kernel upgrade

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eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Being a digital moron, i would like to upgrade the kernel version without much ado while causing no trouble or risks down the road.
I need version 4.19 ( or newer ) for my vpn.
In a closed thread a link is given to : https://jxself.org/linux-libre/
My pc runs on AMD64, so it should be compatible with PAE, whatever that is.
Would it suffice to command : sudo apt install linux-libre-4.19 (-5.4 ) ?
Is there any mentionable difference between 4.19 and 5.4 ?
Thanks beforehand for any response.
By the way, Trisquel works great.
E.g. it is easy to add or remove programs.
I struggled with getting rid of voice-assistence on Flidas, but upgrading from there to Etiona went smooth.
GNU/Linux systems are in general not known for user-friendliness and seemingly not aimed at folks that are simple-minded or simply not that familiar with terminals, not to speak of software-related terminology.
I can insert prescribed commands in the terminal but not with that much confidence about the consequences.

larshenrikoern
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Joined: 11/25/2020

Hi

Install linux-image-generic-hwe and be happy. It is currently based on linux 5.3 and works well

Have a nice day
Lars H

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

Listing instructions to be executed in a terminal is the easiest and usually most efficient way to help somebody. The same can often be achieved through a graphical user interface, in that case through the "Synaptic Package Manager". However, it is a chore to give clear instructions to do something through a graphical user interface, which is moreover localized (who helps and who needs help may have their system speaking different languages) and often change from one version to the next one (the instructions must therefore be updated).

You certainly do not want to install linux-libre-4.19 or linux-libre-5.4: without any new action on your part, you would stick with the same version of Linux after it ceases to receive updates, in particular security updates. You probably want to install the package linux-libre-lts. In this way, you will be always "using the current long-term support (LTS) version of Linux-libre", as https://jxself.org/linux-libre/ explains. Currently, that is version 5.4.

Here is the sequence of commands, to be executed in a terminal, with [Enter] after you copy a line, without the leading "$":
$ echo 'deb mirror://linux-libre.fsfla.org/pub/linux-libre/freesh/mirrors.txt freesh main' | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list
$ wget -O - https://jxself.org/gpg.asc | sudo apt-key add -
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install linux-libre-lts

The easiest way to copy a line into the terminal is to highlight it (on this page) and to do a middle click in a terminal emulator (that you should be able to launch with Ctrl+Alt+T). You password will be asked: type it (it is normal that nothing appears while you are typing) and press [Enter]. You can then reboot your system and will be running version 5.10 of Linux. To verify it from a terminal:
$ uname -r

EDIT: As larshenrikoern pointed out while I was typing my reply, you can alternatively simply install linux-image-generic-hwe, in Trisquel's repository, to get version 5.3 of Linux (with security updates until Trisquel 9's end of life):
$ sudo apt install linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Thanks a lot, this sounds like essential and useful help, preventing me from foolish attempts.
I guess the Trisquel team takes care of the security updates of kernel 5.3 if the following is true :
https://www.linux.com/news/linux-kernel-5-3-reached-end-of-life-users-urged-to-upgrade-to-linux-kernel-5-4/

Four simple copy+paste commands in the terminal should not be really more difficult than one.
There is no technical jargon involved here, or unspecified ways to extract downloaded files, as i have encountered before.

Are both 5.3 and 5.4 completely compatible with Etonia ?
It might be and probably is a dumb thought, but i wonder why one would make use of an old kernel in the first place.

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

The Ubuntu project backports security fixes to Linux 5.3. The Trisquel project deblobs (i.e., remove proprietary code from) those kernels, whenever released.

The main reason to install a different version of the kernel is badly supported (or even unsupported) hardware. Usually recent hardware. If the installed kernel properly supports your hardware, that is not a good reason to upgrade. Upgrading may bring new low-level features too, that higher-level programs can use. However, if you stick to programs in Trisquel's repository, you will not use them. It may bring performance improvements too. However upgrading a well-functioning kernel also means potentially facing new bugs you did not have.

