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April 4, 2024

End of Life for Linux Kernel 6.7: Upgrade to Linux Kernel 6.8 Now Required

Greg Kroah-Hartman, a notable figure in Linux kernel maintenance, confirmed the cessation of life (EOL) for the Linux 6.7 kernel range today, encouraging users to switch to the newest Linux 6.8 kernel as soon as feasible.

Linux kernel 6.7 was launched by Linus Torvalds on January 7th, 2024, and it brought with it thrilling new features such as the bcachefs file system, a copy-on-write (COW) file system for Linux-based operating systems that vies with the advanced features provided by the Btrfs and ZFS file systems.

The Linux 6.7 also brought with it support for NVIDIA’s GSP firmware in the Nouveau open source graphics driver, new functionality for the Btrfs file system, upgrades for the EXT4 file system, a range of network enhancements, and a host of new and improved drivers for superior hardware support.

Only twelve maintenance patches later, the Linux 6.7 kernel range is now designated as EOL (End of Life), indicating it will no longer receive fixes for bugs and security. Users still on the Linux kernel 6.7 are meanwhile urged to upgrade to Linux kernel 6.8 versions.

“Note, this is the LAST 6.7.y kernel to be released. This branch is now end-of-life. Please move to the 6.8.y branch at this point in time,” said Greg Kroah-Hartman in the mailing list announcement for Linux 6.7.12, which is the last maintenance update in the series.

Linux kernel 6.8 was released last month on March 10th, 2024, with new features like LAM (Linear Address Masking) virtualization support for KVM, a new Intel Xe DRM driver, fscrypt support for CephFS, a multi-size THP (Transparent Huge Pages) sysfs interface, and more.

Linux 6.8 is already powering various popular GNU/Linux distributions, such as Arch Linux and openSUSE Tumbleweed, and it will be the default kernel in the upcoming Fedora Linux 40 and Ubuntu 24.04 LTS releases.

Linux kernel 6.8 was also updated today to version 6.8.3, which will soon make its way into the stable software repositories of popular GNU/Linux distributions. Linux kernel 6.8.3 includes quite some changes with 4772 insertions and 2551 deletions in 481 changed files, so it’s a highly recommended update.

However, I should warn you that while Linux 6.8 comes with bleeding-edge features, it will also be short-lived and supported for only a couple of months. Therefore, if you’re looking for long-term support for your kernel, you should consider moving to one of the many LTS kernel series, Linux 6.6 LTS being the latest, which will be supported until December 2026.

Last updated 9 hours ago

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