kernel weekly news – 25.02.2012

Posted: February 25, 2012 in kernel


-Benjamin Herrenschmidt updates powerpc, Martin Schwidefsky
updates s390 and Greg KH announces kernels 3.2.7 and 3.0.22.

-Linus Torvalds announces -rc4:

So it’s almost getting to be a habit: yet another -rc release that is
delayed by a couple of days.

However, this time I actually have an excuse. Well, an excuse other
than my usual “Sue me, I’m disorganized and forgot”.

This time the reason for the delay is that we spent several days
chasing down a nasty floating point state corruption that happens on
32-bit x86 – but only if you have a modern CPU (why are you using
32-bit kernels?) that supports the AES-NI instructions. And then you
have to enable support for them *and* use a wireless driver that uses
it. The most likely reason for that is using the mac80211
infrastructure with WPA with AES encryption (ie usually WPA2)

Anyway, if you are using wireless networking, have a modern CPU that
you cripple by running in 32-bit mode, and have seen odd FP-related
crashes with (the usual symptoms seem to be flash problems in the
browser or the mouse in X suddenly moving to a corner or similar, but
anything goes, really), that might be due to this.

The workaround is either to just compile a 64-bit kernel (hey, you can
leave your 32-bit userland alone if you are so emotionally attached to
last century) or upgrade to 3.3-rc4.

Sure, we’ll backport the patches to -stable too for the boring people
who don’t want to help test development kernels. But wouldn’t it be
nice to have the bug fixed *and* feel like you are helping development
by testing shiny new -rc kernels?

You know you want to.

Anyway, while I’m just blathering about the FPU state fix (because
that was what *I* was doing), other people worked on other things too.
So -rc4 also does various other things, like remove the old stale
gma500 staging driver that got properly merged. Or remove the old
pohmelfs staging code, since that will get a complete rewrite.

Or if you’re not interested in the big patches, but in the small ones
that actually matter to you, try to find them in the shortlog below.
There are various network driver updates, some ecryptfs and xfs
updates, ARM fixes, sha512 stack usage fixes, yadda yadda. Something
for almost everyone, I’m sure.

Go forth and test.

-John W. Linville has wireless updates, Trond Myklebust has four
bugfixes for the NFS client, Greg Ungerer has important fixes for m68knommu,
namely ColdFire-based ones, Ohad Ben-Cohen has rpmsg updates and
Dave Airlie announces “Intel, radeon, exynos fixes”.

-Greg KH announces USB fixes for -rc4, Benjamin Herrenschmidt has PowerPC fixes,
Nicolas Ferre announces the first at91 cleanup series for 3.4, Takashi Iwai
has sound updates for -rc5, Ben Myers has a XFS update for 3.3, Paul Mundt has sh
and rmobile fixes for -rc5, ….

-….and with this, folks, ends this week’s news. See you again in March.


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