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devinmcelheran 03-02-2009 09:20 PM

GNU Vs. Linux?
 
What's the difference between GNU and Linux?

taylor_venable 03-02-2009 09:24 PM

Linux is a kernel, GNU is a collection of tools. I tend to think of GNU more as a philosophy as well, which Linus doesn't always necessarily agree with.

devinmcelheran 03-02-2009 09:27 PM

What kinds of tools? And what philosophies would they disagree on?

pixellany 03-02-2009 09:30 PM

GNU came first---it is the acronym created by the founding fathers of Open Source---at what is now the Free Software Foundation. It is also one of the first "recursive acronyms"---decoding to "Gnu's Not Unix.

The vision for GNU was (and I assume still is) a complete OS, including the kernel and the utilities.

"Linux", to the purists, is just the kernel originated by Linus Torvalds.

The purists say that we are using "Gnu/Linux"---meaning that our various distros combine the Gnu utilities with the Linux kernel. The less pure are content to say that they are simply using Linux.

farslayer 03-02-2009 09:41 PM

plenty of GNU info at the links...

http://www.gnu.org/

http://www.fsf.org/

.
.


.

devinmcelheran 03-02-2009 09:43 PM

So GNU is any software that falls under open source? and Linux is GNU but so big it's just referred to by it's name other than GNU software?

pixellany 03-02-2009 10:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3463067)
So GNU is any software that falls under open source? and Linux is GNU but so big it's just referred to by it's name other than GNU software?

No---Gnu is maybe the **first** open-source SW, but certainly not the only. In the context of Gnu/Linux, Gnu is the source of most of the utilities.

Read some of the links provided in this thread and it will maybe be clearer.

Linux (the kernel) did not come out of the Gnu project---it uses Gnu utilities to make a complete OS.

taylor_venable 03-02-2009 10:13 PM

I don't think even the GNU folks would claim to be the first "open source" - like the very term, they came after the fact of what was already happening. From what I gather (as it was before I was born) sharing source was more common when everybody who used a computer was more-or-less a technical user and very often a programmer of that system.

pixellany 03-02-2009 10:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by taylor_venable (Post 3463092)
I don't think even the GNU folks would claim to be the first "open source" - like the very term, they came after the fact of what was already happening. From what I gather (as it was before I was born) sharing source was more common when everybody who used a computer was more-or-less a technical user and very often a programmer of that system.

I think you are right---but were they not the pioneers in Open-Source **Licenses**?

taylor_venable 03-02-2009 10:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pixellany (Post 3463095)
I think you are right---but were they not the pioneers in Open-Source **Licenses**?

Sure, that's not what I was getting at, but from my knowledge I would agree. Before that it had been fairly relaxed, and one of Stallman's main motivations (in the beginning) came from a perception (which was most likely pretty accurate) that companies were getting more tight-lipped about their code around technical users (there's that oft-told story about the printer driver). So the sharing of source wasn't new, but the perceived need to protect it was.

salasi 03-03-2009 07:43 AM

One has a G and the other has a L, U and an X. (& that's about as useful an answer as you'll get to a question like this.)

GNU is (as far as I am aware) an organisation; there is also GNU software, of which the tools are the most obvious, but there is also a kernel which has been in some state of not-quite-readiness for a few years, although I am sure that will change sometime 'real soon now'...err, as I have been for quite a few years.

Linux is a trademark (of one Linus Torvalds, of whom you may have heard); the Linux kernel is probably the object for which the name is most correctly used, but there are also Linux Distributions which package/compile/modify the kernel along with other components, including usually the Gnu tools, to make a useful, often easily installed, system.

So I'm unclear whether you want a comparison of an organisation to a trademark, or an organisation to a package of things on a CD/DVD or a download, but none of the above seem particularly constructive.

