Why are there so many kernels to choose?


1 Like

Whew, off the hook. :stuck_out_tongue:

Uh... anyone want to buy a car? Or 9?

1 Like

Its not alternative If user do not get breakages or recessions why run a bloated system with a multitude of Kernels and all the bloat that goes with it.

No .. this is just troll trash posting .. thats why I'm closing it... sheesh.


Now .. lets see how this goes.

For the record - trashing distros here, including Manjaro or Arch, is against the forums rules.

So is being overly rude to people .. so play nice.

I could see Manjaro changing its model for kernel, not to be strictly like Arch, but more an hybrid of both current Manjaro and Arch, which would be having the choice to select a specific kernel version like we are doing today, or the choice to stick with a "linux-default" chosen by Manjaro Team and evolving in major version seamlessly (à la Arch Linux). Although defining the rules for that linux-default kernel (i.e. what qualifies a Linux major version to be in linux-default: LTS only or not? Always the most recent LTS or not? After how many minor versions a major version can be considered mature enough to be part of linux-default? etc.) would be a separate debate.

Also, although I do understand the appeal of having many kernels available and being able to switch fo any one of them easily, I wonder if there is too many kernels to choose from, and if it is really useful to have that many kernels. Plus, old kernels are not necessarily working well with newer software, like current Qualcomm firmware for QCA9377 not working on Linux 4.14, Manjaro having to maintain qt5-base by themselves so it doesn't use a specific system call that didn't exists in kernel <=4.10, Linux 4.4 that had to be frozen for a while because modules would not compile on kernel >4.14.167, so having those old kernels may not be that useful if we can't have working software and drivers to use alongside it.

Men are just boys they just look older lol

For the record - having access to multiple kernels does not mean you have to have them installed.
Having access to multiple kernels does not equal bloat.


You are totally correct having access is not a problem we agree on that.
Any Linux distro has access to multiple kernels no distro is any different.
Having kernels installed you do not use is surely bloat

i usually keep the latest lts installed as backup but stick with the newer kernels as they are released if they dont introduce issues. 5.1 for example i had nvidia/wifi issues i've never had in any previous kernels so i stuck with 5.0 until it was dropped and moved to 5.2 and its fine.

only thing i see thats an issue is if someone who didnt pay attention to release announcements or pay attention in general and not notice that the kernel and it's modules have not been updating at all and then 2 months down the line wonder why when something goes wrong. but then again people that dont want to pay attention should just stick to the lts kernels in the first place

For me it's simple: Choice.
I can have 4.19 lts as a back up for when I do something stupid but run 5.1 or really push my luck (or lack thereof) and run with 5.2.
If someone wants to load every kernel and turn their system into a black hole of nightmares, it's there choice.
Yes, this is likely the place they'll come for help but it's one of the reasons why there's forums (and to talk to all you pleasant people).
I'm not a fan of choice being taken away, be it a corporate thing, a "vision for the future" thing, or people just making issues out of a non-issue.
Isn't that what GNU / Linux is all about? Choice

All kernels available on Manjaro are the kernels LTS that have still support. If you go to the official webpage of Kernel you can see the EOL (End Off-Life) dates:

Longterm release kernels

Version 	Maintainer 	Released 	Projected EOL
4.19 	Greg Kroah-Hartman 	2018-10-22 	Dec, 2020
4.14 	Greg Kroah-Hartman 	2017-11-12 	Jan, 2020
4.9 	Greg Kroah-Hartman 	2016-12-11 	Jan, 2023
4.4 	Greg Kroah-Hartman 	2016-01-10 	Feb, 2022
3.16 	Ben Hutchings 	        2014-08-03 	Apr, 2020

You can install all these kernels with Manjaro Settings Manager, but Manjaro is not the only one who has all the kernels available, ArchLinux too. If you go to the Arch Wiki you can see how to install old LTS kernels from AUR, also Ubuntu, OpenSUSE, Debian...etc:

    Longterm 3.16 — Long-term support (LTS) Linux 3.16 kernel and modules.

    https://www.kernel.org/ || linux-lts316AUR

    Longterm 4.4 — Long-term support (LTS) Linux 4.4 kernel and modules.

    https://www.kernel.org/ || linux-lts44AUR

    Longterm 4.9 — Long-term support (LTS) Linux 4.9 kernel and modules.

    https://www.kernel.org/ || linux-lts49AUR

    Longterm 4.14 — Long-term support (LTS) Linux 4.14 kernel and modules.

    https://www.kernel.org/ || linux-lts414AUR

So the answer to your question: The default kernel on Manjaro is the latest LTS kernel available, in this case, Linux 4.19 LTS. If you don't have problems with this kernel, you can keep using it. Is it better the latest kernel available non-LTS 5.1? the answer it's depends on your hardware and the new functions implemented in that kernel. Normally new brand computers are better for new kernels, but not old computers. If you have an old computer doesn't matter if you have the latest kernels, because you will receive a lot of lines of the kernel that your computer doesn't need... For example, if your computer is from 2010, and that computer received all support in 2012-14, you can still use the kernel 3.16 LTS released in 2014 with support extended until 2020. You will receive all new security patch available in all new kernels and other new basic support.

