Linux 5.1-rc1 Kernel Released After A “Fairly Normal” Merge Window


Linus Torvalds has just closed off the Linux 5.1 kernel merge window and issued 5.1-rc1 as the first test release.

Linux 5.1 was another busy merge window with the landing of a lot of patches from continued Intel Icelake enablement to Fastboot graphics by default to mainline Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+ support to a lot of other new hardware support… See today’s Linux 5.1 feature overview for our original report on all the interesting material in this next version of the Linux kernel.

If all goes well with the release candidates over the weeks ahead, Linux 5.1 should be officially released by the middle of May at which point the cycle repeats with the kicking off of the Linux 5.2 merge window.

Of the past two weeks in landing new code for Linux 5.1, Torvalds commented, “The merge window felt fairly normal to me. And looking at the stats, nothing really odd stands out either. It’s a regular sized release (which obviously means “big” – , but it’s not bigger than usual) and the bulk of it (just over 60%) is drivers. All kinds of drivers, the one that stands out for being different is the habanalabs AI accelerator chip driver, but I suspect we’ll be starting to see more of that kind of stuff. But there are all the usual suspects too – gpu, networking, block devices etc etc.

Stay tuned for the start of Linux 5.1 kernel benchmarks to trickle in beginning in the next week or so.