An organisation is probably bigger than a single CD, but it might be smaller than a whole warehouse full of CDs, if that helps.

pixellany 03-03-2009 07:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by salasi (Post 3463265)
GNU is (as far as I am aware) an organisation; there is also GNU software, of which the tools are the most obvious, but there is also a kernel which has been in some state of not-quite-readiness for a few years, although I am sure that will change sometime 'real soon now'...err, as I have been for quite a few years.

"Gnu" is a project: http://www.gnu.org/

Agrouf 03-03-2009 08:11 AM

Both GNU and linux are famous open source projects.
GNU is a big set of tools, perhaps the biggest open source project ever, used on almost any operating system.
Linux is a kernel used in many projects like Red Hat, Debian, Gentoo, Mandriva.
There are many other open source projects like GNOME, KDE, freedesktop.org, BSD and countless others (literally several hundreds of thousands of projects are open source, perhaps millions).
What is special about GNU is that their license is so well written that nowadays more than 80% of all open source projects use it (the GPL and LGPL), including linux.
What is special about linux is that it is the only (usable) kernel that use the GPL.

jstephens84 03-03-2009 08:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3463053)
What kinds of tools? And what philosophies would they disagree on?

Here is a link that describes what tools they have.

http://directory.fsf.org/GNU/

the most popular are probally its gnu compilers for c and c++ and I would say bison. as for philosophies that they disagree I would say the holy war of is linux (gnu/linux or just linux) It doesn't bother me which is which. Though I can say debian is one of the few distros that says gnu/linux while I believe fedora, openSuse, and madrivia just say linux.

Agrouf 03-03-2009 09:20 AM

I believe Mandriva says Mandrivalinux.
A true purist would say Mandriva/GNU/KDE/OpenOffice/Mozilla/linux, or Fedora/GNU/GNOME/OpenOffice/Mozilla/linux, but they would still be missing some credit.
Credit where is due, I say. Each distro should have a list of projects they use available and advertized, from the biggest ones to the smallest ones.

I believe the grief people have with linux is that GNU is a much bigger project, but people call their system just linux, although it is just a very small part of the system and GNU is bigger. It is important for GNU because they convey a philosophy along with software. They are loosing some credit space where linux is advertised when GNU is 10 times bigger.

devinmcelheran 03-03-2009 02:59 PM

Okay, I think I get it, my question was aimed more toward the difference as what they are, I knew Linux was the kernel, but I didn't know if Linux was part of GNU. But now I see why distros say GNU/Linux instead of one or the other. And on top of that I wasn't sure of this topic in general because I read that GNU was the first Unix operating system made entirely from open source. But I never found this "GNU operating system". So that was my main confusion.

XavierP 03-03-2009 03:08 PM

Linux was a kernel with no tools and GNU was a toolset with no kernel. Luckily, they were both available (and missing the essential parts) at roughly the same time and were able to work together to make GNU/Linux. That is why GNU advocates dislike it when we say Linux rather than GNU/Linux. Without GNU, Linux wouldn't have been an operating system base as quickly as it was.

synss 03-03-2009 03:16 PM

BTW, a kernel (e.g., Linux) is a set of "drivers," modules and deals with the lowest level of communicating with the hardware, including things like memory management, filesystems, or video drivers. Have a look at kernelnewbies.org or the LWN if you want a more accurate answer and if you have lots of time on your hands.

GNU provides programs like "ls", "cp" and "gcc", at a command prompt, you may try, e.g., "ls --version". These tools are already at a much higher level, they do not speak with the hardware but with the kernel. Imagine, if there were no kernel to abstract the hardware, you would need a different "ls" for pretty much every computer, depending on the brand of your hard disk drive or your filesystem. So GNU is Unix, Linux is not.

This is what GNU/Linux is about.

Richard Stallman, who is the father of GNU, believes that everything that sits on your computer should be free. This is a political statement. Linus does not care much about politics as far as I know. He just used the GPL because it fitted with his project.

