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Kernel Downgrade possible for Ubuntu 16.04 & Derivatives?


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#1 cat1092

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 03:23 AM

Title fairly sums up the Topic. :thumbup2:

 

I was wondering, is it possible to introduce an earlier kernel into 16.04 LTS? Even by upgrade of 14.04, which would leave lots of configuration files behind (to newbies, kind of like Windows.old)? While still may not be possible, if it were, an upgrade install, even though a 3GB download is required versus a 1.8GB (or slightly larger) ISO for the 64 bit install. 

 

There would be a lot of configuration left behind, making me wonder if one can revert to an older kernel on the new OS. 

 

Has anyone tried this, and if so, what were the results? Those of us with AMD graphics cards needs an earlier kernel for 16.04 to properly function, and rather than point the finger at the one person to blame (which would lead to no solution & much chit-chat), would rather find a solution. 

 

Seems it would be possible somehow to use an earlier kernel, especially if the computer was upgraded, the prior configuration is somewhere on the drive. :thumbup2:

 

If we could come up with an 'in house' solution of our own, we'd have many Linux users, newbies & long term users alike, to join our Community. Probably more long term users, as 14.04 is two years old, many ran both 12.04 & 10.04, as well as 8.04 (all LTS releases) long before 16.04. It's certainly worth a shot, especially if others has successfully tried this. 

 

Secondly, would it be possible to open the ISO & inject the earlier kernels (or add in the correct folder of a built USB stick)? It never hurts to ask these questions, and may land someone big time if the ISO could be remastered or kernels added USB stick could accomplish the same. Anyone whom could remaster any 16.04 ISO to add an earlier kernel or two could strike it big, and there's no EULA preventing this. There's no such thing as 'impossible', for those that has the advanced skills necessary. If successful, these can be slipstreamed into install media & uploaded to one's storage with download links to share with fellow Linux users. :thumbsup2:

 

Speaking of which, what option are there to work with Linux install media? Windows/Mac solutions likely wouldn't work, either a .deb file or something within the Package Manager.

 

Though aside a pre written bootable USB stick, would have to learn the art of slipstreaming packages into Linux install media. Some has bundled Google Chrome, updated Firefox & other software, as well as drivers for unsupported hardware (such as wireless cards) into 14.04/12.04 LTS media, so know that there's a possibility. Though that & reality may be two different things when it comes to slipstreaming kernels. There's always the chance that this could break the OS & I'm aware of this. :thumbsup2:

 

Many Thanks for any answers & possible solutions that Community members has been working on & willing to share. :)

 

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#2 NickAu

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 03:43 AM

Can it be done? Yes.

Will It work? No idea.

 

Heres an example of how to install a kernel.

cd /tmp/

wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.3-wily/linux-headers-4.3.0-040300-generic_4.3.0-040300.201511020949_amd64.deb

wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.3-wily/linux-headers-4.3.0-040300_4.3.0-040300.201511020949_all.deb

wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.3-wily/linux-image-4.3.0-040300-generic_4.3.0-040300.201511020949_amd64.deb

sudo dpkg -i *.deb

You will need to reboot your PC and select the kernel version to boot from in Grub.

 

PS

 

What version do you want.

 

PPS

 

Heres my thread on kernel updates or in your case earlier versions and how to install them

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/558999/linux-kernel-updates-ubuntu/


Edited by NickAu, 23 June 2016 - 03:58 AM.


#3 mremski

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 04:05 AM

Pretty much any Linux distribution you can upgrade and downgrade kernels at will.  Typically just a matter of installing the correct package.  Make sure you INSTALL, not upgrade with the new package (otherwise it may overwrite the exsting one).  

That's the beauty of "kernel" versus "distribution".

There may also be a kernel firmware package that you should install alongside the new kernel package.

 

Kernel "configuration" pretty much all lives in /boot;  there should be no "kernel configuration" anywhere else on the system.  Closest would be kernel headers if you've installed them, kernel modules are part of the kernel package, they typically live in /usr/lib/modules/"kernelversion" (or something along those lines).

