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Would linux accept those patches?

It doesn't have to -- you can just have a loadable kernel module that takes over the network stack.

Such a thing would be very difficult to maintain given that linux refuses to provide a stable API.

Agreed, but it's possible (in theory, much like writing your own network stack).

Linux developers are very opposed to having their lovingly crafted network stack replaced with something crappy and/or proprietary (see TOE).

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