There is a GNU kernel, named HURD, only, it never really worked. There are other kernel usable with the GNU tools, BSD, Darwin to name a few.

devinmcelheran 03-03-2009 03:28 PM

So how is GNU Unix but not Linux? I mean I knew Linux was "Unix like". But how is GNU Unix if it's not even a kernel? I thought the kernel was what made Unix, Unix?

synss 03-03-2009 03:46 PM

Probably I was not clear. The thing is, technically, you need both a kernel and the tools to have Unix, which is why purists call it GNU/Linux: Linux kernel + GNU tools, as there can be GNU/BSD, GNU/Darwin, and also, nothing prevents anyone to rewrite the GNU tools, in which case you could have a MySuperTools/Linux, etc. Linux and GNU are two different things, but you need both to do anything useful and call it Unix.

I should have said GNU/Linux is Unix but neither GNU nor Linux alone are.

devinmcelheran 03-03-2009 03:49 PM

Okay, I get it now, sort of, what is it that makes GNU/Linux Unix, or "Unix like"? And are Unix binaries runnable on GNU/Linux?

T74marcell 03-03-2009 08:04 PM

Richard Stallman would be offended by having GNU tools called as "open source", because it's "free software". Most people just don't care about the difference.

Stallman also would everyone to call Linux systems as GNU/Linux systems. I never heard him requesting Darwin to be called GNU/Darwin, or NetBSD to be called GNU/NetBSD, or GNU/SCO_Unix, etc etc (apply to all kind of UNIX-like systems). In the end it's just easier to talk about "Linux" instead of having a mouthfull of "GNU/Linux" each time. Most people talk about "Word" and "Excel" without saying "Microsoft Word" and "Microsoft Excel" each time. It's just easier to say or write the shorter names. So omitting the "GNU/" part in Linux is not really a philosophical matter.

Technically it is possible to to install a Linux system without any GNU tools at all - you'll have to get a kernel and all the tools that have a different license (non-GPL). Not necessarily efficient, but still possible.

----------
T74marcell

Arch Linux

sundialsvcs 03-03-2009 08:41 PM

Ultimately, I think that any "distinction" that might be made here matters a whole lot more to Mr. Richard Stallman [RSM] (who manages to make a tidy living from it...) than to anyone else.

Therefore, leaving any "religious arguments" aside, here's the distinction as I see it.

"Linux," strictly speaking, is an operating-system. Starting with a college-dorm-room project by Linus Torvalds, this system "happened to be in just the right place at just the right time." Thousands of people contributed to it, and continue to contribute to it, in a rather stunning example of "the whole is much greater than the sum of its parts." Today, it is a system that runs on more than 30 radically-different architectures.

Meanwhile... GNU.

GNU ("GNU's Not Unix") is, in some ways, a last-gasp of the proprietary software world, in the sense that it may have imagined itself to be beneficent. But regardless of its (real or intended) motivations, which are really anybody's guess, GNU wound up being a freely-available toolset. An absolutely stunning compiler-suite (gcc), a linker, a loader, and a bunch of fundamental Unix-esque components.

{Uh huh... "Linus did Linux, and Stallman did gcc, and both are "f**kin' :eek: " }

Bottom line? Symbiosis. Synergy. Neither Linux nor GNU would have been worth a rat's-ass without the other. Two essential tools came together at the same time... "and the rest is history."

GNU's pet-project was called HURD. The arrival of Linux on the scene made HURD "a non-issue, market-wise," but also "safely irrelevant."

Human personalities being what they are, some people will be quibbling about this for many years to come. But the bottom line, for both projects, is that "serendipity happened."

And a helluva lot of incredible software engineers ... specifically including both Messrs. Torvalds and Stallman ... richly and rightfully deserve the collective fame (and blame).