In my case, I have a computer from 2007, another from 2009 and other from 2015. The 2007 computer now doesn't work by default with the latest kernels because it doesn't support them, unless if I fix the problem for myself, but that computer now has the kernel 4.4 LTS. And the 2015 computer, for example, I experienced a problem with the latest update on Manjaro with the kernel 4.19 LTS with PulseAudio, an easy solution was to install an older kernel, so I installed the kernel 4.14 LTS released in 2017 with support until 2020, and works pretty well, and if I try to install the kernel 5.0> I have more problems..., My computer received all support with the kernel 4.4 LTS, so If I want, I can install the kernel 4.4 LTS too, it's not a big deal, because the rest of the distribution will receive the latest version of each package. For example, the latest version of Firefox, OpenSSL or KDE Plasma. So not always having the last kernel is better.

Grettings :slight_smile:


Cool, that is a good answer. I have never expected that people are really using older kernels, since all my hardware was over the last decade supported by the latest kernel or at least the latest LTS. Thanks

In Arch you can have as many of whatever and whichever kernels you want. I have 3, but I'm a belt-and-suspenders kinda guy. You can even run the Manjaro kernels (I have) if you so desire. Friggen idiots come in here spouting nonsense about Archlinux makes me question if they've actually come any closer to it than Arch's mainpage.

I'm going back to my friggen nap....waken me up for this BS... :frowning:

EDIT: I apologize if this comes across a bit "rough" in anyones' eyes. This post is made to nobody in particular. I sometimes grow very weary of Arch- or NN Distro-bashing from sometimes new and sometimes older Manjaro users.

I can certainly understand the exuberance when someone finds a new 'Home' in their new favorite distribution, but that does not have to come at the expense of any other.

I read through this thread in its entirety and see a huge amount of false, misleading, or otherwise factually incorrect answers. Don't give me your opinions give em facts.


Officially speaking, you have four choice kernels, and three of them (linux, linux-hardened and linux-zen) are more or less the same kernel but with different patches and tweaks for each of them.

While on Manjaro, officially speaking, you have access to each major version of the kernel currently supported by upstream, plus some RT kernels.

Of course, if you take into account AUR or third-party repos, the amount of variants explodes, but I doubt using a kernel from AUR is a good idea unless you really know what you are doing (and for third-party sources, you have to trust completely the maintainer).

And if you take into account custom kernels people may do, well now there is an infinite amount of variants since anyone can tweak their kernel as they wish. But not everyone has the knowledge to do that, and maintain that in a long term perspective.

YOU can also download and install from kernel org . and build your own like Ryzens patched for Arch.
But then Arch user actualy know what they are doing. They talk the talk and walk the walk, not just talk about it Lol
Their is nothing wrong with AUR if you know what you are talking about and capable of building from source or are you trying to say Kernel.org is dodgy used by RH.

But that's the point, isn't it? Manjaro was meant to make things a little easier for a wider range of users, including those who aren't so familiar with Arch or who are not so DIY in their usage of their operating system.

It's well and good saying, "you can have more than 2 kernels in Arch of whichever type you want", but then there is a qualifier to that statement.

Manjaro's collection of LTS kernels are more easily accessible for installation by the non-techie, directly from the Manjaro repos.

Up to 2 weeks ago I was still using 4.14-LTS on my second Manjaro install, and 6 months ago I still had 4.9-LTS as my backup LTS kernel on both Manjaro installs.

On my ex-Apricity install, admittedly I just use the linux-lts and linux kernels, since they still work fine on my machine. But you won't see me complaining about the easier access to more kernels in the Manjaro repos.

Some users are not interested in walking whatever walk and talking about it at all. They just want to use their system with convenience and less DIY-ness.

1 Like

No my point is this any distro you can choose the Kernel to suit you, so you don't need more than a lts and another of choice, you don't need multiple kernels like one poster said they have 9 installed that is just bloat and can lead to instability.
I had already written that in a previous post. The original post was "why are there so many Kernels to choose?" Then went on to say this.

I just pointed out You can have other Kernels in Arch

That is the case with any distro the latest is always offered and the latest LTS.
But the Arch is bleeding edge so it offers the latest the latest stable mainline nearly vanilla, and latest LTS, kernel. It would be false to say a distro is bleeding edge using out dated kernels even if they are still supported. It is also false to promote beta untested kernels then claim you offer more stability than others as user are going to think that is the latest and greatest.

1 Like

It seems like we have covered all the possible discussion points on this one.

Forum kindly sponsored by Bytemark