HOME
The Info List - GNU Project





The GNU
GNU
Project /ɡnuː/ ( listen)[3] is a free-software, mass-collaboration project, first announced on September 27, 1983 by Richard Stallman
Richard Stallman
at MIT. Its aim is to give computer users freedom and control in their use of their computers and computing devices, by collaboratively developing and providing software that is based on the following freedom rights: users are free to run the software, share it (copy, distribute), study it and modify it. GNU
GNU
software guarantees these freedom-rights legally (via its license), and is therefore free software; the use of the word "free" always being taken to refer to freedom. In order to ensure that the entire software of a computer grants its users all freedom rights (use, share, study, modify), even the most fundamental and important part, the operating system (including all its numerous utility programs), needed to be free software. According to its manifesto, the founding goal of the project was to build a free operating system and, if possible, "everything useful that normally comes with a Unix
Unix
system so that one could get along without any software that is not free." Stallman decided to call this operating system GNU
GNU
(a recursive acronym meaning "GNU's not Unix"), basing its design on that of Unix, a proprietary operating system.[4] Development was initiated in January 1984. In 1991, the Linux kernel
Linux kernel
appeared, developed outside the GNU
GNU
project by Linus Torvalds,[5] and in December 1992 it was made available under version 2 of the GNU
GNU
General Public License.[6] Combined with the operating system utilities already developed by the GNU
GNU
project, it allowed for the first operating system that was free software, known as Linux.[7][8] The project's current work includes software development, awareness building, political campaigning and sharing of the new material.

Contents

1 Origins 2 GNU
GNU
Manifesto 3 Philosophy and activism 4 Free software 5 Funding 6 Copyleft 7 Operating system
Operating system
development 8 Linux

8.1 GNU
GNU
Free System Distribution Guidelines

9 Strategic projects

9.1 GNOME 9.2 GNU
GNU
Enterprise

10 Recognition 11 See also 12 References 13 External links

Origins[edit] Richard Stallman
Richard Stallman
announced his intent to start coding the GNU
GNU
Project in a Usenet
Usenet
message in September 1983.[9] When the GNU
GNU
project first started they had an Emacs
Emacs
text editor with Lisp for writing editor commands, a source level debugger, a yacc-compatible parser generator, and a linker".[10] The GNU
GNU
system required its own C compiler and tools to be free software, so these also had to be developed. By June 1987, the project had accumulated and developed free software for an assembler, an almost finished portable optimizing C compiler (GCC), an editor ( GNU
GNU
Emacs), and various Unix
Unix
utilities (such as ls, grep, awk, make and ld).[11] They had an initial kernel that needed more updates. Once the kernel and the compiler were finished, GNU
GNU
was able to be used for program development. The main goal was to create many other applications to be like the Unix
Unix
system. GNU
GNU
was able to run Unix programs but was not identical to it. GNU
GNU
incorporated longer file names, file version numbers, and a crashproof file system. The GNU Manifesto was written to gain support and participation from others for the project. Programmers were encouraged to take part in any aspect of the project that interested them. People could donate funds, computer parts, or even their own time to write code and programs for the project.[4] The origins and development of most aspects of the GNU
GNU
Project (and free software in general) are shared in a detailed narrative in the Emacs
Emacs
help system. (C-h g runs the Emacs
Emacs
editor command describe-gnu-project.) It is the same detailed history as at their web site. GNU
GNU
Manifesto[edit] Main article: GNU
GNU
Manifesto The GNU
GNU
Manifesto was written by Richard Stallman
Richard Stallman
to gain support and participation in the GNU
GNU
Project. In the GNU
GNU
Manifesto, Stallman listed four freedoms essential to software users: freedom to run a program for any purpose, freedom to study the mechanics of the program and modify it, freedom to redistribute copies, and freedom to improve and change modified versions for public use.[12][13] To implement these freedoms, users needed full access to code. To ensure code remained free and provide it to the public, Stallman created the GNU General Public License (GPL), which allowed software and the future generations of code derived from it to remain free for public use. Philosophy and activism[edit] Main article: Free software
Free software
movement Although most of the GNU
GNU
Project's output is technical in nature, it was launched as a social, ethical, and political initiative. As well as producing software and licenses, the GNU
GNU
Project has published a number of writings, the majority of which were authored by Richard Stallman. Free software[edit] The GNU
GNU
project uses software that is free for users to copy, edit, and distribute. It is free in the sense that users can change the software to fit individual needs. The way programmers obtain the free software depends on where they get it. The software could be provided to the programmer from friends or over the Internet, or the company a programmer works for may purchase the software. Funding[edit] Proceeds from associate members, purchases, and donations support the GNU
GNU
project.[14] Copyleft[edit] Main article: Copyleft Copyleft
Copyleft
is what helps maintain free use of this software among other programmers. Copyleft
Copyleft
gives the legal right to everyone to use, edit, and redistribute programs or programs' code as long as the distribution terms do not change. As a result, any user who obtains the software legally has the same freedoms as the rest of its users do. The GNU
GNU
Project and the FSF sometimes differentiate between "strong" and "weak" copyleft. "Weak" copyleft programs typically allow distributors to link them together with non-free programs, while "strong" copyleft strictly forbids this practice. Most of the GNU Project's output is released under a strong copyleft, although some is released under a weak copyleft or a permissive free software license.[citation needed] Operating system
Operating system
development[edit]

