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1 swift 1.1 <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
2 dertobi123 1.7 <!-- $Header: /var/cvsroot/gentoo/xml/htdocs/doc/en/gentoo-kernel.xml,v 1.6 2004/02/19 15:02:13 swift Exp $ -->
3 swift 1.1
4     <!DOCTYPE guide SYSTEM "/dtd/guide.dtd">
5     <guide link="/doc/en/gentoo-kernel.xml">
6     <title>Gentoo Linux Kernel Guide</title>
7     <author title="Author">
8     <mail link="swift@gentoo.org">Sven Vermeulen</mail>
9     </author>
10     <author title="Contributor">
11     <mail link="lostlogic@gentoo.org">Brandon Low</mail>
12     </author>
13     <author title="Editor">
14     <mail link="carl@gentoo.org">Carl Anderson</mail>
15     </author>
16     <author title="Editor">
17     <mail link="peesh@gentoo.org">Jorge Paulo</mail>
18     </author>
19    
20     <abstract>
21     This document gives you an overview on all kernelsources that Gentoo
22     provides through Portage.
23     </abstract>
24    
25 swift 1.6 <license/>
26    
27 swift 1.5 <version>0.3</version>
28     <date>February 9, 2004</date>
29 swift 1.1
30     <chapter>
31     <title>Introduction</title>
32     <section>
33     <body>
34    
35     <p>
36     As with everything else in Gentoo Linux, the philosophy of the Gentoo
37     Kernel team is to give you, the user, as much freedom of choice as
38     possible. If you take a look at the output of <c>emerge -s sources</c>
39     you see a large variety of kernels to choose from. In this document,
40     I will attempt to give you a brief rundown of the goals of each of the
41     patch sets, which we at Gentoo design, and also explain the other kernel
42     sources we make available to you.
43     </p>
44    
45     </body>
46     </section>
47     </chapter>
48    
49     <chapter>
50     <title>The Choices, Part I</title>
51     <section>
52     <title>gentoo-sources</title>
53     <body>
54    
55     <p>
56     For most users, the recommended kernel sources are the
57     <c>gentoo-sources</c>. The <c>gentoo-sources</c> package contains
58     specially tuned performance kernel patches designed to optimize tasks
59     such as compiling while listening to music and browsing the web. Most
60     of you who are new to Gentoo have probably never run a system where you
61     are regularly compiling many packages from source while you are doing your
62     normal everyday tasks on your computer.
63     You may find that if you use the <c>vanilla-sources</c> (the official
64     kernel sources released from <uri>http://www.kernel.org</uri>) normal tasks --
65     such as listening to music, moving your mouse and the like -- may appear
66     jumpy when you are compiling packages.
67     </p>
68    
69     <p>
70     The <c>gentoo-sources</c> contain an updated ACPI subsystem and are based
71     on Con Kolivas' high-performance kernel patches (<c>ck-sources</c>). We also
72     support grSecurity (a set of security-related patches with support for
73     ACLs), EVMS(2) (a highly flexible storage management filesystem with easy
74     partition resizing), JFS (IBM's high-performance filesystem), the latest
75     NTFS drivers, and more.
76     </p>
77    
78     <p>
79     Because the <c>gentoo-sources</c> are targeted at full performance, they are
80     also very good for gaming purposes.
81     </p>
82    
83     </body>
84     </section>
85     <section>
86     <title>vanilla-sources</title>
87     <body>
88    
89     <p>
90     The next kernel sources that many of you will probably be familiar with
91     as Linux users are the <c>vanilla-sources</c>. As I mentioned briefly
92 swift 1.5 above, these are the official 2.4 kernel sources released on
93 swift 1.1 <uri>http://www.kernel.org/</uri>. These sources are maintained (contrary
94     to popular belief) not by Linus Torvalds himself, but by Marcelo
95     Tosatti. Linus is the leader of active kernel development, but as he is
96 swift 1.5 only one man, he passes off the maintenance of the stable 2.4 kernel branch
97 swift 1.1 to someone he can trust to handle it once it has stabilized. Thus, Alan
98     Cox became the maintainer of the Linux-2.2 kernel series and Marcelo
99     Tosatti became the maintainer of the Linux-2.4 kernel series. This is
100     what all the other patch sets in the 2.4 series are based on. Marcelo has
101     been doing an outstanding job with its maintenance and it can be
102     counted on for stability and up-to-date (if not bleeding edge) hardware
103     support.
