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To what extent should Debian modify the kernel? (Re: Debian should not modify the kernels!)

On Sun, Sep 21, 2003 at 09:41:41PM +1000, Herbert Xu wrote:

> I've got a few points for you:
> * The vanilla kernel source is readily available:
> apt-get install kernel-source-2.4.22 kernel-patch-debian-2.4.22
> tar xjf /usr/src/kernel-source-2.4.22.tar.bz2
> cd kernel-source-2.4.22
> /usr/src/kernel-patches/all/2.4.22/unpatch/debian
> * The IPSEC backport can be easily reversed by unapplying
> the patches given in the README.Debian file.
> * The IPSEC backport has minimal effect on the binary images.  It
> has no effect unless you load the relevant modules.  The increase
> in size is tiny compared to the increases brought on by ACPI and
> compiler changes.  

Let me say first that I very much appreciate having IPsec available in
2.4.x.  This feature is important to me, as is the relative stability of
2.4.x kernels.  However, it does require that I either maintain
modifications to the UML patch so that it applies cleanly (which is what I
currently do), or revert the entire Debian kernel patch (which otherwise
causes no problems for my patch packages).

So, I'm curious why you chose to make it a part of the Debian kernel source,
rather than a separate patch (kernel-patch-ipsec or such).

I suppose the more fundamental question is, what is your vision for the
Debian kernel source?  What do you feel belongs there, and what does not?

 - mdz

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