Linus Torvalds has announced the release of Linux kernel 3.16 codenamed ‘Shuffling Zombie Juror’, which brings many notable improvements.
This release is just before LinuxCon and Kernel Summit which is being organised in Chicago (I will be attending the event on behalf of The Mukt).
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There was nothing much dramatic about this release as Linus said, “So while 3.16 looked a bit iffy for a while, things cleared up nicely, and there was no reason to do extra release candidates like I feared just a couple of weeks ago.”
It also means that working on 3.17 has started, “And as usual (previous release being the exception) that means that the merge window for 3.17 is obviously open,” said Linus.
As usual, the new kernel sports a lot of fixes and support of new hardware. The most notable changes include reclocking support Kepler GPUs with open source Nvidia driver and groundwork support for the new upcoming Cherryview SoC from Intel. Apart from that changes include
- Driver support for new *Synaptic RMI4* devices
- Freefall driver for Dell Latitude machines
- ACPI and Power Management improvments for Intel CPUs: support for new Broadwell processors has been added
- Improved support for *Sony Dualshock4* and *Sixaxus* controllers
- Better Radeon graphics support : newer kernel has better GPU VM optimizations and large PTE support for better VRAM bandwidth performance along with HDMI Deep color support and HDMI Audio fixes which will result in better experience on Radeon cards with the open-source drivers
- Fixes for the btrfs filesystem, which is soon going to replace ext4 as the default filesystem starting with openSUSE 13.2
- Support for Nokia N900’s modem is now included in the kernel
- The “blk-mq” code for better SSD performance is now feature complete
- Samsung Exynos SoCs now supports multi-cluster power management support and being built as part of a multi-platform kernel which means that one Linux kernel image is now able to run on different SoCs.
- New SoC support for the Freescale i.MX6SX, LSI Axxia AXM55xx SoCs, Samsung EXYNOS 3250/5260/5410/5420/5800, and STi STIH407.
- Better support for Jetson TK1 ARM platform
- GK20A support as the NVIDIA Kepler-based GPU within the Tegra K1 SoC
You can get the source archive from kernel.org and compile it yourself although many distributions (particularly the rolling-release ones) will have the new kernel available shortly after initial testing.
The kernel is not something similar to LibreOffice which you should grab and install. You should better wait for your distro to get 3.16 to your. I doubt any of the major distros will be updating to 3.16 any time soon as openSUSE, Fedora and Ubuntu-families are all coming out with new releases later this year and that’s when we can expect 3.16.
Abhinav Kumar contributed to this story.