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SubjectKernels do not compile anymore


I detect a very distressing trend. Since the 2.3.13 release, which took
several days to fix so it would compile, I have not been able to download
a kernel that will compile. The 2.3.31 release of a development kernel
(December 6) had, not only problems with missing variables like
"memory_start", etc., but also had incomplete structures, missing
structure members, etc., all over the place. Most of the errors had to do
with initial ram-disk support which is required on many systems that use
modules. I spent about two weeks of my spare time trying to make 2.3.31
compile then gave up. If anyone is interested, I can provide a copy of
.config but that's not the problem. The problem is that Linus and others
used to make sure that kernels would compile. This is no longer being
done. Instead, we have 'secret' versions of kernels retained by
distributors while the publicly accessible kernels are junk.

Even kernels released with some distributions like Caldera do not compile
with the tools provided by Caldera.

The fixes to incorrect __asm__ code, which were contributed both by myself
and others, you know, the ones that print pages and pages of warnings,
were not included in 2.3.31 either.

So, if this trend continues, the result will be that Linux becomes a
proprietary operating system maintained secretly by a few special
interests (Distributors). Already, anything new, available on the
Internet, vi, is just junk even though
there are probably "special" versions of the kernel, perhaps at
RedHat, that will compile. This distressing trend means that RedHat
(substitute the name of any other distributor as well) now "owns" Linux
since only their secret versions work.

I have been contributing bug-fixes to Linux since June of 1995, the
first being a fix to make the AHA-1542 SCSI board work. I have not
complained that, over the years, every piece of code that had my
name on it, ended up with my name removed. At least the end result
was a reliable kernel and that's all I really wanted. I note that my
name is not even in the list of contributors anymore. Now the trend is

So, where is the real version of the kernel?

Dick Johnson

Penguin : Linux version 2.3.13 on an i686 machine (400.59 BogoMips).
Warning : The end of the world as we know it requires a new calendar.
Seconds : 1582582 (until Y2K)

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