Recently, Greg Kroah-Hartman, linux kernel developer and maintainer, announced that end-of-life (EOL) support for Linux kernels 4.19 and 5.4 was extended from two to six years, from 2024 to 2025. During this time, they can continue to port bugs backward and get some important security fixes.
The Linux kernel is divided into stable and long-term support versions. Stable versions are released every 8-10 weeks, and long-term versions are available every two years and are available for security and bug fixes for the next two years.
In general, the maintainer of the LTS kernel version is responsible for determining the time period of the LTS lifecycle. In 2017, Google senior engineer Iliyan Malchev announced that the Linux kernel team had agreed to extend the long-term support (LTS) maintenance period for some Linuxs from two to six years. This is also the first time that an LTS kernel has been extended in its life cycle, a change that began with Linux Kernel 4.4.
Long-supported kernel versions are used to port older kernel tree bug fixes backward, and only important bug fixes apply to such kernels. They usually don’t send out frequently, especially for older trees. Currently, there are six ltS cores supported for six years: 5.4, 4.19, 4.14, 4.9, 4.4, and 3.6.