linux/Documentation/stable_kernel_rules.txt
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   1Everything you ever wanted to know about Linux 2.6 -stable releases.
   2
   3Rules on what kind of patches are accepted, and which ones are not, into the
   4"-stable" tree:
   5
   6 - It must be obviously correct and tested.
   7 - It cannot be bigger than 100 lines, with context.
   8 - It must fix only one thing.
   9 - It must fix a real bug that bothers people (not a, "This could be a
  10   problem..." type thing).
  11 - It must fix a problem that causes a build error (but not for things
  12   marked CONFIG_BROKEN), an oops, a hang, data corruption, a real
  13   security issue, or some "oh, that's not good" issue.  In short, something
  14   critical.
  15 - New device IDs and quirks are also accepted.
  16 - No "theoretical race condition" issues, unless an explanation of how the
  17   race can be exploited is also provided.
  18 - It cannot contain any "trivial" fixes in it (spelling changes,
  19   whitespace cleanups, etc).
  20 - It must follow the Documentation/SubmittingPatches rules.
  21 - It or an equivalent fix must already exist in Linus' tree.  Quote the
  22   respective commit ID in Linus' tree in your patch submission to -stable.
  23
  24
  25Procedure for submitting patches to the -stable tree:
  26
  27 - Send the patch, after verifying that it follows the above rules, to
  28   stable@kernel.org.
  29 - The sender will receive an ACK when the patch has been accepted into the
  30   queue, or a NAK if the patch is rejected.  This response might take a few
  31   days, according to the developer's schedules.
  32 - If accepted, the patch will be added to the -stable queue, for review by
  33   other developers and by the relevant subsystem maintainer.
  34 - If the stable@kernel.org address is added to a patch, when it goes into
  35   Linus's tree it will automatically be emailed to the stable team.
  36 - Security patches should not be sent to this alias, but instead to the
  37   documented security@kernel.org address.
  38
  39
  40Review cycle:
  41
  42 - When the -stable maintainers decide for a review cycle, the patches will be
  43   sent to the review committee, and the maintainer of the affected area of
  44   the patch (unless the submitter is the maintainer of the area) and CC: to
  45   the linux-kernel mailing list.
  46 - The review committee has 48 hours in which to ACK or NAK the patch.
  47 - If the patch is rejected by a member of the committee, or linux-kernel
  48   members object to the patch, bringing up issues that the maintainers and
  49   members did not realize, the patch will be dropped from the queue.
  50 - At the end of the review cycle, the ACKed patches will be added to the
  51   latest -stable release, and a new -stable release will happen.
  52 - Security patches will be accepted into the -stable tree directly from the
  53   security kernel team, and not go through the normal review cycle.
  54   Contact the kernel security team for more details on this procedure.
  55
  56
  57Review committee:
  58
  59 - This is made up of a number of kernel developers who have volunteered for
  60   this task, and a few that haven't.
  61
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