FSF updates list of free GNU/Linux distributions, adding Kongoni

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA — Friday, September 11, 2009 — The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today announced updates related to its list of fully free GNU/Linux distributions, including the addition of one new distribution called Kongoni, and a milestone release of the Trisquel system.

Trisquel, which was added to the list last December, has issued its 3.0 release, codenamed “Dwyn.” It is the first in a new series of short term support releases that will be updated every six months with new software to add features, improved performance, and hardware compatibility.

Kongoni, named after the Shona word for “gnu,” is based in Africa. For optimal performance with minimal bandwidth requirements, it uses a packaging system called “ports” that downloads programs as source and builds them automatically.

Trisquel, Kongoni, and the other GNU/Linux system distributions on the FSF’s list only include and only propose free software. They reject nonfree applications, nonfree programming platforms, nonfree drivers, nonfree firmware “blobs,” and any other nonfree software and documentation. They uphold a commitment to remove any such components as they are discovered — a commitment most well-known GNU/Linux distributions do not follow.

FSF operations manager John Sullivan said, “It’s very encouraging to see this list continuing to increase in both quality and quantity. While others continue to propagate the outdated claim that it’s too hard or not possible to make distributions without proprietary binary firmware and other nonfree programs, free software activists and developers working on projects like Kongoni and Trisquel continue to prove them wrong.”

Both Trisquel and Kongoni are calling for more contributors to help. Trisquel is seeking mirrors, package maintainers, beta testers, translators, and documentation writers. Kongoni is looking for people to help with publicity, and writing new package ports. More information about using and contributing to Trisquel and Kongoni can be found at their respective Web sites, http://trisquel.info/ and http://kongoni.co.za/.

The FSF’s guidelines for free system distributions are online at http://www.gnu.org/distros/free-system-distribution-guidelines.html, and the distributions committed to those guidelines are listed at http://www.gnu.org/distros/free-distros.html.

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