History of Linux
There was a young man named Alxender Graham Bell. Bell had just patented his telephone and was having growing pains because the demand for his new investigation was so strong. Needing a bigger company he then went to the giant at the time, Western Union and asked them if they would buy his patent and his tiny company. He wanted $100,000 for the whole package. The president of the western union was ridiculous. The rest is history. A multi billion –dollar industry emerged and AT&T was born.
But Linux story begins after the invention of UNIX. All modern operating systems have their roots in 1969 when Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson developed the C language and the Unix operating system at AT&T Bell Labs. They shared their source code with the rest of the world, including the hippies in Berkeley California.
By 1975, when AT&T started selling Unix commercially, about half of the source code was written by others. The hippies were not happy that a commercial company sold software that they had written; the resulting (legal) battle ended in there being two versions of Unix: the official AT&T Unix, and the free BSD Unix.
Later numerous companies entered and each one of them had their own UNIX version.In the Eighties many companies started developing their own Unix: IBM created AIX, Sun SunOS (later Solaris), HP HP-UX and about a dozen other companies did the same. As the proprietary authority is owned by each company and the lack of central authority weaken UNIX.
And here is the first real root of Linux, when Richard Stallman aimed to end this era. His goal was to make an operating system that was freely available to everyone, and where everyone could work together. However, the GNU kernel, called Hurd, failed to attract enough development effort, leaving GNU incomplete.
The Nineties started with Linus Torvalds, a Swedish speaking Finnish student, buying a 386 computer and writing a brand new POSIX compliant kernel. His aim was a personal project to create a new operating system kernel which can be available for free. But soon he realized this project can be more productive if it gets support from other techies.
On 25 August 1991, he (at age 21) announced this system in a Usenet posting to the newsgroup “comp.os.minix.”:
Hello everybody out there using minix –
I’m doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won’t be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones. This has been brewing since april, and is starting to get ready. I’d like any feedback on things people like/dislike in minix, as my OS resembles it somewhat (same physical layout of the file-system (due to practical reasons) among other things).
I’ve currently ported bash(1.08) and gcc(1.40), and things seem to work. This implies that I’ll get something practical within a few months, and I’d like to know what features most people would want. Any suggestions are welcome, but I won’t promise I’ll implement them 🙂
PS. Yes – it’s free of any minix code, and it has a multi-threaded fs. It is NOT portable (uses 386 task switching etc), and it probably never will support anything other than AT-harddisks, as that’s all I have :-(.
— Linus Torvalds
Thousands of programmer began joining and working to enhance that kernel. Initially, this kernel was given the name- FREAX( cause it was FREE and X because it was similar to UNIX). In order to facilitate development, the files were uploaded to the FTP server (ftp.funet.fi) of FUNET in September 1991. Ari Lemmke at Helsinki University of Technology (HUT), who was one of the volunteer administrators for the FTP server at the time, did not think that “Freax” was a good name. So, he named the project “Linux” on the server without consulting Torvalds.
This is how Linux came to the World.
Now there are many linux distributions available in both free as well as paid version.
Read about Linux Distributions.
Source:Wikipediaa and Internet.