CentOS – A Linux Based Free Operating System


Nothing is better than the sound of the word “free”. Be it with anything, pizzas, shipping except for a few things of course. Same is with operating systems. Nobody wants to pay a “fee” if you can get it for “free”. Although there have been free OS’s in the past but this one is surely worth looking out for.

CentOS or the Community Enterprise Operating System is the new player that has taken everyone by shock. It is a free LINUX based OS that is distributed for free by it’s developers. It is made from the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) distribution. The CentOS people believe in providing a free enterprise class computing platform to all those who wish to use it and want it for free, a few donations are always welcome of course. It is at par with the source code provider and fully in conformation with their redistribution policies so copyright infringement here. It is also 100% binary compatible with it’s upstream source, i.e Red Hat.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux is a paid service. It requires a fee for receiving updates and technical support, but the source code is made available to public by Red Hat. CentOS developers use this publicly available code to create their very own CentOS that doesn’t cost a penny. All of Red Hat logos and symbols are changed because of copyright policies and also Red Hat does not allow it. The final product is very similar RHEL.

CentOS is free. Technical support is given mainly through forums, blogs and chat rooms. CentOS is an independent organization. They do not affiliate with or work for anyone. They receive no funding from anywhere and rely totally on donations that their users give.

The OS became popular ever since it hit the market. It even beat Debian with almost 30% of all Linux based web servers using it. There are two versions numbers, the major and the minor one, which correspond to the major version and update set of RHEL that was used to develop the CentOS. As of now it only supports x86 architectures both 32 bit and 64 bit versions. Another was the Tao Linux which started independently but merged into CentOS via “yum update”. The ever so gaining popularity of the CentOS has surely cut RHEL off it’s market share and revenue and saved open source from it’s paid destruction.

You can get yours CenOS

Filed Under: Technology