104     </p>
105    
106     <p>
107     <c>vanilla-sources</c> are probably the most stable sources available
108     since they are the most tested and all possible kernel sources are based
109     on them. If you don't need any of the extras that the other kernels supply
110     then the <c>vanilla-sources</c> are your thing.
111     </p>
112    
113     </body>
114     </section>
115     <section>
116 swift 1.5 <title>development-sources</title>
117     <body>
118    
119     <p>
120     The <c>development-sources</c> ebuild provides the stable 2.6 Linux kernel.
121     As opposed to what the name might suggest this kernel source is completely
122     stable and production-ready.
123     </p>
124    
125     </body>
126     </section>
127     <section>
128 swift 1.1 <title>gs-sources</title>
129     <body>
130    
131     <p>
132     For users to whom desktop interactive performance comes as a secondary
133     priority to reliability and hardware support, we have the
134     <c>gs-sources</c>. GS stands for Gentoo Stable (creative, aren't we?).
135     This patch set is tuned and tested to provide the best support for the
136     latest hardware and ensures that your mission critical servers will be
137     up when you need them. This kernel doesn't have some of the most
138     aggressive performance tuning patches from the <c>gentoo-sources</c>,
139     but rest assured, the great performance that you know and love from the
140     vanilla kernels are alive and well. Where possible and without
141     compromising stability we add server related performance patches.
142     </p>
143    
144     <p>
145     This kernel provides support for the latest ACPI subsystem, EVMS, ECC
146     (required for HA Linux systems), Encrypted Loopback devices, NTFS, Win4Lin
147     and XFS. It also contains updates for IDE, ext3 and several network cards
148     amongst other patches.
149     </p>
150    
151     <p>
152     In other words, these sources are perfect for servers and
153     High-Availability systems.
154     </p>
155    
156     <p>
157     The following USE-flags can be set to select optional patches:
158     </p>
159    
160     <table>
161     <tr><th>Flags</th><th>Description</th></tr>
162     <tr><ti>crypt</ti><ti>Apply cryptographic patches</ti></tr>
163     </table>
164    
165     </body>
166     </section>
167     <section>
168 swift 1.3 <title>gentoo-test-sources</title>
169 swift 1.1 <body>
170    
171     <p>
172 swift 1.3 <c>gentoo-test-sources</c> are what will become <c>gentoo-sources</c> after
173 swift 1.1 lots of testing and QA. Patches to the <c>gentoo-sources</c> are first
174 swift 1.3 added to <c>gentoo-test-sources</c> for testing. So if you want the
175 swift 1.1 performance of <c>gentoo-sources</c> with the most recent possible
176 swift 1.3 patches, use <c>gentoo-test-sources</c>.
177 swift 1.1 </p>
178    
179     </body>
180     </section>
181     <section>
182     <title>hardened-sources</title>
183     <body>
184    
185     <p>
186     <c>hardened-sources</c> provides patches for the various subprojects of
187 swift 1.5 Gentoo Hardened (such as support for LSM/SELinux and GRSecurity), together
188     with stability/security-enhancements. Check
189 swift 1.1 <uri>http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/hardened/</uri> for more information.
190     </p>
191    
192     <p>
193     The following USE-flags can be set to select optional patches:
194     </p>
195    
196     <table>
197     <tr><th>Flags</th><th>Description</th></tr>
198     <tr><ti>selinux</ti><ti>Substitute grSecurity with SELinux support</ti></tr>
199     </table>
200    
201     </body>
202     </section>
203     <section>
204     <title>xfs-sources</title>
205     <body>
206    
207     <p>
208     <c>xfs-sources</c> contains support for EVMS, ACPI, grSecurity and, what
209     you probably already figured out by now, the latest XFS support patches
210 dertobi123 1.7 from the XFS Development. Please note that XFS support has been merged
211     into the regular 2.4 kernel tree.
212 swift 1.1 </p>
213    
214     <p>
215     More information about XFS on <uri>http://oss.sgi.com/projects/xfs/</uri>.
216     </p>
217    
218     </body>
219     </section>
220     <section>
221     <title>Architecture dependent kernels</title>
222     <body>
223    
224     <p>
225 swift 1.5 <c>alpha-sources</c>, <c>hppa-sources</c>, <c>ia64-sources</c>,
226     <c>mips-sources</c>, <c>ppc-sources</c> and
227     <c>sparc-sources</c> are, as their names suggest, patched to run best on
228     specific architectures. They also contain some of the patches for hardware and
229     features support from the other patch sets mentioned above and below.
