"Much attention goes toward mainline kernel releases, but
relatively few users are actually running those kernels. Instead,
they run kernels provided by their distributors, and those kernels,
in turn, are based off the stable kernel series. The practice of
releasing stable kernels has been going for well over five years
now, so perhaps it's time to look back at how it has been
"Back in March 2005, the community was discussing ways of
getting important fixes out to users of mainline releases. There
was talk of maintaining a separate tree containing nothing but
fixes; Linus, at the time, thought that any such attempt was doomed
"I'll tell you what the problem is: I don't think you'll find
anybody to do the parallel "only trivial patches" tree. They'll go
crazy in a couple of weeks. Why? Because it's a _damn_ hard
problem. Where do you draw the line? What's an acceptable patch?
And if you get it wrong, people will complain _very_ loudly, since
by now you've "promised" them a kernel that is better than the
mainline. In other words: there's almost zero glory, there are no
interesting problems, and there will absolutely be people who claim
that you're a dick-head and worse, probably on a weekly basis."
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