You have probably read my blogs and are wondering: Is it Ubuntu, Linux or GNU/Linux…I’m confused!

Well let me set the record straight, but in order to do this, I am going to have to give you a small history lesson.

In the 1990’s the now founder of ‘Linux’, Linus Torvalds was in Helsinki University working on an Operating System known as Minux (still exists now btw). According to Linus, this was missing a few things and the kernel (the foundation of the operating system) wasn’t as good as it could be. So as a hobby project Torvalds decided to begin writing his own kernel which he called Linux. After his initial version was complete he freely handed it out using a license known as the GNU license which enabled people to look at the code and alter it how they seen fit. He clearly pointed out also that it was just a hobby and he most likely would not maintain it.

At the same time there was a project of a new Operating System known as the GNU Operating System which was a free operating system. Unfortunately everything was in place except for a kernel. After Linus offered his created kernel which worked perfectly on the new OS, the new OS was born by the name of both projects merged: GNU/Linux.
The great shame however is that people began to forget the GNU part of the OS because most people seemed to have thought that Linux was what made everything click and soon it became a misunderstanding that this was simply a Linux OS, and the confusion spread to the part where we now only ever hear the title Linux OS.

The problem was though that GNU/Linux was running behind it’s competitors because they had simply a terminal (black screen, white writing) and no graphics. They then turned to a company which created a free graphical desktop named Gnome, and corporated this into the OS which made the OS look like it does today (unless your using KDE).
Many different companies or communities began making their own twist on the OS and using their name, some of the first were Slackware, RedHat and Debian.
Because these three made their version of the OS so stable and used a package system which was so much easier than compiling sourcecode, more companies and communities began twisting these already established ‘distributions of GNU/Linux’.
From that we got the likes of Mandrake (now Mandriva) which was based on RedHat and later on Ubuntu based on Debian.

So to round it off it is simply this. Debian was a distribution of the GNU/Linux OS which Ubuntu used to create it’s own Distribution.

And as for the official title…It is in fact GNU/Linux, and not so much Linux.

Oh, and incase you are wondering…According to the creator of the kernel, Mr Torvalds himself: Linux is pronounced ‘Lin-uhx’ not ‘Lie-nuhx’ or ‘Lee-nuhx’

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