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Operating Systems Software Linux

Linux Kernel v2.6.23 Released 346

Posted by kdawson
from the worth-the-wait dept.
diegocgteleline.es writes "After 3 months, Linus has released Linux 2.6.23. This version includes the new and shiny CFS process scheduler, a simpler read-ahead mechanism, the lguest 'Linux-on-Linux' paravirtualization hypervisor, XEN guest support, KVM smp guest support, and variable process argument length. SLUB is now the default slab allocator, there's SELinux protection for exploiting null dereferences using mmap, XFS and ext4 improvements, PPP over L2TP support. Also the 'lumpy' reclaim algorithm, a userspace driver framework, the O_CLOEXEC file descriptor flag, splice improvements, a new fallocate() syscall, lock statistics, support for multiqueue network devices, various new drivers, and many other minor features and fixes. See the changelog for details."
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Linux Kernel v2.6.23 Released

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  • by SnoopJeDi (859765) <snoopjedi AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:27PM (#20921637)
    overlord. welcome. yay.

    On a more serious note, are these improvements dramatic, or is story featured just because it's the newest Lolnus kernel?
  • Boom. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:28PM (#20921639)

    paravirtualization hypervisor.
    Sounds like one hell of a Machine Gun.
    • Re:Boom. (Score:5, Funny)

      by Fuji Kitakyusho (847520) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:33PM (#20921719)
      Don't cross the streams. It would be "bad".
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by germansausage (682057)
        I'm fuzzy on the whole good/bad thing. What do you mean, "bad"?
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light.
    • by buswolley (591500)
      Sound like something Ruby the Galactic Gumshoe would be carrying.

      http://www.zbs.org/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=2&products_id=34

      That was a classic.. I should listen to that ZBS production again.

    • Re:Boom. (Score:5, Funny)

      by MoxFulder (159829) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:01AM (#20922553) Homepage

      ... the 'lumpy' reclaim algorithm, a userspace driver framework, the O_CLOEXEC file descriptor flag, splice improvements, a new fallocate() syscall, lock statistics, support for multiqueue network devices, various new drivers, and many other minor features and fixes. See the changelog [CC] for details."
      OMG!!!!!! The O_CLOEXEC file descriptor flag is coming out!!! My friend Tiffany is, like, *totally* gonna freak when she hears about it.
  • SO EXCITED! (Score:3, Funny)

    by ILuvRamen (1026668) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:29PM (#20921661)
    I'm so excited, I wish I could have stayed up until midnight in a huge line for it! HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO SLEEP NOW?!
  • by nxtr (813179) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:30PM (#20921673)
    I think I'll take the opportunity to upgrade to 2.2.26; I don't waste my time with unproven technology.
  • by User 956 (568564) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:31PM (#20921685) Homepage
    After 3 months, Linus has released Linux 2.6.23. This version includes the new and shiny CFS process scheduler, a simpler read-ahead mechanism, the lguest 'Linux-on-Linux' paravirtualization hypervisor, XEN guest support

    Yes, what they don't mention is that the XEN "guest support" is in the form of a crowbar.
  • by speaker of the truth (1112181) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:31PM (#20921697)
    I RTFA and it didn't mention whether or not it was released under GPL v2 or v3. Does anyone know?
    • by ZachPruckowski (918562) <zachary.pruckowski@gmail.com> on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @12:10AM (#20922081)
      Guys, that's an honest question from the new user! Don't slam on the Troll mod the second someone says GPL3 and Linux in the same post!

      For the foreseeable future, Linux will be under the GPLv2 license. A lot of Linux code is only available under that license, and isn't forward compatible without developer permission. Given that many Linux devs either won't give permission or can't be located (died, stopped contributing, whatever), relicensing will be a major effort, even if leaders were so inclined. Basically, if Linux goes GPLv3, you'll hear about it at least 6 months in advance, and probably weekly during those 6 months if you read Slashdot.
      • Thanks. A straight forward answer to a straight forward question.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CandyMan (15493)
        Sun will probably publish Solaris under the GPL v3, so everyone will have a choice of tree free kernels: *BSD under BSD, Linux under GPL v2 and Solaris under V3. I think there is a fair chances that some developers might want to dual-license their code from now on. I am thinking of someone publishing their new filesystem code under both GPL versions so both projects can use it.

        Relicensing existing code might be too strenuous, but if many developers decide to follow this dual-licensing approach, the relicens
  • by kcbanner (929309) *
    So has anyone done any "real" benchmarks yet? Hmm? Hmm? What would the robot do!
  • I love my Thinkpad (Score:3, Interesting)

    by wellingj (1030460) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:37PM (#20921761)
    thinkpad-acpi: enable more hotkeys, add input device support to hotkey subdriver

    Woot!
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by FauxPasIII (75900)
      > thinkpad-acpi: enable more hotkeys, add input device support to hotkey subdriver

      Although it's not merged yet, Thinkpad owners should also check out this project:

      http://tpctl.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]

      Using the tp_smapi driver I can, among other things, clamp my battery charger to
      stop at 70%, which makes the battery last a _lot_ longer. =)
  • by Myria (562655) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @11:54PM (#20921911)

    In multi-threaded code (or more correctly: all code using clone() with CLONE_FILES) there's a race when exec'ing (see commit link for details). In some applications this can happen frequently. Take a web browser. One thread opens a file and another thread starts, say, an external PDF viewer. The result can even be a security issue if that open file descriptor refers to a sensitive file and the external program can somehow be tricked into using that descriptor. 2.6.23 includes the O_CLOEXEC ("close-on-exec") fd flag on open() and recvmsg() to avoid this problem.