GNU
GNU
Hurd live CD

Main article: GNU The first goal of the GNU
GNU
project was to create a whole free-software operating system. By 1992, the GNU
GNU
project had completed all of the major operating system utilities, but had not completed their proposed operating system kernel, GNU
GNU
Hurd. With the release of the Linux kernel, started independently by Linus Torvalds
Linus Torvalds
in 1991, and released under the GPL with version 0.12 in 1992, for the first time it was possible to run an operating system composed completely of free software. Though the Linux kernel
Linux kernel
is not part of the GNU
GNU
project, it was developed using GCC and other GNU
GNU
programming tools and was released as free software under the GNU
GNU
General Public License.[15] Linux[edit] Today a stable version (or variant) of GNU
GNU
can be run by combining the GNU
GNU
packages with the Linux
Linux
kernel, making a functional Unix-like system. The GNU
GNU
project calls this GNU/Linux, and the defining features are the combination of:

GNU
GNU
packages[16][17] (except for GNU
GNU
Hurd) The GNU
GNU
packages consist of numerous operating system tools and utilities (shell, coreutils, compilers, libraries, etc.)[16][17] including a library implementation of all of the functions specified in POSIX System Application Program Interface (POSIX.1).[18][19] The GCC compiler can generate machine-code for a large variety of computer-architectures.[20] Linux kernel
Linux kernel
– this implements program scheduling, multitasking, device drivers, memory management, etc. and allows the system to run on a large variety of computer-architectures.[21] Linus Torvalds released the Linux kernel
Linux kernel
under the GNU
GNU
General Public License in 1992;[22] it is however not part of the GNU
GNU
project.[23][24][25][26] non- GNU
GNU
programs - various free software packages which are not a part of the GNU
GNU
Project but are released under the GNU
GNU
General Public License or another FSF-approved Free Software License.