(jm2cw)

devinmcelheran 03-03-2009 09:56 PM

What is it that makes GNU/Linux Unix like? Is it possible to run a Unix binary in Linux or visa versa? And Mac being Unix, is it possible to run a Unix or Linux Binary on Mac?

synss 03-04-2009 02:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by T74marcell (Post 3463983)
I never heard him requesting Darwin to be called GNU/Darwin, or NetBSD to be called GNU/NetBSD, or GNU/SCO_Unix, etc etc (apply to all kind of UNIX-like systems).

That may be because they do not use the GNU toolset. From OS X (Darwin)
Code:

$ /bin/ls --version
/bin/ls: illegal option -- -
usage: ls [-ABCFGHLPRSTWabcdefghiklmnopqrstuwx1] [file ...]

They use BSD tools.

synss 03-04-2009 02:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3464076)
What is it that makes GNU/Linux Unix like? Is it possible to run a Unix binary in Linux or visa versa? And Mac being Unix, is it possible to run a Unix or Linux Binary on Mac?

There is no such thing as a Unix binary. You can install Linux softwares on OS X, see macports or Fink. Note that you can also install them on Windows with Cygwin.

Linux can run on a variety of machines, from mobile phones to PPC macs and modern multi-core multi-processor machines. All of these computers need different binaries because they have different CPUs.

When you run a binary, a program, the kernel kicks in action to decide when to actually execute it (maybe now, maybe when the load on the machine is lower); it choses which CPU to use, attributes some memory, hide whether the program is using swap or RAM, etc. But the binary has to ultimately execute on the CPU.

Moreover, even two machines with the same CPU may have incompatibilities. Languages like C++ use some obfuscation while being compiled, two different compilers or two different versions of GCC may use different obfuscation (name mangling) schemes and the resulting binaries will not be compatible.

Are you trying to do something special? Like run some old program compiled for another Unix on Linux? Or are you just curious?

You may also want to have a look at the wikipedia page about Unix.

devinmcelheran 03-04-2009 06:24 AM

I'm just looking to clear up some confusion, but every time some one adds to the thread, they make me a little more confused, I haven't gotten the clearest of answers, some were really good, but then others would oppose them. But overall, just curious.

Random question here: Is there a port of Wine for Mac?

pixellany 03-04-2009 06:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3464431)
Random question here: Is there a port of Wine for Mac?

Take a look here:
http://www.codeweavers.com/

(Crossover is the commercial version of WINE)

synss 03-05-2009 02:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3464431)
Random question here: Is there a port of Wine for Mac?

There was Darwine, but now, just "stock" wine compiles and installs on OS X, via macports or fink, for example. Apple has an X11 port, too, so that many free softwares work. I do not say they all integrate very well, though... but they do not have to!

healyma 03-05-2009 07:54 AM

Going to try and summarise this as best I can.

GNU was started by RMS (Richard Matthew - or Math-you, as he prefers - Stallman) and the FSF or free software foundation. According to the FSF the terms Free Software and Open Source software are not the same. Free Software is based on the philosophy that ALL software should have it's source code freely available for modification and re-distribution. Proprietary software should not be used. Open Source is a method of sharing and collaborating on a software project by releasing it's source code into the public domain.

The GNU GPL by the FSF is one the most common open source licenses in use today, others include the Mozilla License and the Apache License - as used by the Apache webserver, Apache Tomcat etc.

GNU Hurd was a free (intellectually) Operating System proposed over 20 years ago by the FSF to ultimately replace proprietary OSes. The Cathedral and the Bazaar, by ESR (Eric S. Raymond) details the different philosophies and development practices of the FSF and early Linux developers, and goes some way to explain why GNU Hurd was never completed. RMS and the FSF decided that Linux should be named GNU/Linux as opposed to simply Linux and that this was the natural successor to GNU Hurd - Linux Torvalds etc. were never consulted on this decision to change the name.

Referring to Linux as GNU/Linux reflects more on an underlying philosophy rather than any difference in features etc. Debian and Ubuntu call it GNU/Linux, Fedora and Red-Hat call it Linux - both include many of the same packages, while Debian is less likely to include proprietary drivers or other non-free software etc.

