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vanilla-sources is now unsupported, moved/changed 2.4 kernel info, all by request of Daniel Drake (dsd) on IRC

1 <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
2 <!-- $Header: /var/cvsroot/gentoo/xml/htdocs/doc/en/gentoo-kernel.xml,v 1.44 2006/11/29 15:48:57 nightmorph Exp $ -->
3
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="dsd@gentoo.org">Daniel Drake</mail>
15 </author>
16 <author title="Editor">
17 <mail link="carl@gentoo.org">Carl Anderson</mail>
18 </author>
19 <author title="Editor">
20 <mail link="peesh@gentoo.org">Jorge Paulo</mail>
21 </author>
22 <author title="Editor">
23 <mail link="bennyc@gentoo.org">Benny Chuang</mail>
24 </author>
25 <author title="Editor">
26 <mail link="greg_g@gentoo.org">Gregorio Guidi</mail>
27 </author>
28 <author title="Editor">
29 <mail link="fox2mike@gentoo.org">Shyam Mani</mail>
30 </author>
31
32 <abstract>
33 This document gives you an overview on all kernel sources that Gentoo
34 provides through Portage.
35 </abstract>
36
37 <!-- The content of this document is licensed under the CC-BY-SA license -->
38 <!-- See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5 -->
39 <license/>
40
41 <version>1.15</version>
42 <date>2006-11-30</date>
43
44 <chapter>
45 <title>Introduction</title>
46 <section>
47 <body>
48
49 <p>
50 As with everything else in Gentoo Linux, the philosophy of the Gentoo
51 Kernel team is to give you, the user, as much freedom of choice as
52 possible. If you take a look at the output of <c>emerge -s sources</c>
53 you see a large variety of kernels to choose from. In this document,
54 I will attempt to give you a brief rundown of the goals of each of the
55 patch sets, which we at Gentoo design, and also explain the other kernel
56 sources we make available to you.
57 </p>
58
59 <p>
60 Some of the more uncommon system architectures are not fully compatible with
61 Linux 2.6, and some users prefer the tried-and-tested Linux 2.4 kernel. However,
62 please note that Linux 2.4 is currently not being developed further - only bug
63 and security fixes are being included in the newer releases. If you are able to,
64 we suggest that you upgrade to Linux 2.6. You may find the <uri
65 link="/doc/en/migration-to-2.6.xml">migration document</uri> useful.
66 </p>
67
68
69 </body>
70 </section>
71 </chapter>
72
73 <chapter>
74 <title>Supported kernel packages</title>
75 <section>
76 <title>genkernel</title>
77 <body>
78
79 <p>
80 <c>Genkernel</c> is a kernel toolset that can be used to autodetect your
81 hardware and configure your kernel automatically. This is usually recommended
82 for users who do not feel comfortable about compiling a kernel manually.
83 </p>
84
85 <p>
86 For more information, please read the <uri link="/doc/en/genkernel.xml">Gentoo
87 Linux Genkernel Guide</uri>.
88 </p>
89
90 </body>
91 </section>
92 <section>
93 <title>General purpose: gentoo-sources</title>
94 <body>
95
96 <p>
97 For most users, we recommend the <c>gentoo-sources</c> kernel. Since the
98 2005.0 release, Gentoo Linux uses 2.6 as the default kernel. Unless you are
99 specifically using the 2.4 profile, <c>gentoo-sources</c> will be a 2.6 kernel
100 on <e>most</e> architectures.
101 </p>
102
103 <p>
104 <c>gentoo-sources</c> is a kernel based on Linux 2.6, lightly patched to fix
105 security problems, kernel bugs, and to increase compatibility with the more
106 uncommon system architectures. Linux 2.6 is the current official stable kernel
107 tree, and development is progressing rapidly. For highest performance, best
108 hardware support, and its large new feature set, we recommend 2.6 over its older
109 2.4 counterpart.
