Linux-latest still on 5.10 , why?

I have installed the linux-latest metapackages to get the latest stable kernel installed automatically.

Why does the linux-latest* metapackages still point to linux510 ?

$ uname -a                                                                                                        
Linux statPC 5.10.26-1-MANJARO #1 SMP PREEMPT Thu Mar 25 16:56:17 UTC 2021 x86_64 GNU/Linux

$ pacman -Qs '.*-latest'
local/linux-latest 5.10-1
    The latest kernel and modules (metapackage)
local/linux-latest-headers 5.10-1
    Header files and scripts for building modules for the latest kernel (metapackage)
local/linux-latest-vhba-module 5.10-1 (linux-latest-extramodules)
    Kernel module that emulates SCSI devices (metapackage)
local/linux-latest-virtualbox-host-modules 5.10-1 (linux-latest-extramodules)
    Host kernel modules for VirtualBox (metapackage)


$ pacman -Qi linux-latest
Name            : linux-latest
Version         : 5.10-1
Description     : The latest kernel and modules (metapackage)
Architecture    : any
URL             : https://www.manjaro.org/
Licenses        : GPL
Groups          : None
Provides        : None
Depends On      : linux510
Optional Deps   : None
Required By     : None
Optional For    : None
Conflicts With  : linux318  linux420  linux50  linux51  linux52  linux53  linux55  linux56  linux57  linux58
Replaces        : linux318  linux420  linux50  linux51  linux52  linux53  linux55  linux56  linux57  linux58
Installed Size  : 0,00 B
Packager        : Philip Mueller <philm@manjaro.org>
Build Date      : 2020-12-31T19:24:00 CET
Install Date    : 2021-01-02T19:55:29 CET
Install Reason  : Explicitly installed
Install Script  : No
Validated By    : Signature

$ pacman -Qi linux-latest-headers
Name            : linux-latest-headers
Version         : 5.10-1
Description     : Header files and scripts for building modules for the latest kernel (metapackage)
Architecture    : any
URL             : https://www.manjaro.org/
Licenses        : GPL
Groups          : None
Provides        : None
Depends On      : linux510-headers
Optional Deps   : None
Required By     : None
Optional For    : None
Conflicts With  : linux318-headers  linux420-headers  linux50-headers  linux51-headers  linux52-headers
                  linux53-headers  linux55-headers  linux56-headers  linux57-headers  linux58-headers
Replaces        : linux318-headers  linux420-headers  linux50-headers  linux51-headers  linux52-headers
                  linux53-headers  linux55-headers  linux56-headers  linux57-headers  linux58-headers
Installed Size  : 0,00 B
Packager        : Philip Mueller <philm@manjaro.org>
Build Date      : 2020-12-31T19:24:00 CET
Install Date    : 2021-01-02T19:55:30 CET
Install Reason  : Explicitly installed
Install Script  : No
Validated By    : Signature

$ pacman -Qi linux-latest-vhba-module
Name            : linux-latest-vhba-module
Version         : 5.10-1
Description     : Kernel module that emulates SCSI devices (metapackage)
Architecture    : any
URL             : https://www.manjaro.org/
Licenses        : GPL
Groups          : linux-latest-extramodules
Provides        : None
Depends On      : linux510-vhba-module
Optional Deps   : None
Required By     : None
Optional For    : None
Conflicts With  : linux318-vhba-module  linux420-vhba-module  linux50-vhba-module  linux51-vhba-module
                  linux52-vhba-module  linux53-vhba-module  linux55-vhba-module  linux56-vhba-module
                  linux57-vhba-module  linux58-vhba-module
Replaces        : linux318-vhba-module  linux420-vhba-module  linux50-vhba-module  linux51-vhba-module
                  linux52-vhba-module  linux53-vhba-module  linux55-vhba-module  linux56-vhba-module
                  linux57-vhba-module  linux58-vhba-module
Installed Size  : 0,00 B
Packager        : Philip Mueller <philm@manjaro.org>
Build Date      : 2020-12-31T19:24:00 CET
Install Date    : 2021-01-02T19:55:34 CET
Install Reason  : Explicitly installed
Install Script  : No
Validated By    : Signature

$ pacman -Qi  linux-latest-virtualbox-host-modules
Name            : linux-latest-virtualbox-host-modules
Version         : 5.10-1
Description     : Host kernel modules for VirtualBox (metapackage)
Architecture    : any
URL             : https://www.manjaro.org/
Licenses        : GPL
Groups          : linux-latest-extramodules
Provides        : None
Depends On      : linux510-virtualbox-host-modules
Optional Deps   : None
Required By     : None
Optional For    : None
Conflicts With  : linux318-virtualbox-host-modules  linux420-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux50-virtualbox-host-modules  linux51-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux52-virtualbox-host-modules  linux53-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux55-virtualbox-host-modules  linux56-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux57-virtualbox-host-modules  linux58-virtualbox-host-modules
Replaces        : linux318-virtualbox-host-modules  linux420-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux50-virtualbox-host-modules  linux51-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux52-virtualbox-host-modules  linux53-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux55-virtualbox-host-modules  linux56-virtualbox-host-modules
                  linux57-virtualbox-host-modules  linux58-virtualbox-host-modules
Installed Size  : 0,00 B
Packager        : Philip Mueller <philm@manjaro.org>
Build Date      : 2020-12-31T19:24:00 CET
Install Date    : 2021-01-02T19:55:38 CET
Install Reason  : Explicitly installed
Install Script  : No
Validated By    : Signature

linux-latest was dropped and removed from repositories. You should remove it.

