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Linux 3.0 all about 'steady plodding progress'

20-year-old Sneaky Weasel comes into view

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Linus Torvalds has put penguins out of their misery by revealing that the next version number for the Linux kernel will be ***drumroll*** - 3.0.

A week after Torvalds publicly deliberated what the next iteration of the Linux kernel should be, he said he bit "the bullet" and simply numbered the thing.

He pointed out that the renumbering of the distro was discussed at 2010's Kernel Summit.

"But let's face it – what's the point of being in charge if you can't pick the bike shed colour without holding a referendum on it? So I'm just going all alpha-male, and just renumbering it. You'll like it," he wrote in an email yesterday, in which he announced the first Release Candidate of the 3.0 code.

Importantly, Torvalds noted that "absolutely nothing" will change – besides driver tweaks, VFS cleanups, VM fixes and "ARM consolidation" – in the next version, which is due out in about six or seven weeks and has been dubbed Sneaky Weasel.

"[T]he point is that 3.0 is *just* about renumbering, we are very much *not* doing a KDE-4 or a Gnome-3 here. No breakage, no special scary new features, nothing at all like that. We've been doing time-based releases for many years now, this is in no way about features. If you want an excuse for the renumbering, you really should look at the time-based one ('20 years'*) instead," he said.

Torvalds very sensibly pointed out that the "traditional '.0' problems" that hamper so many software projects would not affect the Linux 3.0 kernel.

Stability trumps "magical new features" in this release, he said.

Underlining that desire, alongside the need to go on his ollibobs, Torvalds is urging coders to test only for really ugly bugs in this release, the RC for which can be grabbed here. ®

Allgrownupnote

*The use of the number "3" points at the third decade of Linux, with the kernel hitting its 20th birthday later this year.

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