Why is Fedora not a Free GNU/Linux distributions?

John Cornelius jc at hangarpilot.net
Fri Jul 18 00:00:49 UTC 2008

John Burton wrote:
> You can go back to the "Text Book" definition from Andrew Tennebaum 
> (sp?) who wrote the text book on Operating Systems used by most CS 
> courses. That definition is pretty close to what John originally 
> described. This parallels my original question of what causes people 
> to claim the O/S is "GNU/Linux". While I certainly agree that there 
> are alot of GNU tools packaged with Linux, those tools are also used 
> by alot of other O/Ss that people are not making similar claims about...

It's Andy Tanenbaum and in 1992 he wrote a scathing post on Linux. Linus 
responded and the exchange continued with a few others chiming in for 
over a week, not unlike the current discussion. Andy's primary complaint 
about Linux was that it wasn't a micro kernel operating system and Linus 
called the assertion brain dead I believe. The discussion became quite 
impolite but they apparently agreed that the kernel and its interface 
and management software (including the file system) were the operating 
system and everything else was something else. The exchange can be found 
at www.dina.kvl.dk/~abraham/Linus_vs_Tanenbaum.html if you're interested 
in historical trivia.

John Cornelius

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