 

Grub lets you easily choose one, I'd edit /etc/grub.conf to increase the timeout and you can easily edit the "default" line in there to point it at the desired kernel.

 

Make sure that the issue lies with the kernel and not with the version of X installed.

 

Lots of times there are prebuilt packages for other versions of the kernel, CentOS look for the "ElRepo" stuff (because Centos/RH sticks with a kernel version for the life of a release, they selectively backport bits from newer kernels.  CentOS 6.7 the install kernel is "2.6.32-573", but it ain't 2.6.32, it's more like 3.something).

 

ISOs are simply a specially formatted drive.  On my FreeBSD system there are utilities (mkisofs to "make ISO FileSystem") that you invoke with a few labelling parameters and a directory structure where the files live.  Bootable ISOs take a bit more work, don't forget you need to muck around with installer bits to point at what you want to install (RedHat think of creating a Kickstart file).  Should be able to google up more than enough information on "how do I create a bootable Linux install disk".


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#4 cat1092

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 05:22 AM

So does the new or downgraded kernel gives what one needs to install an AMD graphics card w/driver support, or am I barking up the wrong tree? :)

 

 

Make sure that the issue lies with the kernel and not with the version of X installed.

 

 

That's the reason I ask, figuring the downgraded kernel will have the older X installed. I know how to install kernels, have done it, there were three separate downloads in .deb format, and each had to be installed in a certain order. Yet if this is not going to fix the 'X' issue, then it's worthless to perform. 

 

Is there's an older 'X' version that can be installed instead (or along with downgraded kernels), to have up to date AMD graphics drivers? Am still open to ideas on how to get it done. :)

 

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#5 mremski

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 05:30 AM

kernel package will not include X.  What it may/should include is any kernel support needed by the X driver.  Take the Intel i915 devices:  there are a couple of kernel modules needed by the X intel driver (i915, drm).  I am not sure if that is the same situation with AMD graphics, but if so, then a downgraded kernel should have whatever kernel side modules are needed. 

 

Is that sufficient to get AMD devices working on Ubuntu 16?  I have absolutely no idea.

 

If you have an install ISO for Ubuntu 14, I'd go mount it on a system running 16, pokearound for the kernel that would install for 14, and install it on 16 and reboot into it.  Heck I'd make sure the system does NOT reboot into graphical mode, typically runlevel 5, set it to boot to runlevel 3.  Then after logging in on the console, simply type in "startx" to get X going.  That would give you a little bit more control if something doesn't work.


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#6 vacuum-tube

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 06:01 PM

I think I would stay with Ubuntu 14.04 if it works for the graphics card your using.

 

For me I have had good luck with the open source AMD / ATI graphics driver in 14.04 and 16.04.

 

I'll be real interested to see what software changes and bug fixes come with the 16.04.1 release in the next month.



#7 MDD1963

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Posted 23 June 2016 - 07:51 PM

Anyone who has lived with Unity and the menu bar stuck on the side can likely live with it a few more months...

 

(I prefer the WinXp/Win7-like feel of Mint for desktops, and, Ubuntu servers are run headless.)


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#8 cat1092

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Posted 24 June 2016 - 03:51 AM

 

I'll be real interested to see what software changes and bug fixes come with the 16.04.1 release in the next month.

 

 

So will I, hopefully support for AMD graphics will be included. What Canonical did was basically blindsided those who runs AMD cards, not to count the millions on retails shelves not yet sold, plus 3 to 5 times as many APU's for building a new computer. Ubuntu used to be very AMD friendly, doesn't seem to be the case anymore. 

 

 

If you have an install ISO for Ubuntu 14, I'd go mount it on a system running 16, pokearound for the kernel that would install for 14, and install it on 16 and reboot into it.  Heck I'd make sure the system does NOT reboot into graphical mode, typically runlevel 5, set it to boot to runlevel 3.  Then after logging in on the console, simply type in "startx" to get X going.  That would give you a little bit more control if something doesn't work.