110 </p>
111
112 <p>
113 The 2.4 <c>gentoo-sources</c> kernel patches are similar to those included in
114 its 2.6 counterpart, plus a number of patches designed to add functionality and
115 improve performance.
116 </p>
117
118 <p>
119 The <c>gentoo-sources</c> package absorbs most of the resources of the Gentoo
120 kernel team. They are brought to you by a group of talented developers, which
121 can count on the expertise of popular kernel hacker Greg Kroah-Hartman,
122 maintainer of udev and responsible for the USB and PCI subsystems of the
123 official Linux kernel.
124 </p>
125
126 </body>
127 </section>
128 <section>
129 <title>For servers: hardened-sources and rsbac-sources</title>
130 <body>
131
132 <p>
133 <c>hardened-sources</c> is based on the official Linux kernel and is targeted
134 at our users running Gentoo on server systems. It provides patches for the
135 various subprojects of Gentoo Hardened (such as support for
136 <uri link="http://www.nsa.gov/selinux/">LSM/SELinux</uri> and
137 <uri link="http://grsecurity.net">grsecurity</uri>), together with
138 stability/security-enhancements. Like <c>gentoo-sources</c> it comes in 2.6
139 and 2.4 versions. Check <uri>http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/hardened/</uri> for
140 more information.
141 </p>
142
143 <p>
144 <c>rsbac-sources</c> contains patches to use Rule Set Based Access Controls
145 (<uri link="http://www.rsbac.org">RSBAC</uri>) and comes in 2.4 and 2.6
146 flavours. It is maintained by the <uri link="/proj/en/hardened/rsbac/">RSBAC
147 project</uri>, a sub-project of Gentoo Hardened.
148 </p>
149
150 <impo>
151 These kernels provide powerful patches for enhanced security. Please read the
152 <uri link="/proj/en/hardened/">documentation</uri> before you use them.
153 </impo>
154
155 </body>
156 </section>
157 <section>
158 <title>Architecture dependent kernels</title>
159 <body>
160
161 <p>
162 <c>hppa-sources</c>, <c>mips-sources</c>, <c>sh-sources</c> <c>sparc-sources</c>
163 and <c>xbox-sources</c> are, as their names suggest, patched to run best on
164 specific architectures. They also contain some of the patches for hardware and
165 features support from the other patch sets mentioned above and below.
166 </p>
167
168 </body>
169 </section>
170 </chapter>
171
172 <chapter>
173 <title>Unsupported kernel packages</title>
174 <section>
175 <body>
176
177 <p>
178 Now I'm going to try to briefly describe some of the other
179 <path>sys-kernel/*-sources</path> which you saw scroll by when you ran
180 <c>emerge -s sources</c>. Lets take them in alphabetical order. These
181 kernels are provided as a courtesy only and the various patch sets are not
182 supported by the Gentoo team.
183 </p>
184
185 </body>
186 </section>
187 <section>
188 <title>ck-sources</title>
189 <body>
190
191 <p>
192 <c>ck-sources</c> is Con Kolivas's kernel patch set. This patchset is
193 primarily designed to improve system responsiveness and interactivity and is
194 configurable for varying workloads (from servers to desktops). The patchset is
195 also quite mature and has been put through numerous iterations of development
196 and tuning. The emphasis of each release is on stability and security. Support
197 and information is available at <uri>http://kernel.kolivas.org</uri> and in
198 <c>#ck</c> on <c>irc.oftc.net</c>.