230 swift 1.1 </p>
231    
232     </body>
233     </section>
234     <section>
235     <title>ppc-sources-benh</title>
236     <body>
237    
238     <p>
239     The <c>ppc-sources-benh</c> ebuilds provide additional hardware
240     support for the <c>ppc-sources</c> kernel. It is slightly more
241     experimental than the <c>ppc-sources</c>.
242     </p>
243    
244     </body>
245     </section>
246     <section>
247     <title>ppc-sources-crypto</title>
248     <body>
249    
250     <p>
251     The <c>ppc-sources-crypto</c> ebuilds provide CryptoAPI
252     support for the Gentoo Linux PPC Kernel. More information about
253     CryptoAPI can be found on <uri>http://www.kerneli.org/about/</uri>.
254     </p>
255    
256     </body>
257     </section>
258     <section>
259     <title>ppc-sources-dev</title>
260     <body>
261    
262     <p>
263     The <c>ppc-sources-dev</c> packages provide the development sources for
264     <c>ppc-sources</c>. Every patch which should become part of
265     <c>ppc-sources</c> has to go through <c>ppc-sources-dev</c> first.
266     </p>
267    
268     </body>
269     </section>
270     <section>
271     <title>compaq-sources</title>
272     <body>
273    
274     <p>
275     The <c>compaq-sources</c> provide RedHat's kernel sources for Alpha,
276     maintained by Compaq.
277     </p>
278    
279     </body>
280     </section>
281     </chapter>
282    
283     <chapter>
284     <title>The Choices, Part II</title>
285     <section>
286     <body>
287    
288     <p>
289     Now I'm going to try to briefly describe some of the other
290     <path>sys-kernel/*-sources</path> which you saw scroll by when you ran
291     <c>emerge -s sources</c>. Lets take them in alphabetical order.
292     </p>
293    
294     </body>
295     </section>
296     <section>
297     <title>aa-sources</title>
298     <body>
299    
300     <p>
301     First we have <c>aa-sources</c>. This is Andrea Arcangeli's patch set.
302     Andrea is known as an amazing coder by many other kernel hackers. His
303     kernel patch set has some of the most aggressively tuned VM (Virtual
304     Memory) patches known to mankind. When I last looked, it also contained
305 swift 1.5 SGI's XFS filesystem and the O(1) scheduler by Ingo Molar (which is
306     the default scheduler for Linux 2.6).
307 swift 1.1 </p>
308    
309     <p>
310     It also provides User Mode Linux support (check out our
311     <uri link="/doc/en/uml.xml">UML Guide</uri> for more information) and
312     the latest TUX Webserver (an in-kernel webserver).
313     </p>
314    
315     <p>
316     If you have Memory Management troubles with other kernels,
317     <c>aa-sources</c> can be your solution. If you want to optimize Linux's
318     Memory Management for your system, <c>aa-sources</c> is <e>definitely</e>
319     what you need.
320     </p>
321    
322     <p>
323     Visit
324     <uri>http://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kernel/people/andrea/kernels/v2.4</uri>
325     for more information about all the patches in these kernel sources.
326     </p>
327    
328     </body>
329     </section>
330     <section>
331     <title>ck-sources</title>
332     <body>
333    
334     <p>
335     <c>ck-sources</c> is Con Kolivas's kernel patch set. This kernel is
336     <e>HIGHLY</e> tuned for desktop performance at the expense of
337     throughput and some of the scheduler's ability to prioritize
338     applications. Con Kolivas benchmarks kernels to find the best
339     combination of features for desktop use. See
340     <uri>http://kernel.kolivas.org</uri> for more information on Con and his
341     patches.
342     </p>
343    
344     </body>
345     </section>
346     <section>
347 swift 1.5 <title>gaming-sources</title>
348 swift 1.1 <body>
349    
350     <p>
351 swift 1.5 <c>gaming-sources</c> are based on <c>ck-sources</c> and are therefore
352     tuned for high performance. They also contain patches for the latest
353     game-related hardware (graphic cards, sound cards, and such).
354 swift 1.1 </p>
355    
356     <p>
357 swift 1.5 If you are a hardcore gamer, this is your choice.