Basically, if you believe all software should be free to modify and distribute - regardless of the wishes of the original developer(s) - you use Free Software in the form of GNU/Linux and believe that RMS is a hero/legend/father of Free Software.
On the other hand, if you believe that developers and software communities should be free to license their work in any manner they see fit - and let users decide whether or not to use it, you use Open Source Software in the form of Linux and believe RMS is a ******.

Mark

theYinYeti 03-05-2009 09:11 AM

Agrouf, credit is important, but that's not the point here.

KDE, Gnome, Mozilla… are NOT part of the operating system; they are applications.

The operating system we use is small; very small. It doesn't have a GUI, much like old DOS except it is much more powerfull and versatile. All else is applications.
To some people, X11 and the desktop will seem mandatory; to some it won't. To some people, the browser will be where the office suite, and the mail, and the chat, and so on… will be, hence mandatory; to some it won't.

The operating system is the part at the core where you still have user-level access. Our OS is:
— a kernel,
— basic tools that live in /bin and /sbin and permit usage of the system by the user.

For most of us, this OS is GNU/Linux because the first part is the Linux kernel, and the second part is made of the command-line GNU tools.

For some others, it may be not quite so clear; eg: I don't know where busybox stands in the picture. And some don't even use Linux but still use GNU tools, eg: GNU/Hurd.

Yves.

[edit]Oops… once again I missed the whole second page!

Agrouf 03-05-2009 09:17 AM

If a software respect the four freedoms, then it is free software:
* The freedom to run the program, for any purpose (freedom 0).
* The freedom to study how the program works, and adapt it to your needs (freedom 1). Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
* The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor (freedom 2).
* The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements (and modified versions in general) to the public, so that the whole community benefits (freedom 3). Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html

If you can see the code of the software, then it is open source. The author of open source software does not have to grant you the right to modify it or to use it as you see fit to make it open source. This is the main difference between open source software and free software.
For example, SAP release open source ABAP code for you to see, but you have to ask them to modify it and you can't do it yourself. this is open source software but not free software.

You don't have to adhere to any philosophy to use any software.

ErV 03-05-2009 09:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3463047)
What's the difference between GNU and Linux?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_kernel

Agrouf 03-05-2009 09:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by theYinYeti (Post 3465782)
...

According to me, neither GNU nor linux nor GNU/linux are operating systems.
They are tools or classes of operating systems.
According to me, Debian is an operating system, Mandriva is an operating system, FreeBSD is an operating system, Windows XP is an operating system, Symbian is one, AIX is another, etc... but GNU/linux is not an operating system.

I believe "GNU/linux" could be considered a "class" of operating systems, like 'UNIX', or 'Windows', but that one is very close to UNIX/POSIX.

The distinction here is shady. There are classes and subclasses of operating systems. We define them according to the context when it is useful. For instance, we can define a class of 'debian-based distros', that is GNU+linux+apt-get+sysV init+everything that is specific to debian and derivatives. This is useful because some deb files will install on any system of that class. Examples: Debian, Mepis, Ubuntu, ...
Another instance of OS class is POSIX-compatible. This one is useful because some tar.gz source code will compile on them. This class is anything that can provide the interface that comply with POSIX standard (all the standard commands and APIs). Examples: GNU/linux, AIX, MacOS-X and several other systems.
You can define as much class as you need.
Some other examples of OS classes: Windows 64bit, Windows 32bit (XP, 95, 98), Unix (AIX, HP-UX, ...), busybox (a class of its own), linux (all linux distros and routers), GNU/linux (all linux distros that use GNU), linux 2.24, KDE-based distros, minimal distros, Open source systems....

It all depends on the context and what language is useful in that context.

theYinYeti 03-06-2009 04:07 AM

Indeed, that's food for thought, especially the Posix and Win32 part IMO.

