Linux 2.4 kernel released

Torvalds tells developers to have fun

The long-awaited Linus 2.4 kernel has been released by Linus Torvalds.

Considered to be a major milestone in the development of open source software, the latest version of the Linux kernel features enhanced support for symmetrical multiprocessing. This means Linux will work effectively with, say, 16 or 32 processors instead of only four making it far more suitable for enterprise applications. Support for Intel's forthcoming 64-bit Itanium processor and improvements in USB support are among the other key features.

A much fuller list of features, debugs and improvements has been posted on Linux Today and available here

In a short message to the kernel mailing list, Torvalds said: "Anxiously awaited for the last too many months, 2.4.0 brings to the table many improvements, none of which come to mind to the exhausted release manager right now."

In a jokey aside to developers he added: "Anyway, have fun. And don't bother reporting any bugs for the next few days. I won't care anyway."

The kernel has been released more than a year later than first expected. The main reason for this was the inclusion of high-end enterprise features and the desire to adhere to the open source philosophy of only releasing code when it was ready.

Users may have difficulty getting through to kernel.org and there are a number of other sites where the kernel might be obtained. Those with the highest bandwidth connections include jhcloos.com, www.in-span.net, www.gnaps.com, www.stealth.net, limestone.uoregon.net, kernel.csh.rit.edu, kernel.stuph.org and sourceforge.net. You might also try ftp.gz.uk.kernel.org or ftp.us.kernel.org ®

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