Commit bc6bed48 authored by Sarah Sharp's avatar Sarah Sharp

Docs: Expectations for bug reporters and maintainers

Outline how often it's polite to ping kernel maintainers about bugs, and
suggest that kernel maintainers should respond to bugs in 1 to 5
business days.

Emphasize that regressions, userspace breakage, and kernel crashes are
exceptions to that rule.  Suggest escalation to LKML and Linus if these
bugs are ignored during the merge window.
Signed-off-by: default avatarSarah Sharp <>
Acked-by: default avatarLinus Torvalds <>
parent 2c97a63f
......@@ -117,4 +117,44 @@ summary from [1.]>" for easy identification by the developers.
[X.] Other notes, patches, fixes, workarounds:
Thank you
Follow up
Expectations for bug reporters
Linux kernel maintainers expect bug reporters to be able to follow up on
bug reports. That may include running new tests, applying patches,
recompiling your kernel, and/or re-triggering your bug. The most
frustrating thing for maintainers is for someone to report a bug, and then
never follow up on a request to try out a fix.
That said, it's still useful for a kernel maintainer to know a bug exists
on a supported kernel, even if you can't follow up with retests. Follow
up reports, such as replying to the email thread with "I tried the latest
kernel and I can't reproduce my bug anymore" are also helpful, because
maintainers have to assume silence means things are still broken.
Expectations for kernel maintainers
Linux kernel maintainers are busy, overworked human beings. Some times
they may not be able to address your bug in a day, a week, or two weeks.
If they don't answer your email, they may be on vacation, or at a Linux
conference. Check the conference schedule at for more info:
In general, kernel maintainers take 1 to 5 business days to respond to
bugs. The majority of kernel maintainers are employed to work on the
kernel, and they may not work on the weekends. Maintainers are scattered
around the world, and they may not work in your time zone. Unless you
have a high priority bug, please wait at least a week after the first bug
report before sending the maintainer a reminder email.
The exceptions to this rule are regressions, kernel crashes, security holes,
or userspace breakage caused by new kernel behavior. Those bugs should be
addressed by the maintainers ASAP. If you suspect a maintainer is not
responding to these types of bugs in a timely manner (especially during a
merge window), escalate the bug to LKML and Linus Torvalds.
Thank you!
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