I still think that the GUI and GUI tools are not part of the OS. On the other hand, the compiler / building chain, and some APIs, as well as the package management may well belong to the OS.

Yves.

brianL 03-06-2009 04:20 AM

There was a thread a while ago in the non-linux general forum about the Linux v GNU/Linux controversy. I always use GNU/Linux, simply for the reason of giving credit where credit is due.

synss 03-07-2009 05:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Agrouf (Post 3465820)
Some other examples of OS classes: Windows 64bit, Windows 32bit (XP, 95, 98)

That's getting off topic but XP is based on NT, like 2000 and Vista; 95 and 98 are not, I would definitely not put them in the same bag. Sorry again for the off topic, but I could not resist.

devinmcelheran 03-11-2009 09:07 AM

What is the difference between xp and 2000? What is NT?

Agrouf 03-11-2009 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by devinmcelheran (Post 3471836)
What is the difference between xp and 2000? What is NT?

I believe NT is the kernel based on DOS and windows is the desktop environment. xp and 2000 use 2 different DE and vista use another one. xp and 2000 are 2 distros of windows that use a different DE. Each windows distro has several branches, like 'premium' and 'expert' or 'student'. Each branch has a different selection of packages. I believe only the 'ultimate' version of vista has the grep command installed by default. You can install packages from third parties or buy them from Microsoft to have a full system, but it is less expensive if you buy the packages you want bundled in the distro. Usually, you want the basic 'Internet explorer' (web browser) and 'Wordpad' (office suite) bundled so it doesn't cost you too much, but if you have enough money, you can have 'Office' (database and office suite), 'Photoshop' (image editing), 'Outlook' (email client), and 'winzip' (file archiver tool) bundled with the distro so you don't have to pay for them later. After you have downloaded the windows distro (xp, 2000 or vista), you must pay for each package, so some people prefer buying a DVD with vista 'premium' with everything bundled, instead of xp 'home' with just the minimal 'internet explorer'. This may seem strange and expensive, but it is actually cheaper because of the TCO (Total Cost of Ownership).

malekmustaq 03-11-2009 11:49 AM

GNU Vs. Linux?
What's the difference between GNU and Linux?
======

devinmcelheran:

Are you having a "term paper" about the subject? You are more interested on what points GNU and Linux "disagree". The reasonings by the big boys above are sufficient, with the links to gnu.org and fsf.org you have enough to get a good mark. Good luck.

T74marcell 03-11-2009 01:25 PM

Quote:

>> I never heard him requesting Darwin to be called GNU/Darwin,
>> or NetBSD to be called GNU/NetBSD, or GNU/SCO_Unix, etc etc (apply to all kind of UNIX-like systems).

That may be because they do not use the GNU toolset. From OS X (Darwin)
I once experimented with pure Darwin (no OS X stuff) and it had GCC by default. So far I was under the impression that GCC is somehow related to GNU and Stallman :-)

The main point is:
Is it reasonable to call any system GNU/system-name, just because it has any GNU application running?
If I install any GNU tools on Windows, do I have to call it GNU/Microsoft Windows?

Arch Linux

Agrouf 03-11-2009 03:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by T74marcell (Post 3472157)
I once experimented with pure Darwin (no OS X stuff) and it had GCC by default. So far I was under the impression that GCC is somehow related to GNU and Stallman :-)

The main point is:
Is it reasonable to call any system GNU/system-name, just because it has any GNU application running?
If I install any GNU tools on Windows, do I have to call it GNU/Microsoft Windows?

GNU tools are available for Windows with cygwin.
Anyway, I believe the problem is that the GNU project was meant to be a full OS, from the kernel (the hurd) to the tools. Unfortunately, the Hurd was never ready and several people made a full system from GNU with linux. Nowadays it does not mean much because all linux distros use so many software from so many projects that GNU is just a set of tools among many. the problem is that we call those projects just 'linux', but that was just meant to be a kernel for the GNU project. Actually, free software has taken some big momemtum and went in all directions since GNU started. Today we talk about FOSS.

sundialsvcs 03-11-2009 10:54 PM

To clarify, "NT" was Microsoft's original 32-bit-native operating system (excluding OS/2).