Within the GNU
GNU
website a list of projects are laid out and each project has specifics for what type of developer is able to perform the task needed for a certain piece of the GNU
GNU
project. The skill level ranges from project to project but anyone with background knowledge in programming is encouraged to support the project. The packaging of GNU
GNU
tools, together with the Linux kernel
Linux kernel
and other programs, is usually called a Linux
Linux
distribution (distro). The GNU Project calls the combination of GNU
GNU
and the Linux kernel
Linux kernel
"GNU/Linux", and asks others to do the same,[27] resulting in the GNU/ Linux
Linux
naming controversy. Today most Linux
Linux
distros combine GNU
GNU
packages with a Linux
Linux
kernel which contains proprietary binary blobs and a number of proprietary programs. GNU
GNU
Free System Distribution Guidelines[edit] The GNU
GNU
Free System Distribution Guidelines ( GNU
GNU
FSDG) is a system distribution commitment used to explain what it means for an installable system distribution (such as a Linux
Linux
distribution) to qualify as free (libre), and help distribution developers make their distributions qualify. Mostly this includes distributions that are a combination of GNU packages with a Linux-libre
Linux-libre
kernel (a modified Linux
Linux
kernel, that removes binary blobs, obfuscated code and portions of code under proprietary licenses) and consist only of free software (eschewing proprietary software entirely).[28][29][30] Distributions that have adopted the GNU
GNU
FSDG includes Dragora
Dragora
GNU/Linux-libre, gNewSense, Parabola GNU/Linux-libre, Trisquel GNU/Linux, Ututo, and a few others.[31] The Fedora Project distribution license guidelines were used as a basis for the FSDG.[32] Strategic projects[edit] See also: Free Software Foundation
Free Software Foundation
§ High priority projects From the mid-1990s onward, with many companies investing in free software development, the Free Software Foundation
Free Software Foundation
redirected its funds toward the legal and political support of free software development. Software development from that point on focused on maintaining existing projects, and starting new projects only when there was an acute threat to the free software community. One of the most notable projects of the GNU
GNU
Project is the GNU
GNU
Compiler Collection, whose components have been adopted as the standard compiler system on many Unix-like
Unix-like
systems. GNOME[edit] The GNOME
GNOME
desktop effort was launched by the GNU
GNU
Project because another desktop system, KDE, was becoming popular but required users to install Qt, which was then proprietary software. To prevent people from being tempted to install KDE
KDE
and Qt, the GNU
GNU
Project simultaneously launched two projects. One was the Harmony toolkit. This was an attempt to make a free software replacement for Qt. Had this project been successful, the perceived problem with the KDE
KDE
would have been solved. The second project was GNOME, which tackled the same issue from a different angle. It aimed to make a replacement for KDE that had no dependencies on proprietary software. The Harmony project didn't make much progress, but GNOME
GNOME
developed very well. Eventually, the proprietary component that KDE
KDE
depended on (Qt) was released as free software.[33] GNU
GNU
Enterprise[edit] GNU
GNU
Enterprise (GNUe) is a meta-project started in 1996,[34] and can be regarded as a sub-project of the GNU
GNU
Project. GNUe's goal is to create free "enterprise-class data-aware applications" (enterprise resource planners etc.). GNUe is designed to collect Enterprise software for the GNU
GNU
system in a single location (much like the GNOME project collects Desktop software). Recognition[edit] In 2001, the GNU
GNU
Project received the USENIX Lifetime Achievement Award for "the ubiquity, breadth, and quality of its freely available redistributable and modifiable software, which has enabled a generation of research and commercial development".[35] See also[edit]

Free software
Free software
portal

Free Software Foundation GNU
GNU
Free Documentation License List of GNU
GNU
packages 9965 GNU

References[edit]

