Free GNU/Linux distributions
The FSF is not responsible for other web sites, or how up-to-date their information is.
Below are the complete, ready-to-use GNU/Linux distributions we know follow the Guidelines for Free System Distributions. They have a firm policy commitment to only include and only propose free software. They reject non-free applications, non-free programming platforms, non-free drivers, or non-free firmware “blobs”. If by mistake they do include any, they remove it. If you have found such non-free software or documentation in one of these distributions, you can report the issue and earn GNU Bucks.
Other distributions are making efforts to move toward a completely free system. We thank them for their ongoing work to achieve that goal, and hope to list them here some day.
All of the distributions that follow are installable to a computer's hard drive and most can be run live.
We cannot make a general recommendation for using one over another, so they are listed here in alphabetical order. We encourage you to read these brief descriptions and even more to explore their respective web sites and other information to choose the one best for you.
Below is a list of small system distributions. These distributions are meant for devices with limited resources, like a wireless router for example. A free small system distribution is not self-hosting, but it must be developable and buildable on top of one of the free complete systems listed above, perhaps with the aid of free tools distributed alongside the small system distribution itself.
|LibreWRT GNU/Linux-Libre, a distribution for computers with minimal resources, such as the Ben Nanonote, ath9k based wifi routers, and other hardware.|
In addition to their own sites, many of these distributions are available from mirror.fsf.org. Feel free to download or mirror the distributions from there, preferably using rsync. Free distribution maintainers can request a mirror for their project by mailing the FSF sysadmins.
We list companies that sell hardware preinstalled with a free GNU/Linux distribution separately.
Individual GNU packages (most of which are included in the free distributions here) are described separately.
See something we missed?
Do you know about a distribution that you expected to find on our list, but didn't? First, check our page about why we don't endorse some common distributions. That page explains the reasons why several well-known distributions don't meet our guidelines. If the distribution isn't listed there either, and you think it qualifies for a listing under our guidelines, then please let the distribution's maintainers know about this page and encourage them to get in touch—we'd like to hear from them.
If you maintain a distribution that follows the Free System Distribution Guidelines and would like to be listed here, please write to us at <firstname.lastname@example.org> with an introduction and a link to the project Web site. When you do, we'll explain more about our evaluation process to you, and get started on it quickly. We look forward to hearing from you!