Re: too much untested code in new kernels

Andrew E. Mileski (
Thu, 2 Jan 1997 16:50:25 -0500 (EST)

> When I see things like this, it makes me very hesitant to run new
> kernels. I see 1400 of lines of changes in the 2.1.18 VFS and EXT2
> code. Have these changes been tested? I don't know! Are they getting
> tested right now? Not very much, because everyone who uses modules is
> struggling with the incomplete module code that was also introduced in
> 2.1.18.

All v2.1.* kernels are EXPERIMENTAL. The developers think they work,
but don't guarantee anything. Use at your own risk. If you can't handle
this, stick to the v2.0.* PRODUCTION kernels.

Note: During the last round of experimental kernels, I too couldn't
boot a bunch (v1.3.9* to be exact). It comes with the territory.

> Please, code authors, test your patches before you send them to Linus.

They should indeed, but they tend to be human and are not infallible.
It is _OUR_ job, you me and everyone else, to make sure bugs don't
make it into production kernels. An impossible dream, but that doesn't

> And please, Linus, if a patch has not been tested to your satisfaction,
> tell the author to test it some more before you accept it.

How is Linus supposed to know?

Bad code in the kernel is not Linus's fault - he just assembles the patches.
Linus has control over new code entering the kernel, but he doesn't read
diffs line by line. Things can, and have, slipped by him. No one faults
Linus for this. I'm amazed he even manages to cope as well as he has.

Thanks to people like you, bugs in the kernel are soon ferreted out :-)
Please don't stop reporting bugs.

Andrew E. Mileski
Linux Plug-and-Play Kernel Project
XFree86 Matrox Team