back to article Linus Torvalds releases Linux 6.6 after running out of excuses for further work

After a typically calm development process, Linus Torvalds has given the world a new cut of the Linux kernel – version 6.6 to be precise. The penguin emperor last week worried that release candidate 7 was "certainly on the bigger side of our rc7 releases in the 6.x series" and "bigger than I'd have liked it to be" – but also …

  1. Dostoevsky

    Yaaaaaay in-kernel network vulnerabilities! Can't wait to push patches for that!

    1. stiine Silver badge

      They'll be available for Kernel 7.1

    2. Grogan Silver badge

      That's actually been in the kernel for a long time now and has gone through some security fixes along the way. It's just new work that's being reported.

      For full use you'd want Samba (I don't like that and don't have it on my system as it requires frequent updates and becomes a dependency), but I use ksmbd just for occasional file copying with windows computers. A kernel module and a simple program for bringing it up (and a simple smb.conf). The tools don't change much, the business end is the module that gets updated with the kernel. It has to be manually loaded (udev won't do it even on invocation) so it's not going to be in the kernel unless I run my wrapper script.

      I'm glad to have it.

    3. theblackhand

      The thing that always amazes me about Linux topics is the crossover between "I use Linux because of how flexible and powerful" it is and those that dislike any new features even if they plan not to use them.

      Improved SMB performance means faster NAS/filer performance from appliances and various storage distributions for home and business users and I guess we will see if your security fears materialise based on these features.

      If you don't use it, switch it off...

  2. Steve Graham

    Being retired now and just a hobbyist, I like to have a very recent kernel on my main machine. It's not doing anything vital. But I do always wait for the x.x.1 release or later.

    (And I will certainly not be including the SMB nonsense.)

    1. david 12 Silver badge

      The NFS system developed by SUN had two primary aims: not be the same as the IBM file-share protocol, and not be as feature-rich as the IBM file-share protocol.

      "Not being the same as the most popular local-network file-share protocol" still appeals to a certain class of people, well represented here. And the lack of features works as long as you don't need those features, so it's ok for large multi-user systems where you are deliberately trying to limit functionality.

      1. billbo914

        Which IBM filesystem?

        Which IBM filesystem was NFS a response to?

      2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        What "IBM file-share protocol" are you referring to? NFS first became available in 1984 (NFSv2). If AFS was even running then, I'm pretty sure it wasn't deployed outside CMU; I don't think the other Project Andrew sites got it until some years later. IBM's NetBEUI (which implemented the Sytek NetBIOS API over Token Ring LLC) came out in 1985. Novell Netware 2.0 with NetBIOS over IPX/SPX came out in '86.

        SMB was designed at IBM in 1983, but there weren't any actual usable implementations for a couple of years.

        NFS certainly has its problems, particularly NFSv2 with its (by design) statelessness. I'd call it inferior to AFS, in a number of ways. But SMB, both SMBv1 and SMBv2, are pretty nasty protocols, with a lot of unnecessary complication and for SMBv1 a lot of chatter. SMBv1 was designed as extending the MS-DOS disk I/O API over the network, which was a much dirtier starting point than ONC RPC (for NFS) and a much less capable one than AFS's VICE (which I believe was based on, or at least inspired by, Apollo NCS).

  3. Jonte Monkey

    Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

    Whilst the video may have aged badly - it is still a cracking song.

    1. Zolko Silver badge

      Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

      The 6-th stable upgrade of this kernel is going to be cult

      1. Roger Kynaston

        Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

        What happens we the seventh release of the seventh patch of the seventh version comes along?

        1. Liam Proven (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

          Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

          Very little, I suspect. ;-)

          1. Zolko Silver badge

            Re: 7-th son of a 7-th son

            Yeah, not something to have fear of

        2. TheMaskedMan Silver badge

          Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

          "What happens we the seventh release of the seventh patch of the seventh version comes along?"

          We get to play with magic?

          1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

            Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

            We get to play with magic?

            Nah, that will be at 8-8-8 (PTrerry).

        3. that one in the corner Silver badge

          Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

          It will have a vulnerability to half a brick stuffed into a sock.

    2. Bartholomew

      Re: Iron Maiden - Number of the beast

      But, but, but the number of the beast is currently 616 and has been since 2005. Before then it was accepted to be 666.

      And the 6.1 kernel which is currently a long term support kernel is long past 6.1.6 (2023-01-14 10:33:46 +0100), according to it is up to 6.1.60 (at the time of writing this comment).

  4. ilpr

    Scheduler changes

    The Bergamo performance might have improved thanks to other changes in the kernel (less migrations from near-idle cores on EPYC-CPUs). EEVDF mainly helps with task latencies and not specifically any CPU specific things. EEVDF is there to replace CFS scheduler and reduces the amount of heuristics that has accumulated.

  5. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge


    No Turkeys in this release

  6. Digital placebo

    Created an account just because iron maiden was mentioned:-)

    With regards to the next iteration I'm going throw Van Halen into the mix with the seventh seal...

    Not dissing iron maiden and certainly not dissing any form of music nonmetally ...

    In praise of non metal music I wish you all a lovely day, lovely day , lovely day... please don't send a bill my account may whither

  7. Omnipresent Bronze badge


    before the apple event. nice work.

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