A couple of months after bringing out the mobile-focused build, Finnish-American software engineer Linus Torvalds has now released Linux 4.7 as his newest Linux kernel. The new version enhances the security of Linux systems through a new module and supports some modern GPU models.
“After a slight delay due to my travels, I’m back, and 4.7 is out,” Torvalds writes in a note. “Despite it being two weeks since rc7, the final patch wasn’t all that big, and much of it is trivial one- and few-liners. There’s a couple
of network drivers that got a bit more loving.”
Linux kernel 4.7 has a LoadPin security module that helps the platform load all the necessary modules from the same file system. It is ported directly from Google’s Chrome OS and is aimed to limit the medium from which kernel modules and firmware load on a system.
Apart from the new security module, the latest Linux kernel has CONFIG_TRIM_UNUSED_KSYMS option to removed exported kernel symbols that are unused on the system. This targets to reduce the size of the generated kernel binary and improve the overall user experience. Also, the reduction of exported kernel symbols would be a helpful move from security aspects.
The new kernel is supporting the newly launched Radeon RX 480 GPUs through the AMDGPU driver. Furthermore, the video driver gets upgraded with some performance improvements.
Continuing the trend of supporting more and more mobile devices in addition to desktops and notebooks, Linux 4.7 supports some new ARM platforms. There is native support for devices like the Google Pixel C and Amazon Kindle Fire. Torvalds has additionally provided PMC driver for various Intel Core chipsets and support to generate virtual USB Device Controllers in USB/IP.
You can download Linux 4.7 on your system directly from the official kernel website.