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SubjectRe: Linux + 2.4 EOL plans
On Tue, Sep 14, 2010 at 03:19:54PM -0700, Yuhong Bao wrote:
> OK, I will bite.
> Why are you still using kernel 2.4?

One word : stability.

Many people don't need all the fancy new features of 2.6 and can't afford
to reboot their systems every two weeks to apply the last bunch of fixes.
It's quite common to encounter 2.4 systems with 2 years of uptime in
production. Some users even ship it in embedded products where it's
impossible to update the system after it's shipped (no internet connectivity).
With 2.4, they're assured they won't encounter stability problems.

Some other users still use it for security reasons. 2.6 offers a wider
attack vector range and in practice, new locally exploitable vulnerabilities
are discovered every few weeks-months. I'm not saying that there aren't on
2.4, but since the code is frozen, it's been long since we last got one and
there's no reason to introduce new ones.

In fact, 2.4 is now occupying a similar place as OpenBSD : the type of
system you install once and never touch anymore.


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