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Re: [Fsuk-manchester] How to respond to anti-GNU trolls?

From: Matt Lee
Subject: Re: [Fsuk-manchester] How to respond to anti-GNU trolls?
Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2007 17:14:57 +0000
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20071022)

Tim Dobson wrote:
> I recently encountered this in response to one of my emails on BBC
> backstage; what would you suggest I replied to him?

See below.

> Aside from the OS itself, I use (almost) exclusively free software
> (nearly all GPL) on my Windows machine I don't refer to it as
> GNU/Windows. Why should I refer to my Ubuntu machine as GNU/Llinux?
> rather than just Ubuntu or just Linux?

Windows is an operating system. GNU is an operating system.

Ubuntu is a brand name for a particular combination of the GNU/Linux OS
plus other software. Linux is a registered trademark for a kernel.

If Ubuntu replaced Linux with another kernel, would you expect them to
change their name? The GNU system can support many kernels, including:-

* Hurd
* Linux
* OpenSolaris
* FreeBSD's kernel
* NetBSD's kernel

> The lord and saviour RMS is wrong on this one, and prefers GNU/Linux
> for his ego. How's HURD going these days anyway?

GNU/Linux is the logical name for the GNU system with a Linux kernel.
It's preferred because it does two things - a) Calls attention to the
Free Software and the GNU Project b) Gives familarity with systems that
have a different kernel, such as GNU/Hurd, GNU/OpenSolaris, etc.

Progress on the Hurd is slow - when there are already several better
working kernels for the GNU system, it is difficult to get a critical
mass of developers to work on another kernel, when there are more
important free software projects to hack on.

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