The first release candidate is now available for testing

Jan 8, 2019 15:24 GMT  ·  By  ·  Comment  · 
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Linux kernel 5.0 RC1 released
   Linux kernel 5.0 RC1 released

After a long wait, we will finally be able to run the long-anticipated Linux 5.0 kernel on our Linux-powered computers as Linus Torvalds kicked off 2019 with the development cycle of Linux kernel 5.0.

While not a special release, like many of you out there would have expected from such major milestone, Linux kernel 5.0 is coming in a few months to the stable repositories of your favorite GNU/Linux distribution with updated and new drivers, architecture and tooling updates, as well as various improvements to networking, filesystems, documentation, and core kernel code.

"The numbering change is not indicative of anything special. If you want to have an official reason, it's that I ran out of fingers and toes to count on, so 4.21 became 5.0. There's no nice git object numerology this time (we're _about_ 6.5M objects in the git repo), and there isn't any major particular feature that made for the release numbering either," said Linus Torvalds.

The first release candidate is now ready for public testing if you want to be the first to run the upcoming Linux 5.0 kernel on your Linux box. While "nothing particular stands out," as Linus Torvalds reports on the kernel mailing list, it consists of about 50 percent updated and new drivers, with some ancient ones deprecated, 20 percent architecture updates, 10 percent tooling fixes, and the rest miscellaneous changes.

Linux kernel 5.0 lunches February-March 2019

With the first release candidate out the door, we can guess when the final Linux 5.0 kernel will be hitting the streets, which should happen sometime at the end of February or early March 2019. As usual, the launch of the final release depends on how many RC (Release Candidate) milestone are needed, so we're looking at February 24th if there's seven RCs or March 3rd if there are eight RCs.

Of course, after the final release, it would be a two-week window until Linux kernel 5.0 gets its first point release and it's marked as stable and ready for mass deployments, so mid-March 2019 is more likely when your Linux box will run Linux 5.0. Until then, you're invited to test drive the pre-release version by downloading Linux kernel 5.0 RC1 right now from kernel.org or via our web portal of free software. Happy testing!

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