 

 

Assuming that Ubuntu 16.04.1 doesn't offer AMD support, some of what you're saying (or pointing to may be a great idea to research. To be able to open the 16.04 ISO, and purge the unwanted (or new) XOrg drivers, and use the ones from the 14.04 ISO instead. Surely the system would boot, and could ignore any packages for the latest software that was removed & related updates. It would be really remastering an ISO, and if successful, could link it to by Dropbox account. 

 

Sorry, but with Ubuntu, there is no EULA, anyone can use the software as they deem fit, Am a bit surprised that someone else hasn't done that on the 2nd day after release. :)

 

Basically, would be a modded Ubuntu install ISO, yet I need to do some serious reading on how to do this. I know how to slipstream drivers in XP/Vista/W7, yet have never bothered with a Linux ISO. 

 

Cat


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#9 MadmanRB

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Posted 24 June 2016 - 08:25 AM

Again the AMD issue was beyond the control of Canonical, AMD put the nail in the coffin for catalyst.

As for older kernels this is part of the appeal for me with Manjaro


Edited by MadmanRB, 24 June 2016 - 08:27 AM.

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#10 vacuum-tube

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Posted 24 June 2016 - 04:00 PM

Again the AMD issue was beyond the control of Canonical, AMD put the nail in the coffin for catalyst.

As for older kernels this is part of the appeal for me with Manjaro

Exactly the reason. For most if the open source doesn't work pretty much SOL. I have been lucky as the open source works for my old hardware.



#11 cat1092

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 04:04 AM

Again the AMD issue was beyond the control of Canonical, AMD put the nail in the coffin for catalyst.

As for older kernels this is part of the appeal for me with Manjaro

 

And how did AMD do this? They have untold millions of computers that are stocked on retail shelves, their warehouses well stocked, as well as online sites (to include those of OEM's) such as Newegg and many others, whom also carries massive backstock of APU's. These were known well before the release of Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. 

 

So exactly what did AMD do wrong, other than as any business, continue as usual? 

 

I'm dying to know the answer to this, since you've stated this at least twice, and these were the only ones I caught. What is the 'nail in the coffin' you're speaking of? On Windows OS's, there's been at least 2-3 recent upgrades to CCC, though the interface has changed, the functions offered are as good as ever. 

 

Had this been Microsoft, they'd had worked with their partners to ensure they're ready for the next OS, and Windows 10 runs on AMD cards just as nVidia ones. And one final thing, while I also prefer nVidia, at the same time, am glad that there's a choice in AMD. Because if now, we'd be paying a lot more for nVidia GPU's, a whole lot more, a basic 750 Ti (which is plenty good enough for Linux) would be $200 w/out any competition. We need AMD to survive, at least until another major competitor comes onto the scene. :)

 

Cat


Edited by cat1092, 27 June 2016 - 04:18 AM.

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#12 NickAu

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 04:23 AM

We are discussing a kernel down grade here. Not AMD and Canonical.

 

The question was can the kernel be downgraded?

 

The answer was yes it can.

 

Will it work? No idea.

 

The rest of the chit chat is irrelevant and off topic.



#13 cat1092

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 05:13 AM

We are discussing a kernel down grade here. Not AMD and Canonical.

 

The question was can the kernel be downgraded?

 

The answer was yes it can.

 

Will it work? No idea.

 

The rest of the chit chat is irrelevant and off topic.

 

Yes, you're right. :thumbup2:

 

It was just that my thinking that a kernel downgrade would give me all of the benefits of say 14.04 LTS, when the answer is far more complicated than that. :)

 

No need for further discussion here, being that this won't do what I wanted it to, have reached a dead end road. 

 

Though there was no harm in asking & I'm positive that this won't be the last time someone tries to make the new work using the old. :)

 

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