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Linux 5.9: Not a game-changer, but a good, solid Linux kernel

Linux 5.9: Not a game-changer, but a good, solid Linux kernel

The latest Linux kernel release is certainly not a game-changer, but does offer some notable performance improvements that will make certain groups of users much happier.


Over the weekend, Linus Torvalds released the next Linux kernel: Linux 5.9. Torvalds said, "OK, so I'll be honest -- I had hoped for quite a bit fewer changes this last week, but at the same time there doesn't really seem to be anything particularly scary in here."

So, if you're feeling brave, and you know how to compile your own Linux kernel, you can download all 115.5 MBs of the compressed Linux kernel 5.9 archive from Most of you, though, can afford to wait for it to appear in Linux distributions. That means, if you use a mainstream Linux distribution such as Fedora or Ubuntu, you can expect to run in their first 2021 releases. 

You don't have to be in a rush. The biggest change, support for the FSGSBASE instruction in Intel Ivy Bridge and later and AMD processors, will improve performance. But it only shows up if you're really pushing your RAM with many different loads. If you beat up your Linux server a lot, you'll see the change. I doubt a desktop user will spot it. 

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