All current Windows versions are technically NT-derived.

synss 03-12-2009 02:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by T74marcell (Post 3472157)
I once experimented with pure Darwin (no OS X stuff) and it had GCC by default. So far I was under the impression that GCC is somehow related to GNU and Stallman :-)

The main point is:
Is it reasonable to call any system GNU/system-name, just because it has any GNU application running?
If I install any GNU tools on Windows, do I have to call it GNU/Microsoft Windows?

GCC is not part of what constitutes an OS. As I said, try ls --version on darwin, it will not work, then try man ls, it is from BSD. The tools you need on top of the kernel so that it qualifies as an OS are ls and the like. Not GCC. No, it is not enough to have a couple GPL'd softwares to make a GNU OS. You need the core utility + the kernel.

And NT is not based on DOS! Do you guys know about wikipedia? It is not because this is a Linux forum that you should say random things about Windows. Plus, the shell (explorer.exe) is not part of the OS, just look for "alternative shell" on google to convince yourself.

On Darwin:
Code:

DF(1)                    BSD General Commands Manual                    DF(1)

NAME
    df -- display free disk space

Code:

LS(1)                    BSD General Commands Manual                    LS(1)

NAME
    ls -- list directory contents

Code:

CAT(1)                    BSD General Commands Manual                  CAT(1)

NAME
    cat -- concatenate and print files

Clearly, not GNU but BSD!

Agrouf 03-12-2009 03:53 AM

Sorry, my bad.
Indeed, NT is a separate kernel that is compatible with DOS but written from scratch. Is that correct?

crashmeister 03-12-2009 04:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by T74marcell (Post 3463983)
Technically it is possible to to install a Linux system without any GNU tools at all - you'll have to get a kernel and all the tools that have a different license (non-GPL). Not necessarily efficient, but still possible.

Could you enlighten me how you would accomplish that because I really don't see it?

To start with you'd miss gcc and the whole toolchain.

salasi 03-12-2009 06:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Agrouf (Post 3471917)
I believe NT is the kernel based on DOS and windows is the desktop environment. xp and 2000 use 2 different DE and vista use another one. xp and 2000 are 2 distros of windows that use a different DE. Each windows distro has several branches, like 'premium' and 'expert' or 'student'. Each branch has a different selection of packages. I believe only the 'ultimate' version of vista has the grep command installed by default. You can install packages from third parties or buy them from Microsoft to have a full system, but it is less expensive if you buy the packages you want bundled in the distro. Usually, you want the basic 'Internet explorer' (web browser) and 'Wordpad' (office suite) bundled so it doesn't cost you too much, but if you have enough money, you can have 'Office' (database and office suite), 'Photoshop' (image editing), 'Outlook' (email client), and 'winzip' (file archiver tool) bundled with the distro so you don't have to pay for them later. After you have downloaded the windows distro (xp, 2000 or vista), you must pay for each package, so some people prefer buying a DVD with vista 'premium' with everything bundled, instead of xp 'home' with just the minimal 'internet explorer'. This may seem strange and expensive, but it is actually cheaper because of the TCO (Total Cost of Ownership).

and
Quote:

Sorry, my bad.
Indeed, NT is a separate kernel that is compatible with DOS but written from scratch. Is that correct?
There are differences between the ways different people define the edges of the OS and what do, and what do not, constitute 'add-ons'. For example, for legalistic reasons, Microsoft once decided that it would be a good thing if the browser (provided it was Internet Exploder) should constitute part of the OS and not be an add on.

