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List or Check Installed Linux Kernels

Q. How do I list all installed kernel on Linux operating system? How do I find out current kernel version?

A. You can use standard package listing command to list installed kernels.

RedHat / CentOS / RHEL / Fedora Linux user

You need to use standard rpm command to list installed software. Type the following command at shell prompt:
$ rpm -qa kernel


To list / display current kernel

Type the following command:
$ uname -r
$ uname -mrs


Linux 2.6.18-8.1.14.el5 x86_64

Debian / Ubuntu Linux user

Use dpkg command to list all installed kernel, enter:
$ dpkg --list | grep linux-image

ii  linux-image-2.6.20-15-generic        2.6.20-15.27                           Linux kernel image for version 2.6.20 on x86/
ii  linux-image-2.6.20-16-generic        2.6.20-16.32                           Linux kernel image for version 2.6.20 on x86/
ii  linux-image-generic                                 Generic Linux kernel image

{ 10 comments… add one }

  • Alamgir June 12, 2009, 12:53 pm

    thanks ! important information.

  • krishan kumar singh October 7, 2009, 5:37 pm


    it’s working thanks for information


    krishan kumar singh

  • jaydeep July 19, 2010, 9:10 am

    hey that works for Ubuntu…!

  • visitor September 4, 2013, 7:43 pm


    how to edit the boot order manually in Debian to choose a specific installed kernel to be the default one?


    • Erathiel January 16, 2014, 8:32 am

      You need to modify the bootloader configuration. If you haven’t been playing with your installation you’re using GRUB, so search for GRUB configuration tutorials.

      • visitor January 16, 2014, 9:12 am

        I just want to know the grub.cnfg path to edit it in Debian.

  • rohit July 28, 2014, 8:54 am

    hi, i am new to linux. i want to know what happens to the older kernel when i install a new kernel? does it overwrite? also explain me how do i find the path/location for both older and newer kernels! please help!

    • Fernando September 1, 2014, 3:30 pm

      @rohit, newer installed kernels do not overwrite existing kernels unless you delete them explicitly. So you can always choose to boot with the proved old one :-)
      As for the kernels location, it depends on where do you install them… In my case I always create a /boot partition, so there you could find all those kernels…
      Best of luck!

  • Wyatt February 18, 2015, 3:19 pm

    What if you have manually compiled and installed kernels that aren’t in the package manager?

  • Shraddha July 10, 2015, 6:22 pm

    Thanks for posting this! Helpful

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