^ "A Bold GNU
GNU
Head". Retrieved November 30, 2014. We thank Aurelio A. Heckert...for donating this graphic to us.  ^ "A GNU
GNU
Head". Retrieved November 30, 2014. This graphic was drawn by Etienne Suvasa  ^ "What is GNU?". The GNU
GNU
Operating System. Free Software Foundation. September 4, 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-09. The name "GNU" is a recursive acronym for "GNU's Not Unix!"; it is pronounced g-noo, as one syllable with no vowel sound between the g and the n.  ^ a b "The GNU
GNU
Manifesto". Free Software Foundation. July 21, 2007. Retrieved 2015-10-08.  ^ Torvalds, Linus Benedict (August 1991). "comp.os.minix". Retrieved 2009-09-06.  ^ z-archive of Linux
Linux
version 0.99[permanent dead link], kernel.org, December 1992 ^ Andrew D. Balsa; Coauthors. "The linux-kernel mailing list FAQ". The Linux
Linux
Kernel Archives. Kernel.org. Archived from the original on 2012-10-01. Retrieved 2013-06-13. ...we have tried to use the word "Linux" or the expression " Linux
Linux
kernel" to designate the kernel, and GNU/ Linux
Linux
to designate the entire body of GNU/GPL'ed OS software,... ...many people forget that the linux kernel mailing list is a forum for discussion of kernel-related matters, not GNU/ Linux
Linux
in general...  ^ Mark Shuttleworth
Mark Shuttleworth
(14 February 2014). "Losing graciously". Archived from the original on 22 March 2014. Retrieved 27 April 2014. today our focus is on the cloud and on mobile, and we are quite clearly leading GNU/ Linux
Linux
on both fronts  ^ Richard Stallman. "new Unix
Unix
implementation".  ^ Wardrip-Fruin, Noah; and Nick Montfort. "The GNU
GNU
Manifesto." The NewMediaReader. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT, 2003. pp.545-550. ^ "GNU's Bulletin, vol. 1 no. 3". gnu.org. June 1987.  ^ Stallman, Richard (March 1985). "The GNU
GNU
Manifesto - GNU
GNU
Project - Free Software Foundation
Free Software Foundation
(FSF)". gnu.org. GNU
GNU
Project. Retrieved 2011-10-18.  ^ Weber, S. (2004). The Success of Open Source. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. ^ Helping the GNU
GNU
Project and the Free Software Movement – GNU Project – Free Software Foundation. gnu.org. Retrieved on 2013-07-17. ^ Linus Benedict Torvalds (August 26, 1991). "What would you like to see most in minix?". comp.os.minix.  ^ a b "All GNU
GNU
packages". gnu.org.  ^ a b GNU
GNU
@ Free Software Directory (fsf.org) ^ POSIX - The GNU
GNU
C Library ^ GNU
GNU
C Library#A temporary fork ^ GCC Architectures ^ The Linux
Linux
Kernel Archives ^ Release Notes for Linux
Linux
v0.12 ^ Should the GNU/name convention be applied to all programs that are GPL'ed? GNU/ Linux
Linux
FAQ by Richard Stallman ^ Why do you write “GNU/Linux” instead of “ GNU
GNU
Linux”? GNU/ Linux
Linux
FAQ by Richard Stallman ^ Isn't it wrong for us to label Linus Torvalds' work as GNU? GNU/ Linux
Linux
FAQ by Richard Stallman ^ Does Linus Torvalds
Linus Torvalds
agree that Linux
Linux
is just the kernel? GNU/Linux FAQ by Richard Stallman ^ Why do you call it GNU/ Linux
Linux
and not Linux? ^ "Guidelines for Free System Distributions". gnu.org.  ^ "Avoiding Ruinous Compromises". gnu.org.  ^ "Explaining Why We Don't Endorse Other Systems". gnu.org.  ^ "List of Free Linux
Linux
Distributions – GNU
GNU
Project – Free Software Foundation". gnu.org. Retrieved 2014-08-18.  ^ "Free System Distribution Guidelines ( GNU
GNU
FSDG) - GNU
GNU
Project". gnu.org. publisher. Retrieved 2014-06-07. We would like to thank the Fedora Project for their help in focusing these policies, and allowing us to use their own distribution license guidelines as a basis for this document.  ^ Richard Stallman
Richard Stallman
(September 5, 2000). "Stallman on Qt, the GPL, KDE, and GNOME". Linux
Linux
Today. Retrieved 2005-09-09.  ^ Community History ^ " USENIX Lifetime Achievement Award
USENIX Lifetime Achievement Award
("The Flame")". USENIX. Retrieved 2007-12-05. 

External links[edit]

Official website The GNU
GNU
Free Software Directory GNU
GNU
Enterprise

v t e

GNU
GNU
Project

History

GNU
GNU
Manifesto Free Software Foundation

Europe India Latin America

History of free software

Licenses

GNU
GNU
General Public License GNU
GNU
Lesser General Public License GNU
GNU
Affero General Public License GNU
GNU
Free Documentation License GPL linking exception

Software

GNU
GNU
(variants) Hurd Linux-libre glibc Bash coreutils findutils Build System GCC binutils GDB GRUB GNOME GNUstep GIMP GNU
GNU
Ring GNU
GNU
Emacs GNU
GNU
TeXmacs GNU
GNU
Octave GNU
GNU
R GSL GMP GNU
GNU
Electric GNU
GNU
Archimedes GNUnet GNU
GNU
Privacy Guard Gnuzilla (IceCat) GNU
GNU
Health GNUmed GNU
GNU
LilyPond GNU
GNU
Go GNU
GNU
Chess Gnash Guix Guix System Distribution more...

