patchwork is a patch tracking system for community-based projects. It is intended to make the patch management process easier for both the project’s contributors and maintainers, leaving time for the more important (and more interesting) stuff.

Patches that have been sent to a mailing list are ‘caught’ by the system, and appear on a web page. Any comments posted that reference the patch are appended to the patch page too. The project’s maintainer can then scan through the list of patches, marking each with a certain state, such as Accepted, Rejected or Under Review. Old patches can be sent to the archive or deleted.

Currently, patchwork is being used for a number of open-source projects, mostly subsystems of the Linux kernel. Although Patchwork has been developed with the kernel workflow in mind, the aim is to be flexible enough to suit the majority of community projects.


The latest version of Patchwork is available with git. To download:

$ git clone

Patchwork is distributed under the GNU General Public License.


patchwork should supplement mailing lists, not replace them

Patchwork isn’t intended to replace a community mailing list; that’s why you can’t comment on a patch in patchwork. If this were the case, then there would be two forums of discussion on patches, which fragments the patch review process. Developers who don’t use patchwork would get left out of the discussion.

However, a future development item for patchwork is to facilitate on-list commenting, by providing a “send a reply to the list” feature for logged-in users.

Don’t pollute the project’s changelogs with patchwork poop

A project’s changelogs are valuable - we don’t want to add patchwork-specific metadata.

patchwork users shouldn’t require a specific version control system

Not everyone uses git for kernel development, and not everyone uses git for patchwork-tracked projects.

It’s still possible to hook other programs into patchwork, using the pwclient command-line client for patchwork, or directly to the XML RPC interface.

Getting Started

You should check out the Deploying Patchwork and Developing patchwork guides for information on how to get to work with patchwork.


For questions and contributions, please use the GitLab project.