The Hurd

Frank Heckenbach frank at
Tue Mar 19 13:51:15 UTC 2002

Werner Koch wrote:

> On Tue, 19 Mar 2002 00:37:29 +0100, Frank Heckenbach said:
> > "Almost everything" is not really true. Even today, the GNU system
> > uses a substantial number of components from BSD, X, TeX, etc. You
> And that was the plan nearly from the start of the GNU project.  The
> GNU project never said that all software has to be written from
> scratch for it; it just turned out that a lot of stuff needed to
> be written due to a lack of existing free implementations. 

Note that I don't deny it. I was just refusing Jeroen' claim that
"Almost everything was already there *written* by GNU." [emphasis by
me] which is clearly not true. "Collected" or "compiled" would have
been alright ...

> > developers really called it "GNU/Linux", someone like Alessandro
> > Rubini would have to speak of "GNU/Linux", even though his system
> > uses only the kernel Linux and no GNU parts. So please, get
> I don't understand this.  If you are using just the bare bone Linux
> kernel, the name Linux is what should be used.

Exactly. That's why Jeroen's statement '[Linus] only had to write a
kernel and a few other things. He misnamed this to "Linux" and
didn't credit GNU.' is also unreasonable. He is talking only about
the kernel (and perhaps some some utilities close to the kernel,
written by Linus etc.), so it's no misnaming to call this "Linux".

> > I hope the next one will be better researched.
> The Hurd is based on a lot of research.

Please don't quote me out of context. My statement clearly referred
to Jeroen's "history lesson", not to GNU, Linux or the Hurd.

> > Frank Heckenbach, frank at
> >
> So much GNU, so less GNU/Linux ;-)

Yes. I support GNU, I use GNU/Linux on my machines (and sometimes
work on GNU/Solaris and GNU/IRIX machines ;-). But I think attacking
Linux (the kernel) for not being called GNU/Linux, like Jeroen did,
does not help, but hurt the reputation of GNU.


Frank Heckenbach, frank at
GnuPG and PGP keys: (7977168E)

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