Linux kernel Long Term Support (LTS) releases are “longterm maintenance” releases that currently come with 2 years of support for the purpose backporting bug and security fixes. The usual Linux kernel releases arrive after about every 7-8 weeks.
This free and open source kernel serves as the base for most of the devices, including millions of Android and other ARM devices. Now, in a major change that involves how the kernel support is provided, the two-year lifecycle of Linux LTS kernel is being bumped to six years.
This announcement was made by Googler Iliyan Malchev during a Linaro Connect 2017 presentation.
While discussing the changes being brought to Android update cycle with Project Treble, he said: “Greg Kroah-Hartman has given me permission to announce this here: He will extend LTS to six years, starting with kernel 4.4.”
After this change, Android devices are going to be the ones which will get most benefits. The current Linux kernel lifecycle doesn’t align with Google’s support window, and the Android smartphones are deprived of regular security updates.
Submitted by: Arnfried Walbrecht