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Sorry for this : just very recently the requirements for my vpn have unexpectedly changed from 4.19 to 4.8.0.
This means the whole kernel issue is no more relevant.

Thanks anyway for responding, i learned a few things along the way, and perhaps a few others do as well when looking for answers in the forum.

In addition to the vpn ( https://github.com/mullvad/ ) i want to use one other program that is not in Trisquel's repository.
No upgrade but still some software downloads nevertheless.
Hopefully these will not lead to bugs, leaks or other undesirable results.

Not that important but as a side note : in order to post a message, one has to click on "Save", as if it is a draft.
Perhaps the term could be a bit confusing for some people.

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Well, the requirements did not change but are confusing.
sudo apt install linux-image-generic-hwe
does not seem to work on my pc : the package can not be found
So i guess i'll install linux-libre-lts
and enter the 4 commands into the terminal and get 5.4 with security updates as well.

Another question :
after reading this interesting thread ( although with a limited understanding ) :
https://trisquel.info/en/forum/web-browsers-0
i considered to install Palemoon along Abrowser, with the idea in mind that there is no traffic between browsers and dividing personal ( like email ) and non-personal activities over diverse browsers would improve security.
Is this correct or way too simple-minded ?

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

The package is actually named "linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04". Sorry for the mistake.

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

This time not the "package" but the "command" could not be found !
So i tried out your alternative set of 4 commands ( + 1 time "yes" ), which installed kernel version 5.10.5 GNU ( not 5.4 ).
Is this potentially as risky as 5.3 or 5.4 or worse ?
Perhaps, as it is something dumb i could easily do, did i enter :
"linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04"
instead of "sudo apt install linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04"
Whatever, should i leave it at what it is now,
or : ( possibly for the second time ) command "sudo apt install linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04"
or re-install Trisquel 9 first ?
Sorry for the nuisance ;(.

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

This time not the "package" but the "command" could not be found !

You mistyped "sudo" or "apt". The command is:
$ sudo apt install linux-image-generic-hwe-18.04

So i tried out your alternative set of 4 commands ( + 1 time "yes" ), which installed kernel version 5.10.5 GNU ( not 5.4 ).

Version 5.10 is indeed LTS. Have you rebooted you system afterwards? Is your problem solved?

lucasjosef23
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Joined: 01/10/2021

Hello you do not have a server, that provides this ftp kernel if you have can put here please

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

The kernels we are referring to are either in Trisquel's repository or in Jason Self's APT Repository for Linux-libre.

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

It works but there are two things slightly troubling me.

You wrote " However upgrading a well-functioning kernel also means potentially facing new bugs you did not have."
Is 5.10 worse than 5.3 or does that not make a big difference ?

Today when installing updates, there were two among these that seemed contradictory.
The first one was Trisquel Base that started to update kernel 4.15 ( which i stopped ) while an update of 5.10 ( towards 5.10.6 ) was also on the list.
Should 4.15 be purged or can both kernels be allowed to run along each other without causing havoc ?

Magic Banana

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Joined: 07/24/2010

I was only pointing out that new versions may introduce new bugs: nothing specific to Linux. If Linux-libre 5.10 LTS works for you, keep it. You can purge "linux-generic" and "linux-image-generic" to not receive any more update of the 4.15 kernel. You can purge as well any package related to Linux 4.15 (you can search "4.15" in the Synaptic Package Manager and click on the "S" header to have the installed packages listed first). Nevertheless, there is no harm in having many kernels installed, except the disk space they take (about 50 MB per kernel, nowadays).

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Or remove 5.10 and try to upgrade to 5.3 again with the linux-image-generic-hwe ?

eagle
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Joined: 11/29/2020

Thanks for the clarification.
I am actually not sure that everything works fine.
E.g. deleting the buffer of Abrowser ( in about:preferences#privacy ) does seem to function but nothing is actually wiped.
I actually do not like the idea of there being any buffer in the first place.