199 </p>
200
201 </body>
202 </section>
203 <section>
204 <title>git-sources</title>
205 <body>
206
207 <p>
208 The <c>git-sources</c> package tracks daily snapshots of the upstream
209 development kernel tree. You should run these kernels if you are interested in
210 kernel development or testing. Bugreports should go to the <uri
211 link="http://bugme.osdl.org/">Linux Kernel Bug Tracker</uri> or LKML (Linux
212 Kernel Mailing List).
213 </p>
214
215 </body>
216 </section>
217 <section>
218 <title>mm-sources</title>
219 <body>
220
221 <p>
222 The <c>mm-sources</c> are based on the <c>vanilla-sources</c> and contain
223 Andrew Morton's patch set. They include the experimental and bleeding-edge
224 features that are going to be included in the official kernel (or that are
225 going to be rejected because they set your box on fire). They are known to be
226 always moving at a fast pace and can change radically from one week to the
227 other; kernel hackers use them as a testing ground for new stuff.
228 </p>
229
230 <p>
231 If you really want to live on the edge and you think
232 <c>vanilla-sources</c> are for wussies, then try out
233 <c>mm-sources</c>. Be warned that this kernel is highly experimental and
234 doesn't always work as expected.
235 </p>
236
237 </body>
238 </section>
239 <section>
240 <title>openmosix-sources</title>
241 <body>
242
243 <p>
244 The <c>openmosix-sources</c> are patched to support the openMosix system
245 (a cluster oriented kernel patchset like MOSIX but Open Source). For more
246 information see <uri>http://www.openmosix.org</uri>.
247 </p>
248
249 </body>
250 </section>
251 <section>
252 <title>openvz-sources</title>
253 <body>
254
255 <p>
256 OpenVZ is a server virtualization solution built on Linux. OpenVZ creates
257 isolated, secure virtual private servers (VPSs) or virtual environments on a
258 single physical server enabling better server utilization and ensuring that
259 applications do not conflict. For more information, see
260 <uri>http://www.openvz.org</uri>.
261 </p>
262
263 </body>
264 </section>
265 <section>
266 <title>suspend2-sources</title>
267 <body>
268
269 <p>
270 The <c>suspend2-sources</c> are patched with both genpatches
271 which includes the patches found in gentoo-sources, and <uri
272 link="http://www.suspend2.net">Software Suspend 2</uri> which is a new
273 and improved implementation of suspend-to-disk for the Linux kernel.
274 </p>
275
276 <p>
277 This kernel is recommended for laptop users who often rely on being able
278 to suspend their laptop and resume work elsewhere.
279 </p>
280
281 </body>
282 </section>
283 <section>
284 <title>usermode-sources</title>
285 <body>
286
287 <p>
288 <c>usermode-sources</c> are the User Mode Linux kernel patches. This
289 kernel is designed to allow Linux to run within Linux to run within Linux
290 to ... User Mode Linux is intended for testing and virtual server support.
291 For more information about this amazing tribute to the stability and
292 scalability of Linux, see <uri>http://user-mode-linux.sourceforge.net</uri>.
293 </p>
294
295 <p>
296 For more information on UML and Gentoo, read the
297 <uri link="/doc/en/uml.xml">Gentoo UML Guide</uri>.
298 </p>
299
300 </body>
301 </section>
302 <section>
303 <title>vanilla-sources</title>
304 <body>
305
306 <p>
307 The next kernel sources that many of you will probably be familiar with as Linux
308 users are the <c>vanilla-sources</c>. These are the official kernel sources
309 released on <uri>http://www.kernel.org/</uri>. Please note that we do not patch
310 these kernels at all - these are purely for people who wish to run a completely
311 unmodified Linux kernel. We recommend that you use <c>gentoo-sources</c>
312 instead.
313 </p>
314
315 <p>
316 Similar to <c>gentoo-sources</c>, two versions of the kernel can be found
317 under this package: 2.4 and 2.6.
318 </p>
319
320 <p>
321 Linux 2.4 is maintained by Marcelo Tosatti. Linus Torvalds, the original
322 creator of Linux, handed maintainership of the Linux 2.4 branch over to
323 Marcelo when Linus went off to start developing the newer 2.6 kernel tree.
324 Marcelo has done a fine job of keeping 2.4 stable and secure, and is now
325 only accepting security and bug fixes into the 2.4 kernel tree. Actual
326 development happens in the Linux 2.6 kernel tree.
