[geek] Linux kernel upgrades without rebooting - automatically

[geek] Linux kernel upgrades without rebooting - automatically

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Ksplice. Available in the Ubuntu Universe repository since Karmic (October 2009).

I've been fantasizing about this for years.

One of the things that has always been nice about Linux has been how much less often it needs to be rebooted for things like software installation and upgrades. But it has still needed to be rebooted for occasional security fixes for the operating system itself - the kernel.

Now it doesn't.

"An evaluation against Linux kernel security patches from May 2005 to May 2008 found that Ksplice was able to apply all of the 64 significant kernel vulnerabilities discovered in that interval."


They have a free service providing the patches for Ubuntu and Fedora kernels. And the software to apply those patches (ksplice-uptrack) can be configured to run automatically. I would love to see distributions start providing those patches themselves.

I just installed it (quite easy, via .deb, which adds a source to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/), and enabled automatic updates via "autoinstall = yes" in /etc/uptrack/uptrack.conf. And now I have an additional little icon thingy on my gnome panel.



Update: I also managed to install it on my Linode (virtual server) after switching from their custom kernel to the Ubuntu linux-virtual kernel package using pv-grub. And now I don't need to worry about Linode not doing security kernel upgrades often enough anymore.
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