
"Ahoy me laddies (and beauties)," Linux creator Linus Torvalds began, announcing the seventh release candidate for the upcoming 2.6.23 kernel, "time for the traditional 'Talk Like a Pirate Day' kernel release!" He noted, "now, last year we had a full release (2.6.18 was immortalized on TLAP-2006), but this year I'm chickening out, and we're just doing what is hopefully going to be the last -rc release for the 2.6.23 series." Full source changes can be viewed via the gitweb interface. Linus also offered a brief summary of the changes:
"I'm not including the diffstat, because it got blown up by the resurrection of the sk98lin driver - because skge that is supposed to supplant it doesn't handle some of the hardware. Oh well.
"Apart from that, we had some mips, powerpc and xtense updates, and various driver tweaks. Things like the USB autosuspend revert should make people happier, and some more clockevents fixes should help suspend/restore on i386."
Linus Torvalds announced the sixth release candidate of the upcoming 2.6.23 kernel, a final release expected within the next few weeks. He noted:
"So last week was a bust, with a lot of core people away for the kernel summit, and with -rc5 having two rather nasty (and silly) one-liner problems that bit a number of people - a missing NULL pointer check in TCP, and a missing list terminator in ata_piix.
"So the fixes for those things were both pretty trivial, and they've been in the -git trees for the last few days, but I just pushed out an -rc6 that also merges up some other updates that did come in during the week."
The -rc6 source level changes can be browsed via the gitweb interface.
"On behalf of the NetBSD Release Engineering Team, it is my pleasure to announce that the first release candidate for NetBSD 4.0 has been released," Liam Foy posted to the NetBSD -announce mailing list. The release has been a long time coming, first announced in August of 2006 by Jeff Rizzo, "NetBSD 4.0_BETA was branched on August 8, 2006 (UTC), and the beta-testing process has officially begun." Shortly after that, Charles Hannum, one of the NetBSD creators, posted an email self-described as a possible eulogy and calling into question the future of the NetBSD project. Updates regarding NetBSD 4.0 were posted in November and December of 2006 regarding delays resulting from two IRC hackathons which caused "a huge flurry of bug-fixing activity, which improved the quality of NetBSD-current a huge amount." This led to NetBSD 4.0 being rebranched from -current to preserve the large number of bug fixes that were made there.
The project's website maintains a comprehensive list of changes in NetBSD 4.0 as compared to the current stable 3.x branch. Liam continued in the release announcement, "we expect to release a second release candidate in about two weeks. Please help us test these release candidates as much as possible, to make sure NetBSD 4.0 will be a solid release.".
Linus Torvalds announced the fifth release candidate for the upcoming 2.6.23 Linux kernel noting that he was on his way to Cambridge, England, for the 2007 kernel summit. The invite-only kernel summit has been hosted in Ontario, Canada the past five years, this being the first year it has been hosted in Europe. It will happen over three days, from September 4'th through September 6'th.
Regarding 2.6.23-rc5, Linus noted, "hopefully we've addressed most regressions, so please do give it a good testing." He went on to summarize, "the shortlog and diffstat are appended: the diffstat is uglified by some powerpc defconfig updates, but otherwise it all looks pretty nice and small. The shortlog is fairly informative if you care about the details of what changed, but it does end up boiling down to 'fixing a number of generally pretty small issues'. Mostly in drivers and SCTP. So have fun, give it a go, and expect a quiet week next week."
Linux creator Linus Torvalds announced the latest release candidate of the upcoming 2.6.23 kernel, "it can mostly be described with the one word, 'boring'", he said, noting there weren't any exciting changes. He added that there was two weeks between this and the last release candidate, summarizing:
"As a result, -rc4 is a bit bigger than it would/should have been, but hopefully it's all good, and we've fixed most regressions. There's some arch updates (MIPS, power, sparc64, s390) and an ACPI update, but the rest of it is mainly lots of small fixes (mostly to various random drivers). With some scheduler and networking noise."
"Either people really are calming down, and figuring out that we're in the stabilization phase," Linus Torvalds began in announcing 2.6.23-rc3, "or it's just that it's the middle of August, and most everybody at least in Europe are off on vacation." The actual source-level changes can be browsed via the kernel.org gitweb interface. Linus went on to summarize:
"Regardless of why, -rc3 is out, and doesn't have the tons of changes that -rc2 did. But there's some scheduler updates, sparc64 and powerpc changes, and random driver updates (the lpfc SCSI driver kind of stands out in the diffstat).
Shortlog appended, I don't know what I can add to it.. Please do give it a good testing, unless you're on a beach sunning yourself (and who are we kidding: you're pasty white, and sand is hard to get out of the keyboard - beaches are overrated)."
"So I tried to hold people to the merge window," Linus Torvalds began in announcing the 2.6.23-rc2 kernel, "and said no to a few pull requests, but this whole '-rc2 is the new -rc1' thing is a disease, and not only is -rc2 late, it's bigger than it should be. Oh, well." He noted that over 250 people contributed patches between -rc1 and -rc2, adding:
"A lot of the changes are small, and a lot of them really are fixes, but there's a MIPS merge in there too, and some absolutely _huge_ diffs due to some drivers undergoing Lindent cleanups (28 _thousand_ lines changes in advansys.c, and the PNP files got Lindented too, although those weren't nearly as big).
