The Linux Kernel stable team announced the release of the 188.8.131.52 kernel. There's a long list of fixes, not the least of which is the data corruption fix from Linus and some security fixes.
The Linux kernel has been updated with several serviceability improvements, chiefly around the kdump and SystemTap features.
The kdump enhancements should improve the ability to reliably and quickly create crash dumps that can be analyzed offline. The new SystemTap features enable IT professionals to debug a running system in real-time without affecting performance or recompiling.
Linus Torvalds has included the virtualization environment KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine for Linux) in the tree leading to Linux kernel 2.6.20. In the case of KVM the kernel after loading a special module itself functions as a hypervisor for virtual machines.
As part of the 2.6.20 development process, patches adding support for the 'PS3 game console and other devices' (built on top of the IBM Cell) have been merged. The code has been written by Sony.
In a perfect world, you could compile a brand-new Linux kernel without the need for much configuration and without error.
According to Linus Torvalds, the new 2.6.19 Linux kernel is such an entity.
"It's one of those rare "perfect" kernels," Torvalds wrote in a Linux kernel mailing list posting announcing the new kernel. "So if it doesn't happen to compile with your config (or it does compile, but then does unspeakable acts of perversion with your pet dachshund), you can rest easy knowing that it's all your own d*mn fault, and you should just fix your evil ways."
This aims to be the most comprehensive kernel comparison of the latest most popular Unix style kernel verses the latest most popular current kernel. A kind of kernel comparison FAQ.
Recently, Andrew Morton released a mm patch including, among other things, the new ext4 file system patch. The ext4 file system promises improved data integrity and performance, among with less limitations. Even though in the early stages of development, the ext4 file system already shows performance improvements under some workloads.
As of 2.6.18, the mainline Linux kernel has gained real-time features. But there are some confusion about the benefits and drawbacks of having real-time capabilities. This post explains the benefits and drawbacks of these.