327 </p>
328
329 <p>
330 Linux 2.6 is maintained by Andrew Morton, who works closely with Linus
331 Torvalds to deliver a fast, powerful, and feature-packed Linux kernel.
332 Development is happening at incredible pace and this kernel tree is now very
333 mature.
334 </p>
335
336 </body>
337 </section>
338 </chapter>
339
340 <chapter>
341 <title>Previously provided kernel packages</title>
342 <section>
343 <title>aa-sources</title>
344 <body>
345
346 <p>
347 <c>aa-sources</c> was a heavily modified kernel with all kinds of patches.
348 The upstream maintainer has stopped releasing kernel patchsets, this package
349 was removed as it went out of date.
350 </p>
351
352 </body>
353 </section>
354 <section>
355 <title>alpha-sources</title>
356 <body>
357
358 <p>
359 <c>alpha-sources</c> was a 2.4 kernel with patches applied to improve hardware
360 compatibility for the Alpha architecture. These patches have been developed
361 and included in the mainline kernel. Alpha users can now run any recent kernel
362 with no need for extra patches.
363 </p>
364
365 </body>
366 </section>
367 <section>
368 <title>development-sources</title>
369 <body>
370
371 <p>
372 <c>development-sources</c>, the official 2.6 kernel from kernel.org, can now
373 be found under the <c>vanilla-sources</c> package.
374 </p>
375
376 </body>
377 </section>
378 <section>
379 <title>gentoo-dev-sources</title>
380 <body>
381
382 <p>
383 <c>gentoo-dev-sources</c>, a 2.6 kernel patched with bug, security and
384 stability fixes, can now be found under the <c>gentoo-sources</c> package.
385 </p>
386
387 </body>
388 </section>
389 <section>
390 <title>grsec-sources</title>
391 <body>
392
393 <p>
394 The <c>grsec-sources</c> kernel source used to be patched with the latest
395 grsecurity updates (grsecurity version 2.0 and up) which included, amongst
396 other security-related patches, support for PaX. As grsecurity patches are
397 included in <c>hardened-sources</c>, this package is no longer in Portage.
398 </p>
399
400 </body>
401 </section>
402 <section>
403 <title>hardened-dev-sources</title>
404 <body>
405
406 <p>
407 <c>hardened-dev-sources</c> can now be found under the <c>hardened-sources</c>
408 package.
409 </p>
410
411 </body>
412 </section>
413 <section>
414 <title>rsbac-dev-sources</title>
415 <body>
416
417 <p>
418 The <c>rsbac-dev-sources</c> kernels can now be found under the
419 <c>rsbac-sources</c> package.
420 </p>
421
422 </body>
423 </section>
424 <section>
425 <title>selinux-sources</title>
426 <body>
427
428 <p>
429 <c>selinux-sources</c>, a 2.4 kernel including lots of security enhancements,
430 has been obsoleted by security development in the 2.6 tree. SELinux
431 functionality can be found in the <c>hardened-sources</c> package.
432 </p>
433
434 </body>
435 </section>
436 <section>
437 <title>uclinux-sources</title>
438 <body>
439
440 <p>
441 The <c>uclinux-sources</c> are meant for CPUs without MMUs as well as embedded
442 devices. For more information, see <uri>http://www.uclinux.org</uri>. Lack of
443 security patches as well as hardware to test on were the reasons this is no longer
444 in the tree.
445 </p>
446
447 </body>
448 </section>
449 <section>
450 <title>win4lin-sources</title>
451 <body>
452
453 <p>
454 <c>win4lin-sources</c> were patched to support the userland win4lin tools
455 that allow Linux users to run many Microsoft Windows (TM) applications
456 at almost native speeds. This was removed due to security issues.
457 </p>
458
459 </body>
460 </section>
461 </chapter>
462 </guide>

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