358 swift 1.1 </p>
359    
360     </body>
361     </section>
362     <section>
363 swift 1.5 <title>grsec-sources</title>
364 swift 1.1 <body>
365    
366     <p>
367 swift 1.5 The <c>grsec-sources</c> kernel source is patched with the latest GRSecurity
368     updates (GRSecurity version 1.9 and up) which includes, amongst other
369     security-related patches, support for PaX.
370 swift 1.1 </p>
371    
372     </body>
373     </section>
374     <section>
375     <title>mm-sources</title>
376     <body>
377    
378     <p>
379     The <c>mm-sources</c> are based on the <c>development-sources</c> and
380     contain Andrew Morton's patch set. It assembles several other patches,
381     like ext2/3 Extended Attributes and Access Control Lists, Page Table
382     Sharing, the Orlov Allocator, non-linear mapping behaviour, etc into one
383     patch set.
384     </p>
385    
386     <p>
387     If you really want to live on the edge and you think
388     <c>development-sources</c> are for wussies, then try out
389     <c>mm-sources</c>.
390     </p>
391    
392     </body>
393     </section>
394     <section>
395     <title>openmosix-sources</title>
396     <body>
397    
398     <p>
399     The <c>openmosix-sources</c> are patched to support the openMosix system
400     (like MOSIX but Open Source). For more information see
401     <uri>http://www.openmosix.org</uri>.
402     </p>
403    
404     </body>
405     </section>
406     <section>
407 swift 1.5 <title>pac-sources</title>
408 swift 1.1 <body>
409    
410     <p>
411 swift 1.5 The <c>pac-sources</c> kernel tree is patched with Bernhard Rosenkraenzer's
412     (bero) patches.
413 swift 1.1 </p>
414    
415     </body>
416     </section>
417     <section>
418 swift 1.5 <title>planet-ccrma-sources</title>
419 swift 1.1 <body>
420    
421     <p>
422 swift 1.5 This kernel source contains the Linux Kernel source for the version of the
423     Redhat Linux Kernel modified by the Planet CCRMA (custom audio upgrade) project.
424     </p>
425    
426     <p>
427     More information can be found at <uri>http://ccrma-www.stanford.edu/</uri>.
428 swift 1.1 </p>
429    
430     </body>
431     </section>
432     <section>
433     <title>selinux-sources</title>
434     <body>
435    
436     <p>
437     <c>selinux-sources</c> from <uri>http://www.nsa.gov/selinux</uri> are
438     patches for the security conscious to support the LSM (Linux Security
439     Modules) and the Flask Security Architecture.
440     </p>
441    
442     </body>
443     </section>
444     <section>
445     <title>usermode-sources</title>
446     <body>
447    
448     <p>
449     <c>usermode-sources</c> are the User Mode Linux kernel patches. This
450     kernel is designed to allow Linux to run within Linux to run within Linux
451     to ... User Mode Linux is intended for testing and virtual server support.
452     For more information about this amazing tribute to the stability and
453     scalability of Linux, see <uri>http://user-mode-linux.sourceforge.net</uri>.
454     </p>
455    
456     <p>
457     For more information on UML and Gentoo, read the
458     <uri link="/doc/en/uml.xml">Gentoo UML Guide</uri>.
459     </p>
460    
461     </body>
462     </section>
463     <section>
464     <title>win4lin-sources</title>
465     <body>
466    
467     <p>
468     <c>win4lin-sources</c> are patched to support the userland win4lin tools
469     that allow Linux users to run many Microsoft Windows (TM) applications
470     at almost native speeds. See <uri>http://www.netraverse.com/</uri> for more
471     information.
472     </p>
473    
474     </body>
475     </section>
476     <section>
477     <title>wolk-sources</title>
478     <body>
479    
480     <p>
481     <c>wolk-sources</c> contains the <e>Working Overloaded Linux Kernel</e> from
482     <uri>http://sourceforge.net/projects/wolk</uri>. This kernel contains
483     many patches of a wide variety, all combined into the kernel with
484     extreme care. This allows you to configure nearly every one into and out
485     of the kernel at compile time -- so the kernel will work with nearly any
486     combination of the patches.
487     </p>
488    
489     <p>
490     If you need a certain combination of patches that you cannot find in other
491     kernel sources, WOLK is definitely worth a shot.
492     </p>
493    
494     </body>
495     </section>
496     </chapter>
497     </guide>

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