Is Linux kernel getting bloated ? Linus Torvalds says Yes!

September 24, 2009
Linux kernel bloat
A lot of bloat is creeping into the Linux kernel. This was the startling revelation made by none other than Linus Torvalds - Founder of the Linux kernel. He said this in his talk at LinuxCon - an event that brings together Linux gurus and open source leaders to provide collaboration and education space for all matters on Linux.

The word bloat is historically associated with Microsoft Windows because each major updates in the form of Windows Service Packs installs 100s of MB data on your machine.

The term "bloat" can be defined as software that provides minimal functionality while requiring a disproportionate amount of diskspace and memory. It is especially used for application and OS upgrades.

This is what Linus Torvalds said when the question on performance drops in each release of the kernel was posed to him (and I quote) :
We’re getting bloated and huge. Yes, it’s a problem.
I’d like to say we have a plan.
Sometimes it’s a bit sad that we are definitely not the streamlined, small hyper efficient kernel I envisioned 15 years ago. The kernel is huge and bloated and our iCache footprint is scary. There’s no question about that, and whenever we add a new feature, it only gets worse.
So do you think each version of Linux kernel is really providing marginal new features, all the while increasing the size of the kernel ?