How To Find Which Linux Kernel Version Is Installed On My System

I am a new proud Linux user. My question to you is – how do I check Linux Kernel version? How do I find my Linux Kernel Version installed on my PC? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Introduction : 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. It also maintains the security of your system. Hence, finding out the version information is a good idea for patching and other sysadmin management tasks.
Tutorial details
Difficulty Easy (rss)
Root privileges No
Requirements None
Time 1m

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Commands to find your Linux Kernel Version

To check Linux Kernel version, try the following commands:

  1. uname -r : Find Linux kernel version
  2. cat /proc/version : Show Linux kernel version with help of a special file
  3. hostnamectl | grep Kernel : For systemd based Linux distro you can use hotnamectl to display hostname and running Linux kernel version

Let us see all commands and examples in details.

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:

4.15.0-39-generic

So my Linux kernel version is 4.15.0-39, where:

  • 4 : Kernel version
  • 15 : Major revision
  • 0 : Minor revision
  • 39 : Patch level or number
  • generic : Linux distro/kernel specific additional info

Understanding uname command options

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

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

Find Linux kernel using /proc/version file

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

Linux version 4.19.2 (vivek@nixcraft-asus.nixcraft.com) (gcc version 7.3.0 (Ubuntu 7.3.0-27ubuntu1~18.04)) #1 SMP Fri Nov 16 01:38:13 IST 2018

How to find your Linux Kernel version using hostnamect

Type the hostnamectl command along with grep command:
$ hostnamectl
$ hostnamectl | grep Kernel

Find Linux Kernel Version Installed On My System

Related media

This tutorial is also available in a quick video format:



Video 01: Find The Linux Kernel Version Command Tutorial

Conclusion

You learned three diffent commands to display and show Linux kernel version on screen. For more info see the following pages too:

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10 comments… add one
  • thirumurthy Aug 12, 2009 @ 9:17

    want to learn linux commands

  • thirumurthy Aug 12, 2009 @ 9:18

    i want to use linux commands

  • sqrlking Aug 17, 2009 @ 15:29

    or you could $ ls /lib/modules

    :)

  • Hmm Jan 22, 2010 @ 2:57

    Just type “uname -a”

  • satish Oct 15, 2011 @ 5:47

    hi i need information on ftp
    and some commands to for ftp

  • satish Oct 15, 2011 @ 5:48

    how to bring a binary to windows desktop from linux using ftp

  • varun Feb 21, 2013 @ 12:59

    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.

    Varun

  • stella Apr 8, 2013 @ 15:10

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

  • John May 26, 2015 @ 11:13

    How to check kernel version? How do I find Linux kernel version using at shell prompt? Run
    more /proc/version
    awk '{ print "Your Linux Kernel version: ", $3}' /proc/version

  • razer Sep 15, 2020 @ 15:30

    We can also use
    sudo dmesg | grep Linux

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