    Yes, this is a good thing. However, they seem to have missed some: sockets and pipes. Sockets are not close-on-exec by default, so you may pass a sensitive socket to a child.

    Windows NT has the same problem: sockets are inheritable by default until you call SetHandleInformation to disable inheritance. Other handles' inheritability is selected at open/create time.

    Luckily, there is a workaround for it, if not pretty: use a reader/writer lock with opening handles as writers and forks as readers.

    By the way, the linked changelog on kernelnewbies.org has a bad link for the "recommended LWN article".

    For the SELinux thing against null pointer attacks, won't that break DOSemu?
    • by Jeffrey Baker (6191) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @12:11AM (#20922095)
      You needn't worry about the kernel in this case, because the applications aren't paying any attention. Mozilla happily passes all open file descriptors (sockets, pipes, and files of any kind) to subprocesses like Adobe Reader. There's been a bug open on it for eons. Other applications have the same problems. It may be convenient to have O_CLOEXEC in open(2) calls, but it won't help of the application writers don't know what they are doing, or if they have "abstracted" their platform interaction to such a degree that they can no longer interact with any platform services (*cough* jvm *cough*).
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Jaxoreth (208176)

      Sockets are not close-on-exec by default, so you may pass a sensitive socket to a child.
      No, because sockets are unbound when created. If you set FD_CLOEXEC prior to calling other socket routines, the worst that happens is the child gets a fresh socket that's not connected to anything.

      Pipe endpoints are bound together when created, so that might be a problem.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by kasperd (592156)

        If you set FD_CLOEXEC prior to calling other socket routines, the worst that happens is the child gets a fresh socket that's not connected to anything.

        If the child already got a file descriptor for the socket, it doesn't matter what state it was in at that exact time. The file descriptor does not go away, the child will still have the file descriptor by the time you are doing something sensitive on that socket. Looking back I think it was a design mistake to make file descriptors inherited across exec by de

  • by tjstork (137384) <todd...bandrowsky@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @12:03AM (#20922023) Homepage Journal
    fallocate() is a new system call which will allow applications to preallocate space to any file(s) in a file system. Applications can get a guarantee of space for particular file(s) - even if later the system becomes full

    I was about to go and make fun of Linux for creating a feature that's been around in Windows for quite a while - take your pick of SetFilePointer or sparse files. Yes, yes, I understand that reserving space for a file is not the same as growing it and not using that space. Twas meant to be a troll....But, it turns out that a bit of googling reveals that sparse files under Windows are not all that they are cracked up to be:

    http://www.flexhex.com/docs/articles/sparse-files.phtml [flexhex.com]

  • Userspace drivers? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NereusRen (811533) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:00AM (#20922545)

    a userspace driver framework
    I have a question for someone better-informed than myself: Does this mean we are a step closer to not having to recompile nvidia's video drivers after installing a new kernel?
    • by QuantumG (50515) <qg@biodome.org> on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:09AM (#20922619) Homepage Journal
      Short answer: no.

      Long answer: if NVIDIA ever makes open source drivers, they will almost definitely be kernel space drivers. Apparently this is in the works, same with ATI, but I'll believe it when it happens. It would be possible for some bored hacker to take the NVIDIA binary blobs and make a userspace driver from them. This driver could be legally distributed with the NVIDIA binary blobs (probably). And yes, this would mean that recompiling the drivers for a new kernel would not be necessary.. and it would also mean that the kernel wouldn't be "tainted" by using this driver (maybe).

      I, personally, think the stability and security advantages of running binary blobs in userspace drivers outweighs the possible performance hit (no-one has measured the performance hit, yet), so it's a good idea. But, ya know, I've got some other stuff to do...

  • by ubiquitin (28396) * on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:07AM (#20922607) Homepage Journal
    An exploit with feature-complete proof of concept [milw0rm.com] was released for x86_64 linux kernel ia32syscall emulation by cliph at isec in Poland. Exploit code was wildly popular on milw0rm [milw0rm.com], indicating that this local exploit has lots of potential.
  • Hot (Score:5, Funny)

    by MrYotsuya (27522) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:22AM (#20922717)
    the lguest 'Linux-on-Linux' paravirtualization hypervisor

    Linux on linux, that's so hot!
  • 1995 (Score:3, Funny)

    by ceroklis (1083863) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @01:45AM (#20922837)
    FTF Changelog:

    2.11. UIO
    Click to read a recommended LWN article about UIO
    UIO is a framework that allows to implement drivers in userspace.

    Telling readers that links are meant to be clicked is so 1995!
  • by robo_mojo (997193) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @05:04AM (#20923833)
    Upgrade to 2.6.23 right now? Are you out of your mind? Everyone knows you're supposed to wait for the SP1 release before upgrading to a new operating system!
  • Dreamcast support (Score:3, Interesting)

    by 00_NOP (559413) on Wednesday October 10, 2007 @06:10AM (#20924151) Homepage
    The new kernel also includes ALSA support for the Dreamcast sound device (for the first time - an out of mainline OSS driver did/does exist for 2.4).

    More dreamcast support is on the way - expect some more stuff in 2.6.24 and 2.6.25 and I (the author of the code) would love to hear from willing testers, etc

Everything that can be invented has been invented. -- Charles Duell, Director of U.S. Patent Office, 1899

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