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Re: Kernel 2.4.20 panic

The Debian no brainer is to use the provided kernel-image packages,
which work for 99% of the cases, and because they are modular initrd
kernels, all the extra stuff you don't need is not loaded. A custom
compiled kernel with only the "stuff you need" is not leaner or faster
any more. It only saves disk space in the /lib/modules directory, and
means you have to re-compile everything every time you realise you need
a new feature or module.

I see a lot of "you need to compile your own kernel" advise given to
newbies. This is like telling someone who is asking why their car
doesn't have a clutch peddle (ie, it's an auto), that they need to fit a
new gearbox, and while they are at it, put in a new carbie, a
turbo-charger, a bigger diff, and bore the engine out a little. Sure,
doing all that is fun, and you might be doing them a favor starting them
down the path of hotting up their car, but perhaps they just want to go
for a drive :-)

I agree, but I did it for two reasons.

1. I see Linux as an opportunity to learn. Someone advised me to compile the kernel if I had never done it before, so I did. I've tinkered around with it a bit and I like the learning experience.

2. My destop has limited space and resources, and its primary function is as a fileserver/router/firewall. This prompted me to see what improvements I could make by recompiling the kernel and cutting out the stuff I don't need.

Overall, I think it was rather painless. It was very productive on my desktop (the new kernel and modules take something like .25 to .33 times the space of the stock 2.4.18 kernel that came with Woody. But, I probably won't be as enthused to compile my next kernel (whenever the 2.6's start coming out).

Just my thoughts.


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