February 17, 2020

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” Will Ship with Linux Kernel 5.4 LTS

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

Canonical announced that the upcoming Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” operating system will ship with the Linux 5.4 kernel series.

Development on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS kicked off last year in October, based on the kernel and graphics stack from Ubuntu 19.10 “Eoan Ermine.” However, a few months later the Ubuntu Kernel Team has bumped the kernel version to Linux 5.4.

It’s the right thing for an Ubuntu LTS release to ship with a Linux LTS kernel

With the Linux 5.5 kernel series out the door in January, many believed that Ubuntu 20.04 LTS will get another kernel bump before the final release hits the streets in April 2020.

But it won’t happen, because Linux kernel 5.4 is a Long Term Support (LTS) version, which will get maintenance updates until December 2021.

What will probably happen is Canonical’s Ubuntu Kernel Team backporting features and fixes from Linux 5.5 kernel point release to the Linux kernel 5.4 included in Focal Fossa for all supported architectures.

“We are building the Focal / 20.04 LTS kernel based on the upstream 5.4 kernel. We have a version of this Ubuntu kernel in the -release pocket and continut to iterate and update it regularly while working towards the 20.04 release date,” said Brad Figg, Director of Kernel Engineering at Canonical.

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS to be supported until 2030

Canonical will support the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” release for up to 10 years, until 2030. During this time, they will publish regular point releases every six months, some of which will refresh the kernel stack based on those from interim releases, such as Ubuntu 20.10.

The Focal Fossa release will be ready for public testing in early April 2020. According to the official release schedule, beta version should be available on April 2nd for all participating flavors.

Until then, those who want to track the development cycle of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS can download and install the daily build images.

Source: Ubuntu kernel mailing list

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