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GNU Linux-libre 6.8-gnu

From: Freedo
Subject: GNU Linux-libre 6.8-gnu
Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2024 22:57:32 -0300
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/27.1 (gnu/linux)

Hello, everyone,

This is Freedo, the spokespenguin for the GNU Linux-libre project.

Last month, I had a wonderful Summer vacation trip, to celebrate the
16th anniversary of GNU Linux-libre.

And today, I'm ready to announce GNU Linux-libre release 6.8-gnu.

tags {scripts,sources,logs}/v6.8-gnu

Scripts to clean up for the 6.8-gnu series were first published for rc7,
and they haven't changed since then.


-- compressed tarballs

-- incremental patches

Binaries are on the way.

- Freesh (.deb) binaries

- RPMFreedom (.rpm) binaries

# Artwork

Summer is about to end here in the Southern hemisphere, and we penguins
love it.

Last month, I turned 16, and celebrated it with a wonderful trip to the

Tutor Jason drew a picture of me having a great time.

Check it out at

# Cleaning up changes

- Upstream removed atmel, hermes, orinoco_usb, libertas_cs, and zd1201
drivers, so we no longer need to clean them up.

- New drivers for Intel qat\_420xx, Imagination PowerVR, Intel Xe,
Chips&Media Wave5, Intel VSC, Aquantia PHY, and Realtek rtw8922a needed
cleaning up.

- The coda driver moved in the upstream "source" tree, so its cleaning
up was adjusted.

- Some new blob names appeared in new new ARM and AArch64 devicetree
files, so we cleaned them up.

- Upstream changed the .deb packaging scripts, so we adjusted for the
changes and took the opportunity to improve the wording.

# Attempted bug fix

Intel i915, that used to be a very freedom-friendly driver, has become a
constant source of problems due to blobs.

Last year, we learned about infinite loops on certain i915 hardware
variants, as they attempted to fall back to earlier blob variants that
we had cleaned up to indistinguishable names.

We fixed that, and even contributed the patch upstream.  It wasn't
taken, but other changes were made in response to our patch, that made
the driver much noisier in our case.

We've addressed the extra noise, but those upstream changes were not
what broke the driver again for us.  We still don't know what did, but
the symptom is similar to the earlier breakage: some systems with Intel
graphics appear to freeze.

Booting with i915.enable_guc=0 will avoid the apparent freeze on systems
affected by this problem.

We're investigating the problem at

If you'd like to help us figure it out, please join the conversation
there, in our mailing list, or on IRC.

The newer problem seems to go as far back as 6.5-gnu, maybe even

If you notice this sort of regression, in which hardware works with one
earlier (freedom-respecting) kernel but not with later versions, don't
hesitate to let us know.  Odds are we may be able to make it work like
it did before, if only we're made aware of it, and get some help from
people who have access to the hardware.

For fresh news about GNU Linux-libre, follow me in the Fediverse.

My tutors are also on IRC: #gnu-linux-libre on

That was all, everyone.  Be Free! with GNU Linux-libre.

*waves wings*

# Rolling credits

What is GNU Linux-libre?

  GNU Linux-libre is a Free version of the kernel Linux (see below),
  suitable for use with the GNU Operating System in 100% Free
  GNU/Linux-libre System Distributions.

  It removes non-Free components from Linux, that are disguised as
  source code or distributed in separate files.  It also disables
  run-time requests for non-Free components, shipped separately or as
  part of Linux, and documentation pointing to them, so as to avoid
  (Free-)baiting users into the trap of non-Free Software.

  Linux-libre started within the gNewSense GNU/Linux distribution.
  It was later adopted by Jeff Moe, who coined its name, and in 2008
  it became a project maintained by FSF Latin America.  In 2012, it
  became part of the GNU Project.

  The GNU Linux-libre project takes a minimal-changes approach to
  cleaning up Linux, making no effort to substitute components that
  need to be removed with functionally equivalent Free ones.
  Nevertheless, we encourage and support efforts towards doing so.

  Our mascot is Freedo, a light-blue penguin that has just come out
  of the shower.  Although we like penguins, GNU is a much greater
  contribution to the entire system, so its mascot deserves more
  promotion.  See our web page for their images.

  If you are the author of an awesome program and want to join us in
  writing Free (libre) Software, please consider making it an official
  GNU program and become a GNU Maintainer.  You can find instructions
  on how to do so at  We look
  forward to hacking with you! :)

What is Linux?

  Linux is a clone of the Unix kernel [...]

(snipped from Documentation/admin-guide/README.rst)

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