Public speakers

Alexandre Oliva Benjamin Mako Hill Bradley M. Kuhn Eben Moglen Federico Heinz Georg C. F. Greve John Sullivan Loïc Dachary Matt Lee Nagarjuna G. Ricardo Galli Richard Stallman Robert J. Chassell

Other topics

GNU/ Linux
Linux
naming controversy Revolution OS Free Software Foundation
Free Software Foundation
anti-Windows campaigns Defective by Design

v t e

Free Software Foundation

People

Richard M. Stallman

GNU
GNU
Project

GNU
GNU
General Public License GNU
GNU
Lesser General Public License GNU
GNU
Affero General Public License

Other projects

Free Software Directory FSF Free Software Awards Free Software Foundation
Free Software Foundation
anti-Windows campaigns Defective by Design

Sister organizations

FSF Europe FSF Latin America FSF India League for Programming Freedom

See also

Comparison of Linux
Linux
distributions

v t e

Linux

Linux
Linux
kernel

History Kernel Linus's Law Linux-libre Linux
Linux
startup process Linux kernel
Linux kernel
oops Tux more…

Controversies

Criticism of Linux Criticism of desktop Linux GNU/ Linux
Linux
naming controversy Tanenbaum–Torvalds debate SCO and Linux

Distributions

General comparison Distributions list Netbook-specific comparison Distributions that run from RAM Lightweight Security-focused operating system Proprietary software for Linux Package manager

Package format List of software package managers

Organizations

Linux
Linux
Foundation Linux
Linux
Mark Institute Linux
Linux
User Group (LUG) Linux
Linux
Documentation Project LinuxChix Linux
Linux
Counter

Adoption

Desktop Embedded Mobile Gaming Linux
Linux
range of use List of Linux
Linux
adopters

Media

DistroWatch Free Software Magazine Full Circle Linux.com Linux
Linux
Format Linux
Linux
Gazette Linux
Linux
Journal Linux
Linux
Magazine LinuxUser

Ubuntu User

Linux
Linux
Outlaws Linux
Linux
Voice LugRadio LWN.net OMG! Ubuntu! Open Source For You Phoronix Revolution OS The Code

Linux Linux kernel
Linux kernel
features Portal:Linux WikiProject Linux

v t e

Free and open-source software

General

Alternative terms for free software Comparison of open-source and closed-source software Comparison of source code hosting facilities Free software Free software
Free software
project directories Gratis versus libre Long-term support Open-source software Open-source software
Open-source software
development Outline

Software packages

Audio Bioinformatics Codecs Collaboration Configuration management Device drivers

Graphics Wireless

Geophysics Health Mathematics Operating systems Programming languages Routing Statistics Television Video games Web applications

Content management systems E-commerce

Word processors Android apps iOS apps Commercial Trademarked Formerly proprietary

Community

Free software
Free software
movement History Open-source software
Open-source software
movement Organizations Events

Licenses

AFL Apache APSL Artistic Beerware Boost BSD CC0 CDDL EPL Free Software Foundation

GNU
GNU
GPL GNU
GNU
LGPL

ISC MIT MPL Ms-PL/RL Python Python Software Foundation License Sleepycat Unlicense WTFPL zlib

License types and standards

Comparison of free and open-source software licenses Contributor License Agreement Copyleft Debian Free Software Guidelines Definition of Free Cultural Works Free license The Free Software Definition The Open Source Definition Open-source license Permissive software licence Public domain Viral license

Challenges

Binary blob Digital rights management Hardware restrictions License proliferation Mozilla software rebranding Proprietary software SCO/ Linux
Linux
controversies Secure boot Software patents Software security Trusted Computing

Related topics

The Cathedral and the Bazaar Forking Microsoft Open Specification Promise Open-source hardware Revolution OS

Book Category Commons Portal

v t e

ERP software

List of ERP software
ERP software
packages

Open-source

Adaxa Suite Adempiere Apache OFBiz Compiere Dolibarr Epesi ERP5 ERPNext GNU
GNU
Enterprise HeliumV iDempiere inoERP IntarS Kuali LedgerSMB metasfresh Odoo Openbravo ERP Postbooks Tryton

Commercial

Acumatica Eclipse ERP FinancialForce.com JD Edwards
JD Edwards
Enterprise One Microsoft Dynamics 365 NetSuite Oracle ERP Cloud Oracle Applications Sage 300 SAP ERP Tally Solutions Traverse Unit4
Unit4
Business World

.