"But if you ignore the Lindent changes, the MIPS merge, the lguest documentation updates, and the MPT fusion driver changes, and the removal of the broken arm26 support, the rest of the changes really aren't that big."
As expected, Linus Torvalds released the 2.6.23-rc1 kernel two weeks after the release of 2.6.22, ending the merge window, "and it has a *ton* of changes as usual for the merge window, way too much for me to be able to post even just the shortlog or diffstat on the mailing list". He noted, "I personally like how 'sendfile' is now totally gone internally, and the kernel now ends up doing all that with splice insted. Good riddance, although we'll obvously end up supporting the old user level interfaces for a long time." Linus went on to summarize the other changes:
"Lots of architecture updates (for just about all of them - x86[-64], arm, alpha, mips, ia64, powerpc, s390, sh, sparc, um..), lots of driver updates (again, all over - usb, net, dvb, ide, sata, scsi, isdn, infiniband, firewire, i2c, you name it).
"Filesystems, VM, networking, ACPI, it's all there. And virtualization all over the place (kvm, lguest, Xen).
"Notable new things might be the merge of the cfs scheduler, and the UIO driver infrastructure might interest some people."
In a humorous announcement for the latest release candidate of the upcoming 2.6.22 Linux kernel, Linus Torvalds noted that there were updates to the ARM, SH and Blackfin architectures. He also noted fixes to USB suspend, infiband, and the network stack, as well as updates to ATA, DVB and MMC, and network drivers. Noting that a three-day weekend was starting in the US he said, "so what's a pasty white nerd to do? You can't go out on the beach, because the goodlooking people will laugh at you, and kick sand in your face. I'm not bitter." Linus continued:
"But now you _can_ do something: you can download the latest -rc kernel, and smile smugly to yourself, knowing that you are running the latest and greatest on your machine. And suddenly it doesn't even matter that summer is coming, because you can just sit in the basement, and close the blinds, and bask in the warm light from your LCD, rather than the harsh glare of the daystar.."
Further information about what's new and changed in the upcoming 2.6.22 kernel can be found in the KernelNewbies wiki. The latest -rc can be downloaded from the Linux Kernel Archives [story], and the source changes can be browsed online using the gitweb interface.
"Ok, the merge window has closed, and 2.6.22-rc1 is out there," Linus Torvalds announced on the Linux Kernel Mailing List. He noted that there were a large number of changes, "almost seven thousand files changed, and that's not double-counting the files that got moved around." As to what was changed, Linus summarized, "architecture updates, drivers, filesystems, networking, security, build scripts, reorganizations, cleanups.. You name it, it's there." He went on to add:
"You want a new firewire stack? We've got it. New wireless networking infrastructure? Check. New infiniband drivers? Digital video drivers? A totally new CPU architecture (blackfin)? Check, check, check.
"That said, I think (and certainly hope) that this will not be nearly as painful as the big fundamental timer changes for 2.6.21, and while there are some pretty core changes there (like the new SLUB allocator, which hopefully will end up replacing both SLAB and SLOB), it feels pretty solid, and not as scary as ripping the carpet from under the timer infrastructure."
Announcing 2.6.21-rc2, Linus Torvalds noted, "I'm not very proud of this, because quite frankly, -rc2 has way more changes than I really like." The current Linux kernel development model is that the bulk of changes in a new kernel should happen during the -rc1 phase, with the rest of the -rc kernels being primarily bug fixes. Linus explains, "it's largely my fault, because I simply missed a V4L/DVB merge that came in before the merge window closed, but since I didn't notice it didn't make -rc1, and as such it got merged late and is in -rc2 instead." With typical humor he added, "but because I'll flail around wildly and rather blame anything else than my own incompetence, I'll just claim that all the other kernel developers have been irresponsible, and caused -rc2 to be bigger than needed. In some areas (you know who you are) it may even be true.."
Summarizing other changes in the new release candidate, Linus said, "apart from the V4L/DVB merge, we've got a late PARISC update, and a number of driver updates (ata, networking, usb) changes. Along with the normal smattering of random stuff (core networking, selinux, infiniband, agp, mips, arm)." He then pointed to Adrian's regression lists [story] noting that some are fixed but there are more to go. The latest kernel can be downloaded from your nearest kernel.org mirror. You can browse through all the changes using the gitweb interface. Kernel Newbiews maintains a useful summary of all the changes going into the latest version of the Linux kernel.
Adrian Bunk posted a couple lists of known regressions that found their way into the 2.6.21-rc1 kernel [story] since the release of the 2.6.20 kernel [story]. Adrian notes that his lists only include bugs that are not yet fixed in Linus' -git tree. In an updated version of his lists he included 19 known regressions, including links to bugzilla or the appropriate mailing list discussion thread. The lists track who submitted the bug, who is currently handling it, who caused it if known, a link to a patch that fixes the problem if any, and the current status.