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SubjectThe stability crisis
Linux 2.2.36 was a very stable kernel. I have never experianced a crash
with it. However, this does not at all hold true for the 2.2.x series.

During the initial stage of the 2.2 series, it was pretty darn stable. I
got about 60 days of uptime out of 2.2.1 until a power failure or a need
to mess with hardware or something. (Actually, now I think it was a hard
lockup). Back then we knew that 2.2 was not at all as stable as 2.0.36,
but we knew it would mature.

WRONG!

Linus waited a few months to open the 2.3 branch. A lot of untested
patches were making it into the 2.2 series! People like me breathed a sigh
of relief when Linus opened up the 2.3 branch. Now we knew that all of the
patches would go into 2.3 and 2.2 would become mature and stable like
2.0.36

But that was only half right. Linus decided to hasten the release of 2.4
to "in the fall", and all of the developers jumped onto the 2.3 kernel,
leaving us with a stable kernel which is totally inadequate.

2.2.10 is by far less stable than any operating system I have used
excuding MacOS. During the past _week_ I have had three oopsen using
kernel 2.2.9 and 2.2.10. I have never had an oops before this week with
the exception of Linux on platforms where the ports are excusabe immature
and on unstable hardware. Once I found a small bug with a friend in 2.0.x
that caused an oops but it wasn't anything major. It was fixed
immediately.

All the attention has shifted to 2.3. Most people as well as benchmarkers
are using 2.2.10. Helloo??? This is a perfect time for Microsoft to spread
FUD since the "stable" branch of Linux is far less stable than even
Windows NT. THIS IS NOT GOOD FOR LINUX OR THE PEOPLE WHO USE IT! Something
needs to be done about this fast. I reccomend that 2.2.10 be made rock
solid. Most features and new device drivers can wait until fall with 2.4.
Of course, 2.4 should be made and kept very stable as a 2.5 or 2.9 is
opened up immediately.

I hate to bitch about stuff like this but if I were to try to write kernel
code I would probably just add more fatal bugs :).

Maybe Alan Cox should voulenteer to maintain 2.2 :). He did a great job
with 2.0.

And all kernel hackers out there, PLEASE help make 2.2 more stable.

Speed is a problem that has been dealt with a lot lately, due to the
numerous benchmarks. I believe that this is also a priority, but
secondary to stability, at least at this level of instability.


Thanks.


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