The goal of The Fedora Project is to work with the Linux community to build a complete, general purpose operating system exclusively from free software. Development will be done in a public forum. The project will produce time-based releases of Fedora Core about 2-3 times a year with a public release schedule. The Red Hat engineering team will continue to participate in the building of Fedora Core and will invite and encourage more outside participation than was possible in Red Hat Linux. By using this more open process, Red Hat hopes to provide an operating system that uses free software development practices and is more appealing to the open source community.
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Debian is a free operating system (OS) for your computer. An operating system is the set of basic programs and utilities that make your computer run. Debian uses the Linux kernel (the core of an operating system), but most of the basic OS tools come from the GNU project; hence the name GNU/Linux.
Debian GNU/Linux provides more than a pure OS: it comes with more than 8710 packages, precompiled software bundled up in a nice format for easy installation on your machine.
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Ubuntu is a community developed operating system that is perfect for laptops, desktops and servers. Whether you use it at home, at school or at work Ubuntu contains all the applications you'll ever need, from word processing and email applications, to web server software and programming tools.
Ubuntu is and always will be free of charge. You do not pay any licensing fees. You can download, use and share Ubuntu with your friends, family, school or business for absolutely nothing.
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Gentoo is a free operating system based on either Linux or FreeBSD that can be automatically optimized and customized for just about any application or need. Extreme configurability, performance and a top-notch user and developer community are all hallmarks of the Gentoo experience.Thanks to a technology called Portage, Gentoo can become an ideal secure server, development workstation, professional desktop, gaming system, embedded solution or something else -- whatever you need it to be. Because of its near-unlimited adaptability, Gentoo is often referred to as a metadistribution.
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Slackware Linux is a complete 32-bit multitasking "UNIX-like" system. Slackware contains an easy to use installation program, extensive online documentation, and a menu-driven package system. A full installation of Slackware gives you the X Window System, C/C++ development environments, Perl, networking utilities, a mail server, a news server, a web server, an ftp server, the GNU Image Manipulation Program, Netscape Communicator, plus many more programs. Slackware Linux can run on 486 systems all the way up to the latest x86 machines (but uses -mcpu=i686 optimization for best performance on i686-class machines like the P3, P4, and Duron/Athlon).
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Mandriva Linux's goal has been from the start to turn Linux into something everyone can use. Mandriva strives to make our system as user-friendly, cutting-edge and intelligent as possible. Mandriva recognizes that most users want a system that "just works" and does not require hours upon hours of fine-tuning. Mandriva Linux is well-known for its ease-of-use and strong tradition of innovation. This recognition is embodied in the numerous awards Mandriva has received.
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