Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD), distributed by the University of California, Berkeley in 1970 is the UNIX derivative that shares the initial code base and design with original UNIX of AT&T. The word BSD refers to any of the BSD descendants such as FreeBSD, OpenBSD, and NetBSD. Most of these BSD operating systems are open source that can be downloaded freely under BSD license.
Free BSD – Developed as a complete operating system, Free BSD runs on a wide variety of applications such as Intel x86 family (IA-32) PC compatible systems, DEC Alpha, Sun UltraSPARC, IA-64, AMD64, PowerPC, and NEC PC-98 architectures. It is reliable, robust operating system that reports uptime accurately. It can be scalable on high load network servers.
OpenBSD – Known for open source code and quality documentation OpenBSD focuses on security and code correctness. Its security policies reveal flaws publicly, with thorough auditing code. BSD or ISC license is required for OpenBSD. Its Kernel programs are developed as a single source repository. It maintains ports in 17 different platforms. .
NetBSD – is an open source BSD that emphasizes on portability and clean design. It offers freely distributable operating system that can be customized. It is interoperable with other operating systems. Known for stability and efficiency, NetBSD requires the 4-Claus BSD license.
- 1970 – Bell Labs distributed UNIX that comprised of source code to the operating system.
- 1974 – PDP-11 was installed.
- 1977 – Bill Joy assembled 1BSD.
- 1978 – 2BSD was released. VAX computer was installed at Berkeley.
- 1979 – 3BSD referred asVirtual VAX/UNIX or VMUNIX (for Virtual Memory Unix) was released.
- 1980 – 4BSD with numerous improvements over 3BSD was released.
- 1981 – 4.1BSD with systematically tuned up Kernel was released.
- 1983 – 4.2BSD was released after Bill Joy left BSD.
- 1986 – 4.3BSD with a lot of improvements in performance was released.
- 1989 – BSD moved away from VAX platform. 4.3BSD-Tahoe port proved efficient and separated machine dependent and machine independent codes.
- 1990 – 4.3BSD-Reno with POSIX compliance was released.
- 1991 – Net/2 formed a basis for two separate ports of BSD to the Intel 80386 architecture.
- 1992 – USL vs.BSDi lawsuit was filed.
- 1994 – Lawsuit settled in Berkeley’s favor. 4.4BSD was released in two forms.
- 1995 – 4.4BSD-Lite Release 2 was released and development of BSD at Berkeley was stopped.
Linux is free available Unix-like computer operating system. Its open source code can be freely modified, used, and redistributed by anyone. First public release, Linux kernel for the Intel x86-PC architecture was released in 1991. This kernel used system utilities and libraries from the GNU project that led to an alternate term, GNU/Linux. Today, Linux is packaged for different uses and tailored to different requirements. Linux is known for use in servers and is supported by giants like Dell, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Novell, Oracle Corporation, Red Hat, and Sun Microsystems.
- 1984 – Richard Stallman, founder of the GNU project started UNIX like system.
- 1985 – Free Software Foundation was formed and developed GPU General Public License for free distribution.
- 1990 – All program level components were implemented.
Ubuntu is a Debian GNU/Linux based operating system suitable for laptops, desktops and servers. Derived from African word, Ubuntu means “Humanity to others”. It is free and can be shared with friends, family or business. Its Long Term Support (LTS) version has free security updates for desktops and servers.
Fedora developed by the community-supported Fedora Project is open source software for Linux distribution. Its main purpose is to provide leading edge of technologies free. The latest version of Fedora is Fedora 8 released in November 2007.