Linux kernel 4.5 RC7 (Release Candidate 7) is now available for download to early adopters, especially Linux kernel-based operating system vendors, as well as to those who want to test and report bugs, and according to Mr. Torvalds things have finally calmed down this past week.
Of course, this means only one thing: the final release of Linux kernel 4.5 is just around the corner, and it might arrive next week, March 13, 2016, if everything goes according to plan and no sudden changes occur. Therefore, the 7th Release Candidate build is also the last in the series.
“So things have finally calmed down this past week, and I think we’ll end up with a normal release where rc7 is the last RC,” said Linus Torvalds in today’s announcement. “Of course, I reserve the right to change my mind in case we find something worrisome, but on the whole it looks good.”
What’s new in Linux 4.5-rc7
The seventh Release Candidate build of Linux kernel 4.5 consists of approximately three quarters of updated drivers, in particular for things like USB, Watchdog, GPU, RDMA, ATA, and sound, not to mention that a usb-serial redundant driver has been removed, and the rest is split between architecture fixes (mostly for ARM, x86, MIPS, and SPARC) and filesystem improvements (mostly Btrfs, CIFS, Ceph, and JFFS2).
As expected, you can grab the Linux kernel 4.5 Release Candidate 7 sources right now from the kernel.org website or via Softpedia and start testing it, and, of course, report bugs if you encounter them. However, please try not to replace your stable kernel package with this pre-release version. Wait for the final release of Linux kernel 4.5 next week.