HowTo: Find Which Kernel Version Is Installed On My Linux System

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I am a new proud Linux user. My question to you is – how do I find which kernel version installed on my Linux system? How do I upgrade my kernel to latest version? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

The Linux kernel is the central (core) component of Linux operating systems. Its responsibilities include managing the system’s resources and the communication between hardware and software components.

How to check kernel version on Linux server/desktop/laptop?

You need to use then uname command to print certain system information including kernel name. Type the following command to print kernel version number:
$ uname -r
Sample outputs:


Another option is to type the following cat command:
$ cat /proc/version
Sample outputs:

Linux version 2.6.32-431.1.2.el6.x86_64 ( (gcc version 4.4.7 20120313 (Red Hat 4.4.7-4) (GCC) ) #1 SMP Sun Nov 24 09:37:37 EST 2013

Understanding uname command options

To print certain system information you use uname command. It has the following options:

  -a, --all                print all information
  -s, --kernel-name        print the kernel name
  -n, --nodename           print the network node hostname
  -r, --kernel-release     print the kernel release
  -v, --kernel-version     print the kernel version
  -m, --machine            print the machine hardware name
  -p, --processor          print the processor type or "unknown"
  -i, --hardware-platform  print the hardware platform or "unknown"
  -o, --operating-system   print the operating system

Related media

This tutorial is also available in a quick video format:

Video 01: Find The Linux Kernel Version Command Tutorial

See How DO I Upgrade Linux kernel?

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

8 comment

  1. this is the wrong ans posted on this page. the correct command to check the kernel version is

    # uname -v

    instead of #uname -r . the uname -r command display the kernel release.


  2. my samsung galaxy s11 phone has a pop up that says kernal panic upload do i update the latest kernal version for my phone?

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