Hello there, as you you may know linux is an open source project, which means that the source code is freely available to the public. This means that anyone with enough programming knowledge can freely change/edit/modify the actual source code of the Operating System without fear of retribution from the original developers. Unlike say err.... Microsoft's operating systems in which case it is ILLEGAL to reverse engineer and modify core system modules, in other-words what's yours essential remains theirs as far as intellectual property rights go. So imagine thousands/millions of different programmers get hold of the Linux source code, all of these people have different needs of an operating system eg. some just need a web server, some just need a cheap network server and some just want a thin operating system that just has enough features to do one certain job etc. With so many brilliant minds (and some questionable ones) working towards the same goal, to make the operating system do exactly what they want and nothing more there are bound to be many variants. But it would be too hard for one person to produce a single operating system that only meets a certain persons needs then produce another for a different clientele, common interests produce common bonds so programmers band together to produce differing versions to meet differing needs.......horses for courses. Given twenty one years or so the options have become astoundingly numerous especially with the rise of the LIVE versions. Linux has even made an appearance on playstations and mobile phones. Personally i would love to see it ported to an xbox hehe. And all of this was done to make a computer to operate how YOU want not how someone else wants eg. a Billy Box ( a windows machine). Now go out there and make your choice.....but beware odds are you will still need a billy box for compataBILLity. Hehe....cheers
By the way there are too many version of linux to list and some have become commercial now. Do a GOOGLE on linux and you will get the idea, as for the differences well.....same goes. Support the penguin!!
This post so long because i thought it might help others who want to know or are interested in linux.
Edited by lucent, 22 May 2005 - 10:14 AM.