What is the Liquorix Kernel?

In the vast ecosystem of Linux, the kernel is the core of the operating system, acting as the bridge between software applications and the hardware of a computer. While the default Linux kernel serves a wide range of systems and configurations, there are custom kernels designed to cater to specific needs and use cases. One such custom kernel is the Liquorix Kernel. This article will explore the Liquorix Kernel, its features, and how it can enhance your Linux experience.

Introduction to Linux Kernels

Before we dive into the specifics of the Liquorix Kernel, it’s crucial to understand what a kernel is. In computing, a kernel is the central component of an operating system. It manages the system’s resources and facilitates communication between hardware and software components. In a Linux operating system, the kernel is responsible for task, disk, and memory management. Essentially, it’s the heart of the OS, ensuring everything runs smoothly and efficiently.

Default Linux Kernel vs. Liquorix Kernel

The default Linux kernel is designed to be a universal solution, providing broad compatibility across various systems and hardware configurations. It’s stable, reliable, and extensively tested. However, it may not always offer the best performance for specific use cases.

Enter custom kernels like Liquorix. The Liquorix Kernel is a custom Linux kernel designed for maximum responsiveness in interactive systems. It’s optimized for low latency computing in audio/video production and reduced frame time deviations in games. The Liquorix Kernel project aims to provide a more responsive and smooth Linux experience. It’s a community-driven project that combines the best features of other kernels with unique enhancements.

For older Linux distributions, switching to a custom kernel like Liquorix can provide significant performance improvements. However, it’s important to note that using a custom kernel may require more technical knowledge and may not be as stable as the default Linux kernel.

Features of the Liquorix Kernel

The Liquorix Kernel is packed with features designed to enhance your Linux experience. Here are some of the main features as listed on the official Liquorix website:

  • Zen Interactive Tuning: This feature tunes the kernel for responsiveness at the cost of throughput and power usage. It optimizes the performance of your system, ensuring that your system resources are used efficiently, leading to a smoother and more responsive experience.
  • PDS Process Scheduler: This is a fair process scheduler optimized for gaming, multimedia, and real-time loads. It ensures that your system can handle these types of workloads without any delays.
  • High-Resolution Scheduling: This feature provides a 1000Hz tick rate for precise low-jitter task scheduling. It ensures that your system can handle real-time tasks without any delays.
  • Preemptible tree-based hierarchical RCU: This is an RCU implementation for real-time systems. It ensures that your system can handle real-time tasks without any delays.
  • Hard Kernel Preemption: This is the most aggressive kernel preemption before requiring real-time patches. It guarantees a responsive system under high-intensity mixed workload scenarios.
  • Budget Fair Queue: This is a proper disk scheduler optimized for desktop usage, high throughput / low latency. It ensures that your system can handle large amounts of data without slowing down.
  • TCP BBR2 Congestion Control: This fast congestion control maximizes throughput, guaranteeing higher speeds than Cubic. It ensures that your system can handle large amounts of network traffic without slowing down.
  • Compressed Swap: This feature compresses swap storage with LZ4 using zswap. It ensures that your system can handle large amounts of memory without slowing down.
  • Multigenerational LRU: This alternative LRU algorithm performs better under high memory pressure and uptimes. It ensures that your system can handle large amounts of memory without slowing down.
  • Binary Builds For Popular Debian Distros: Binary builds are produced for Debian Stable, Testing, and Unstable. Ubuntu builds are available on the Liquorix PPA the same day within hours of Debian releases going up.
  • Distribution Kernel Drop-in Replacement: This feature supports a broad selection of hardware with proper distribution style configuration. Paravirtualization options are enabled to reduce overhead under virtualization.


In conclusion, the Liquorix Kernel is a powerful tool for Linux users looking for a more responsive and feature-rich system. However, it’s important to consider the potential drawbacks before deciding to install it. As with any custom kernel, it may not be as stable as the standard Linux kernel and may require more technical knowledge to install and use. But if you’re willing to put in the effort, the Liquorix Kernel can significantly boost your Linux experience.

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