As Linux 5.12 released, Linus Torvalds warns next version will probably be rather large

New version adds: Hyper-V fun, more support for ACRN IoT hypervisor, PlayStation controller support, ‘novelty port’ to ancient Nintendo

Linus Torvalds has emitted version 5.12 of the Linux kernel, and warned the next version looks like a whopper.

"Thanks to everybody who made last week very calm indeed, which just makes me feel much happier about the final 5.12 release," he said in his announcement, while referencing last week's post in which he worried the release may slip a week.

The new kernel offers delights including:

  • Linux as a root partition on Hyper-V;
  • more support for ACRN, a lightweight hypervisor intended for use in internet-of-things devices;
  • mainlining of SiFive's HiFive Unmatched board and the 64-bit RISC-V-compatible FU740 SoC at its heart, a combo SiFive has aimed at creating RISC-V PCs;
  • Broadcom's VK accelerators are now recognized, enabling offload of workloads like video transcoding to dedicated devices rather than leaving all the heavy lifting to CPU cores; and
  • support for PlayStation 5 DualSense controllers and Nintendo's N64 console, the latter has been dubbed a novelty port by kernel-watching site Phoronix, on grounds the N64 runs at 93.75Mhz and has 4-8MB of RAM.
Project ACRN logo

Linux Foundation backs new ‘ACRN' hypervisor for embedded and IoT


Torvalds wrapped up his announcement by asking kernel devs to "please spend a bit of time running and checking out 5.12" before they start sending in merge requests for version 5.13.

"'Despite the extra week, this was actually a fairly small release overall," he wrote. "Judging by Linux-next, 5.13 will be making up for it."

Among the known additions coming to version 5.13 are support for Apple's M1 silicon, the addition of a wireless WAN subsystem, more RISC-V support, and provisions for Intel's standalone GPUs. ®

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