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Why? How am I supposed to always get the latest version without manually switching from 510 to 511?
Arch has simply linux without version numbers in the package name, linux-latest was the nearest thing to it in Manjaro.

Same for linux-latest-nvidia to keep Nvidia drivers always up to date, dropped shortly after (without notice?). Manjaro maintainers have even downgraded linuxXX-nvidia from v465 to v460, without a proper replacement for v465

Because it, and all it’s extra modules, was not kept up to date.

You don’t. Switching kernel series should be a user action on Manjaro. If you want rolling kernels, Manjaro is not for you. Try either Arch Linux or other Arch based distros for that.

3 Likes

Can you explain (or link an explanation) please? I’d like to know the motivations behind this.

Manjaro supports having multiple kernels installed.
Arch does not. So on Arch, you pick a kernel package, and that kernel package keeps rolling.

On Manjaro, the kernel packages are split into kernel series versions.
So linux54, linux510, linux511 and linux512 are each a kernel series and you can have them all installed on your Manjaro install and switch between them in Grub at boot time.

The Manjaro Team decided, a long time ago I guess, that switching kernel series should be a user action, so the user knows exactly what kernel series they are running. Decision was probably based on user feedback about old hardware and stuff.

The linux-latest meta package was introduced some time ago, to make sure people where not running on EOL (End of Life) kernels, but to make sure they where always on a kernel that was supported upstream. A linux-lts meta package was also created to have the same, just with only LTS based kernels.

But, these meta packages was not being kept up to date, so people just got stuck on EOL kernels again.
Keeping a meta kernel package up to date in Manjaro, also requires to keep the extra-modules packages up to date for it.
I believe it was just not something the team had time for anymore, so they dropped these meta kernel packages.

3 Likes

Thanks for the explanation, just a couple more questions

Never been on Arch, so I’m not sure what you mean with “kernel package” if the version is incremented by the maintainers.

I don’t really understand what “linux-latest” was except for a pointer to linux510 (when it was discontinued) and, if it is just that, why it would be difficult to maintain.

I think it was also creating more confusion and problems than anything else.
It’s not that easy, especially with those nvidia modules and stuff.

Imho that was the correct decision. Leave it up to the users to decide what kernel fit’s best for them.

You see quite some posts from people who switch back to earlier kernel series because of some quirks introduced with newer ones… (at least for some time until things are fixed)

I have manjaro notifier installed ( msm_notifier --settings) , its in the repos. It notifies me when a new kernel is available, I got a notification yesterday telling me kernel 5.12 was available so it does still work

1 Like

Arch has a coupleof different ones in their repo (linux and linux-lts at least) and many more in the AUR.
Each of them will roll through different kernel series as time goes on.
So even if you stick to linux-lts in Arch, you just made the switch from kernel 5.4 to 5.10.

It was a meta package to point to the latest stable kernel, which was 5.10 when the package was declared unmaintained.
It’s difficult to maintain, because you need to fix and build all the extra kernel modules Manjaro provides with their kernels to yet another kernel package, called linux-latest instead of linux510, since all the modules are built against specific kernel versions.

No, not really. linux-latest was just a meta-package that had dependencies on linux510 (and the extramodules).

It’s as simple as just chaning the pkgbase variable

1 Like

Oh. I was pretty sure it used to have all the extra modules at some point. My bad. Sorry. :frowning:

to be honest, like a normal user of manjaro, coming from arch. I prefer to use Linux-latest, okey, let’s say I prefered to use Linux-latest than to pick manually the kernel I want.
So please, put it again xD…
I prefer the kernel rolling automatically than manually. I think there is no " confusion" on this, at least for me

I thought linux-latest pointed to the latest LTS. The latest LTS is 5.10 isn’t it? Didn’t know it was removed from the repo and discontinued :-p

And I prefer it the other way around. Instead of forcing me to use a specific version I want to decided myself when and if I want to switch to a newer kernel version. :man_shrugging:
It’s not that it costs you hours of work. Just a few clicks every ~2 months.

There was linux-latest pointing the latest available kernel (well, at least what manjaro considered to be the latest) and linux-lts pointing to the latest LTS kernel.

1 Like

Why would linux-latest prevent you from doing this ?
Manjaro allows users to decide the kernel versions they want, but why should it force them to choose manually ?

I still don’t understand why some (either less experienced or lazier) users shouldn’t be able to rely on a metapackage which deals with kernel versions for them.

The reason is probably the difficulty of maintenance, but I’d really like it if someone could explain these difficulties.

3 Likes

Well, it would at least install a new kernel and remove the current one for me. What if I want to keep the previous one for some time, or don’t want to switch at all for the moment to wait a little longer until the new one matured a bit more…

Although by looking at the git history, I think they added replaces/conflicts only at some later point, like a month after the “depends” was changed. So the previous kernel was still kept for some time.

Yeah, good point. I see a lot of people using outdated kernel versions.
Well, they get a notification from MSM, but that is apparently not sufficient to trigger the people to install a new kernel.

From a pure technical standpoint it don’t think it is really a big job.
Just increasing the version number when a new kernel is out and then update the “eol” listing when a kernel is removed from the repo.

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I’m not advocating for removing the traditional linux5nn packages, only maintaining linux-latest. You can simply uninstall linux-latest and manually install the linux5xx packages you desire.

2 Likes

Yeah, sure. I’m just wondering if having a linux-latest installed by default is the right thing.
Of course I can always opt-out by removing it to “regain control”.
But yeah maybe it is. Seeing the inxi's (and kernel versions) of some users here I more and more think it’s probably better to have them on linux-latest indeed.

Yes I’m kind of changing my ming here :wink:

2 Likes