Non-Linux FOSS

If you're a Linux fan, there's a bit of a tendency to think that Linux and open source are two ways of saying the same thing. However, plenty of FOSS projects exist that don't have anything to do with Linux, and plenty of projects originated on Linux that now are available on other systems.

Because a fair share of our readers also use one of those other operating systems, willingly or unwillingly, we thought we'd highlight here in the coming months some of the FOSS projects that fall into the above categories.

We probably all know about our BSD brethren: FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD and so on, but how many of us know about ReactOS? ReactOS is an open-source replacement for Windows XP/2003. Don't confuse this with something like Wine, which allows you to run Windows programs on Linux. ReactOS is a full-up replacement for Windows XP/2003.

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I've got to agree. I think

Mus's picture

I've got to agree. I think most would agree that a huge stack of non-Linux, FOSS apps are already deeply embedded in the enterprise.

React OS.... needs alot of work.

venomfang's picture

Good idea but still nowhere near stable enough even for network use.

Developers really need to look at implementing SMB/CIFS via samba, at least get domain / workgroup options available.

Also having the Arrow buttons on the file explorer working would be a nice touch, as well as the address bar working.

From what I've seen this will be in alpha for a long time...

non-OS FOSS examples

Anonymous's picture

I noticed that you only mentioned OSes which are FOSS. There are a number of non-OS FOSS software packages as well. To me, one of the most important is OpenSSL. Linux and all the *BSDs use this for their SSL processing. In the same way, OpenSSH is also a critical piece of non-OS FOSS software. And, last but definitely not least, all the Apache software.

Just thought I'd mention them for good measure.

Also Important

Mitch Frazier's picture

Without a doubt openssl/h and apache are important but they are such common components of a Linux system that they not very *non* Linux, which is the point here: to highlight FOSS projects which aren't heavily associated with Linux. That said, as you imply by saying "Apache software", there are numerous Apache projects beyond the web server and some of those probably should be highlighted.

Mitch Frazier is an Associate Editor for Linux Journal.

interesting but...

erlik's picture

I think that ReactOS is an interesting project, don't get me wrong, but I am not sure it will ever come to full fruition.

To become viable this project should probably receive as many resources as WINE, and it looks like this is currently not the case. Now they did great things with the resources they have but I am not sure there is a real drive in the FOSS community for such a project (which in a way is a shame because this could get a lot of people that are reluctant to switch to Linux off Windows).

Not exactly a replacement

Anonymous's picture

ReactOS isn't exactly a replacement for Windows. The goal is "is to provide an operating system which is binary compatible with Windows" but it's still at an early alpha stage of development and definitely "not recommended for everyday use".

It's an interesting project though and I keep popping back to see how they're getting on. My personal view is that it's a very ambitious project and they'll be lucky if they ever get it to beta. But I guess if they wanted something easy they'd have gone to the beach. :-)

IMHO another intresting (and

Gasp's picture

IMHO another intresting (and working) open source OS is Haiku,inspired by BeOS.