How do I do a kernel upgrade nonstupidly?

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How do I do a kernel upgrade nonstupidly?

Postby rlindsey0 on Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:55 pm

I have the dreaded Intel 4965 (see signature for system specs) and am getting kernel panics every few days, sometimes daily. I tried installing the backports as suggested, but that didn't fix the problem. I also tried the compat-wireless approach, which I found by searching, but either I did it wrong or it did me wrong, because I ended up having to reinstall Mint.

I also from time to time get implausibly high CPU usage that can't be fixed short of a reboot, usually after having been on Firefox for a while, but I don't know if that's related.

Anyway, in hopes of eliminating this issue, I'd like to try getting a newer kernel, unless there's some reason not to. I assume that doing this doesn't wipe the old kernel, but just adds new boot options? Is this correct? I did a search and found some posts suggesting that if I add a new kernel, I'll also have to edit the boot menu to make sure the right initrd lines are there. So if I do all this, should I be relatively safe? I assume I can always still boot into the old kernel. Can you uninstall the newer kernel, or is it best just to remove the corresponding entries in the boot menu?

Having asked all this, I'm embarrassed to say I don't actually know how to do the kernel upgrade itself. Is it a level 4 or 5 in mintUpdate, and can I do it through this tool? Or is it better to do something like "sudo apt-get dist-upgrade" in Terminal?

All help gratefully received.

Thanks,
Richard
Olivia 15 Cinnamon 64, dual-boot Win 7 Pro 64 SP1, Clevo W150ER 15.6" laptop, i7 3630M, 16 GB RAM, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256 GB/HGST 1 TB 7200 RPM, Nvidia GT 650M 1 GB, USB 3.0 HGST 1 TB 7200 RPM, HP Photosmart C5280
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Re: How do I do a kernel upgrade nonstupidly?

Postby viking777 on Thu Feb 26, 2009 2:08 pm

Well, my kernel is 2.6.27.12 and it works perfectly, so I would suggest that if your kernel is before that then you could update without too much bother, but I would say two things. First I have been upgrading kernels on various distros for years and I have hardly ever, no make that, never, known it make a scrap of difference to any problem that I might have had before the update. Secondly, I have many, many times updated to find I made things worse (usually the graphics won't work). But having said that Mint is what I would regard as an ultra-conservative distro - and for very good reason, they aim to appeal to people who don't even know what a kernel is let alone how to update one.

Your other question was, will the new kernel overwrite the old one, the answer is certainly not. You will have both appearing in the grub boot menu so if the new one doesn't work the old one will still be available. If you can see a new kernel in Mintupdate, even if it is 'level5' then go for it, just don't go downloading new kernels and compiling them yourself from source that way will ensure trouble.

As to how you do it, well I don't use Mintupdate myself (only synaptic) but I would imagine it is just a question of finding a button that says 'Install' and pressing it.

Good luck but don't blame me if it goes wrong :lol:
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Re: How do I do a kernel upgrade nonstupidly?

Postby rlindsey0 on Sat Feb 28, 2009 2:42 pm

Thanks, Don't worry, you'll get no blame from me! :wink:
Olivia 15 Cinnamon 64, dual-boot Win 7 Pro 64 SP1, Clevo W150ER 15.6" laptop, i7 3630M, 16 GB RAM, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256 GB/HGST 1 TB 7200 RPM, Nvidia GT 650M 1 GB, USB 3.0 HGST 1 TB 7200 RPM, HP Photosmart C5280
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