The Linux 6.5 kernel is coming, with new interesting features

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The Linux 6.5 kernel is coming, with new interesting features

Last July, Linus Torvalds feared that the next update of the Linux kernel would be “one of those versions that can drag on for a long time”, because of the big holidays in July-August.

It turns out that his concerns were unfounded and the new version has arrived: “Nothing particularly strange or scary happened last week, so there is no excuse to delay the release of version 6.5,” Torvalds announced on August 27.

However, Torvalds encourages developers to “test this final version one last time”. Thus, before embarking on the creation of new versions of Linux 6.5, developers would be well advised to carefully check the new kernel before deploying it.

Improved performance and energy utilization across all cores

These developers include those who work on Linux distributions such as Arch, who are often interested in the latest versions, and those who are working on the upcoming Ubuntu 23.10 version, whose developers plan to use Linux version 6.5.

For developers who want to test drive, what does this new version of Linux bring us? The answer is simple: a lot of things.

The biggest news for servers – and Linux users in the cloud – is the P-State support for AMD’s Ryzen processors. This support should translate into an improvement in performance and energy use on all processor cores. The Intel Alder Lake processors have also benefited from an improvement in load balancing.

Linux now supports the ACPI interface

Fans of the RISC-V architecture will be delighted to see that Linux now supports the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI). The ACPI is used in Linux and other operating systems for energy management. It is essential for laptops and other battery-powered systems.

For better security, people who use virtual machines or sandboxes based on Usermode Linux for testing purposes, or who are running several versions of Linux at once, now have support for Landlock. Landock is a Linux security module that allows applications to put themselves in sandbox mode by selecting directory access rights.

To facilitate exchanges, Linux 6.5 now supports USB 4v2. This new USB-C standard will support up to 120 Gbps. While we are still getting used to Wi-Fi 6E, the Wi-Fi Alliance is already working on the introduction of Wi-Fi 7. When Wi-Fi 7 arrives, with its theoretical maximum speed of 46 Gbps, Linux will be ready.

Bcachefs is not present

As usual, the new Linux kernel has many more integrated audio card and graphics card drivers.

There is, however, one feature that was not integrated into Linux 6.5. This is the Bcachefs file system. This copy-on-write file system is intended to be more reliable and more robust than its competitors. It supports multiple devices, replication, erasure encoding, compression, encryption, snapshots and caching.

Although the Bcachefs file system looks good, there have been a lot of developers arguing about the development process. These disputes led Torvalds to decide not to incorporate Bcachefs in Linux 6.5. Let’s hope that all these problems will be solved and that Bcachefs will finally be integrated into Linux 6.6.

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