Linus Torvalds has officially announced
that version 3.7 of the Linux kernel has gone stable, and that means good news for developers who work with ARM-based CPUs: among its other changes, Linux 3.7 is the first Linux kernel to include generic support for multiple ARM CPU architectures, reducing the amount of effort required to get Linux-based operating systems running on phones, tablets, and ARM-licensed developer boards like the Raspberry Pi
At present, every time a developer wants to port a Linux system to an ARM system-on-a-chip, they have to build a new kernel to support that processor's particular architecture. Additionally, differences between ARM chips from different companies means that porting that same Linux-based OS to another ARM processor'for example, taking code running on a Samsung SoC and making it run on a Qualcomm SoC'requires another kernel. The work required to maintain these separate kernels for each ARM SoC is a major roadblock for the architecture compared to x86 chips traditionally used in desktops and laptops, and overcoming this issue will be a major step forward for Linux and its forks, including Android.
This work mirrors the effort that Microsoft also exerted for Windows RT
, which likewise supports many different ARM architectures with the same kernel.
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