Why can a Kernel Panic occur in Linux?

Linux Kernel Panic

As you well know, the kernel panic (kernel panic), is an error message that is displayed by the kernel of a Unix-like operating system when something has happened that cannot be recovered. Usually, these messages provide debugging information that can be useful to know where the problem is coming from and that developers can solve these problems.

If you come from the world of Microsoft Windows, it is the equivalent of the famous BSoD (Blue Screen of the Death), that is, those famous blue screens that sometimes happen in these operating systems when something goes wrong. Only in * nix environments, they are known as kernel panic ...

Although many know well what a kernel panic is, and will even have suffered some of them at some point, not everyone knows all the possible causes why you can produce one on the Linux kernel of your favorite distro. Or perhaps, some do not know all the possible causes ...

For you to know the motivesHere is a list of the most frequent causes for a kernel panic to occur:

  • They can occur when initramfs image is corrupt. This system used during boot is vital for startup, and if something happens to it it can generate a kernel panic.
  • It can also occur when the initramfs was not created correctly for a specific kernel. Keep in mind that each kernel version needs its own initramfs. If this is not the case, you can get a kernel panic.
  • Another cause could be that the kernel is not properly installed or is not supported.
  • If none of the above occurs, you could also get a kernel panic due to patches or updates recent ones that have some kind of fault.
  • Another possibility is when a module It has been installed from the network or another source, but the initrd image has not been correctly created with this module installed.
  • When you want to read a invalid or illegal memory address. Whatever the reasons ...
  • Un hardware problem it could also generate a kernel panic. Or if a module or driver required for certain essential components is missing.
  • Certain exploitation actions of vulnerabilities kernel drivers or their drivers can also generate it by compromising the integrity of the system.

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  1.   Carlos Fonseca said

    The few times I have seen it it has been due to a hardware failure.

  2.   rolling said

    Since I use Linux in 2014, I have never had a kernel panic and that as soon as a new kernel came out, I installed it to my Ubuntu 14.04 that I had at that time

  3.   Dhouard said

    I only remember having kernel panic in the distant days when I recompiled the kernel to try to speed up the performance of my computer a little. Back in the early 2000s.

    Since then, no problem.