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Making switching,updating,and recompiling kernels a breeze
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Joined: 25 May 2003
Posts: 62
Location: Florida

PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2006 9:49 am    Post subject: Making switching,updating,and recompiling kernels a breeze Reply with quote

Being a proud gentoo user, I take pride in keeping my kernel as small and efficient as possible. But keeping up with the constant kernel updates and recompiles I seem to do so often it's hard to always stay on top. In all the time I've been using linux (only 3-4 years) I've never come to really appreciate the ~/.bash_profile

I've like the idea of using genkernel for some time, but never wanted to keep looking back for all the right commands to pass, so I finally just put it in my ~/.bash_profile as an alias, and installing new kernels is uber easy.

Make sure your /usr/src/linux is pointing to the right location.

ls -alF /usr/src

On the chance you don't already have it:


emerge genkernel

Now to add all the proper commands, this is specific to what I want, please change it unless you run grub, with vga=791, you have splashutils and want to run the makeopts=-j3 (use genkernel --help)

Edit your profile

nano -w ~/.bash_profile

This is what mine looks like


alias compilekernel='genkernel --oldconfig --bootloader=grub --install --gensplash --gensplash-res=1024x768 --makeopts=-j3 all'
alias nano='nano -w' ##makes nano NOT wrap text
fortune | beep -c -f 450 -D 10 -l 5 ### <-- Taken from

To update kernels just copy you .config to the new directory, run make oldconfig and update your /usr/src/linux symlink

Not much of a tip, but just one of those pet peves (sp?) I've had, so I thought I'd share.
Feel free to post any interesting .bash_profile's !
"Trust the computer industry to shorten ‘Year 2000’ to ‘Y2K’. It was this kind of thinking that caused the problem in the first place."

Just because it's common sense, doesn't mean it's common practice. - Will Rogers
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Joined: 19 Feb 2004
Posts: 73
Location: Orlando, FL

PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 5:54 pm    Post subject: Just a comment Reply with quote

Not to knock your suggestion, which seems good enough, but why are you re-compiling so frequently? In general, it is not necessary to update the kernel unless there is a new feature, bug fix, or security patch that is "mission-critical" for you. Now, if your Gentoo box is just a hobby and you are updating it for fun, then by all means have fun. But if you are doing some work on this machine, then it's probably best to avoid fixing what isn't broken. The reason I say this is that some people perceive Gentoo as a "high maintenance" distro that requires constant updating and recompiling. Yet the problem is not with Gentoo, but their decision (compulsion?) to constantly "emerge --rsync" and "emerge -e world" on a weekly basis. Just don't "burn out" and become another misinformed Gentoo hater!
For tips and examples, check out my software development and scientific programming blog
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Joined: 23 Mar 2006
Posts: 163
Location: Centreville, VA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't ever use it (I only upgrade kernels when I really feel like it), but I think this is a great idea for minor minor revisions (it does get slightly annoying when stable goes 2.6.16-r7, then -r9, then -r111213, after all).
Firefox is spelled F-i-r-e-f-o-x - only the first letter capitalized (i.e. not FireFox, not Foxfire, FoxFire or whatever else a number of folk seem to think it to be called.) The preferred abbreviation is "Fx" or "fx".

FF = Final Fantasy.
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