This decision was either an attempt to hoodwink the various authorities looking into anti-competitive behaviour or a bizarre and imbecilic architectural decision (or, err, both), but I think you have to say, if Microsoft are prepared to pay the cost of doing something stupid, it is up to them to do it.
  • NT isn't a kernel. It is an OS (which has, as part of it, a kernel) and includes much that I would consider to be add-ons beyond both the basic kernel and OS.
  • NT isn't derived from DOS. It was a 'clean(ish) sheet of paper, fom the ground up' OS. It can run DOS programs (is that what you mean by compatible?) in an 'emulated DOS box' and is aware of various DOS conventions like filenames.
  • All of the Windows line of operating systems include (minor) changes to the UI, with, in general, the UI becoming more refined as time goes on. However, in Windows the UI is a tightly bound part of the OS and since you can't in the recent versions run one without another, separating features of UI and those of the underlying OS isn't really meaningful.
  • Windows doesn't have 'distros' in any meaningful way. The difference between Win 2000 and Win XP is more like something like Fedora Core 6 and Fedora 8.
  • If the third party apps that you install are zero cost, it does not make any sense to pay Microsoft extra to get them in order to save money. I haven't installed grep on Windows, but as grep is a FSF package, doesn't that mean its free?
  • I'm not sure what point you are trying to make about bundling, but programs like Photoshop (not an MS program) aren't available in an official bundle with Windows; you might get a discount on buying Office and Windows together, but whether you would consider that a true bundle is unclear.

Crashmeister wrote:
Quote:

Could you enlighten me how you would accomplish that because I really don't see it?

To start with you'd miss gcc and the whole toolchain.
Unless you have a source-based distro, you don't need a compiler. Someone does, but the person doing the installing doesn't. And, the compiler doesn't have to be gcc; you could build with icc, if you really wanted to and wanted to restrict your options.

crashmeister 03-12-2009 07:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by salasi (Post 3473038)
and

Unless you have a source-based distro, you don't need a compiler. Someone does, but the person doing the installing doesn't. And, the compiler doesn't have to be gcc; you could build with icc, if you really wanted to and wanted to restrict your options.

You can't build a distro w/o gnu tools afaik.It's not making sense to claim that you don't need gnu tools because other people already built the binaries useing gnu tools - that's like claiming electricity is made in the plug.

I doubt binaries built with the free as beer version of ICC are redistributable plus ICC also depends on gnu tools.

Don't get me wrong I am not in support of that political bickering that goes on lately but I just don't see any practical way you could build a Linux distro w/o gnu.

salasi 03-13-2009 04:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crashmeister (Post 3473055)
You can't build a distro w/o gnu tools afaik.It's not making sense to claim that you don't need gnu tools because other people already built the binaries useing gnu tools - that's like claiming electricity is made in the plug.

I really don't see your analogy here; if electricity is made in the plug, you could wander around with an electric appliance and the mains electricity would still be there to operate it, and it isn't. If your distro depends on components that are built with a compiler the compiler needs to be present where the components are built.

Quote:

I just don't see any practical way you could build a Linux distro w/o gnu.
Of course that is not what I argued. I didn't say it was a practical thing to do and I didn't say that, in practice, the person or organisation building the distro would want to do it without gnu.

crashmeister 03-13-2009 05:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by salasi (Post 3474037)
If your distro depends on components that are built with a compiler the compiler needs to be present where the components are built.

I was responding to a post claiming that you could install Linux w/o gnu tools which is probably right but the post was slightly unclear on the difference between installing and building a distro:

Quote
Technically it is possible to to install a Linux system without any GNU tools at all - you'll have to get a kernel and all the tools that have a different license (non-GPL). Not necessarily efficient, but still possible.
End Quote

Now even if that would be possible (which I highly doubt) the installation would be basically unworkable because you would be missing a lot of apps and libraries that are needed by other things to maintain the installation.

But all this is really besides the point which is:

Without GNU tools and libraries there is no way to make/maintain a working Linux installation.

I'd be happy and install it at once if anybody proves me otherwise because I am fed up with the bickering from the RMS camp.


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