Hold Off Debian Upgrades: Kernel 6.1.64 ext4 Bug Alert

A data corruption bug in Linux kernel 6.1.64-1 with possible data loss on ext4 file systems, delaying the release of Debian 12.3.

The scheduled release of Debian 12.3 today has been put on hold. This decision came after a bug was found in Linux kernel 6.1.64-1, which was linked to possible data corruption on systems with an ext4 file system.

The developers have issued an urgent advisory to users, especially cautioning those with unattended-upgrades configured on their systems.

The bug, documented under the identifier #1057843, poses a risk of data corruption. As a result, the team responsible for the 12.3 image release has decided to postpone the rollout to address these critical fixes.

Users are strongly advised to refrain from updating their systems at this time. If you attempt to update your system now, it will initiate downloading and installing all the required packages for transitioning to Debian 12.3.

This includes the “linux-image-amd64” meta-package, which corresponds to the Linux kernel version 6.1.64-1 and is currently known to have an issue.

Debian 12.3

Of course, we must make a necessary clarification. If you did upgrade to Debian 12.3, which uses ext4 as the default filesystem, this does not mean that your data will be corrupted, but rather that there is some risk of this happening.

The Debian developers are actively working on a solution, and updates will be provided as they become available. In the meantime, users can follow the progress and obtain more information about the bug by visiting the Debian bug tracking page here.

According to the latest information referencing the bug tracker, a patch in the upstream Linux kernel 6.1.65 addressed the issue, as v6.1.66-1 is expected to land in Debian 12.3.

Bobby Borisov

Bobby Borisov

Bobby, an editor-in-chief at Linuxiac, is a Linux professional with over 20 years of experience. With a strong focus on Linux and open-source software, he has worked as a Senior Linux System Administrator, Software Developer, and DevOps Engineer for small and large multinational companies.

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4 Comments

  1. I already updated to Debian 12.3. Am I safe if I reboot and from the Grub menu choose “Advanced Options” then choose “linux 6.1.0-13-amd64”? I think linux 6.1.0-13 loads the 6.1.55-1 kernel but am not sure.

  2. Dear sir,

    Just a few min. ago (sun dec 10 2023 09:30:06 EST), I just upgraded to
    Linux 6.1.0-15-amd64 ($ uname –kernel-release)
    Debian 6.1.66-1 ($ uname –kernel-version)
    Debian 12.4 (cat /etc/debian_version)

    and I’m using Debian stable.

    Gérard

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