Linus Torvalds released yesterday Linux 5.16-rc7, and began his weekly note saying that it does not surprise anyone that he is small. It was already rc5 and in rc6 things did not change much, and the reason is the dates in which we are. On top of that, Christmas and New Year’s Eve fall on a Saturday, so both developers and testers aren’t doing all the work they would on other dates.
What catches the attention of the note Linux 5.16-rc7 is that Torvalds mentions that «we will stay that way for at least two more weeks«. It was already known that the slow pace that was carried these days would make an eighth Release Candidate necessary, but that “at least” makes us think that It has not yet decided if there will be rc9.
Linux 5.16 will arrive on January 9 … or 16
Obviously, holidays are a big reason for everything to be small, so it’s not a sign that we’ve found all the bugs, and we’ll be sticking with this for at least two more weeks. I hope everyone had a good Christmas (or insert your favorite alternative holiday) and I wish you a happy new year in advance. Because I suspect that next week will be even quieter since at least _some_ of this past week was “this is my last pull request before Christmas.”
Another point that stands out is that a patch has been added for a PC keyboard driver, one that is not USB and older hardware that still supports the Linux kernel.
But let no one worry too much. As Linus says and we emphasize, the slow pace is due to the dates, and that “at least two more weeks” that can attract attention are this one we just entered and the next one, that of the eighth Release Candidate. It is only necessary that the rhythm recovers a little and that they do not find a serious failure for Linux 5.16 to reach the January 9th.