How to determine what's changed in new kernel?

Michael Hannon jm_hannon at
Thu Jul 24 20:19:20 UTC 2008

Greetings.  We've got a bunch of Fedora systems at work, and we have a policy of rebooting them each time a new kernel is installed.  It seems that lately there has been a new kernel about once every week or two, and a lot of our "customers" are frustrated with the frequent reboots.

I thought we might be able to mitigate the problem by doing the reboot only if there were a really significant change in the kernel, but I'm having trouble figuring out what the changes are.

One on of the Fedora 9 systems, for instance, we have:

    latest installed kernel = vmlinuz-
    kernel currently in use = vmlinuz-

I ran the following command in the hope of figuring out what changes have been made lately:

    rpm -q --changelog kernel-

This gives a lot of output, as:

* Mon Jul 07 2008 Chuck Ebbert <cebbert at>
- Fix USB interrupt handling with shared interrupts.

* Fri Jul 04 2008 John W. Linville <linville at>
- Upstream wireless fixes from 2008-07-02
- Apply Stefan Becker's fix for bad hunk of wireless build fixups for 2.6.25
* Fri Oct 12 2007 Dave Jones <davej at>
- 2.6.23-git2

* Fri Oct 12 2007 Dave Jones <davej at>
- Start F9 branch.

Clearly, not all of these changes apply to the transition from to  This makes it hard to assess the significance of that transition.

Is there some place I can find a succinct summary and evaluation of the changes to the kernel?  I'd like something with large print and short words that simply indicates that the kernel change is or is not related to security, for instance, and should be or need not be applied immediately.

BTW, I've looked on the Fedora Project web page and haven't yet found what I want.


-- Mike


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