Linux Kernel Hits 2.6.24

The first new Linux kernel of 2008 is now out, showcasing improvements that run the gambit of bug fixes to new performance and feature enhancements.

One addition found in the new 2.6.24 Linux kernel is the new ability for write-throttling code.

“This prevents one heavily-used block device from starving the other devices. so it’s great for throughput enhancement,” Joel Berman, director of marketing at Red Hat, told

Berman also said the new kernel’s inclusion of what are known as kernel markers would prove very useful for developers. Kernel markers are used for deep tuning and debugging.

“This gets us closer to Dtrace, and makes SystemTap easier to use,” Berman said. Dtrace is the Sun Solaris technology that uses dynamic probes to monitor system performance. SystemTap is a similar approach for Linux.

The Linux 2.6.24 kernel also improves kernel utilization by way of new group scheduling technology. Berman explained that new approach fairly allocates groups’ CPU usage.

For example, if there are four active groups, each group gets 25 percent of the CPU. If one group is made up of 10 users, another group has 100 and the other two have one each, the 100 in one group share their 25 percent of the machine.

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