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Free Books from Other Publishers


We have long supported publication of free documentation (free in the sense of freedom—we don't mean gratis). free software needs free documentation because you must be free to copy, change and redistribute the documentation along with the software. To qualify as free, the documentation must be released under a free documentation license.

We publish a number of free books of documentation ourselves. You can order printed copies of our books, download them from the /gnu/Manuals directory on our ftp site and browse them online. We have been doing this since around 1986.

More recently, some commercial publishers have begun publishing free books. (Like our books, these are free in the sense of freedom; the commercially printed copies are sold.) On this page, we keep a list of these books that we have come across. If you find out about a free book that we don't have listed here, please let us know by emailing us at <free-books@gnu.org>.

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Table of Contents

Newer listings are placed at the top of each list.

Free books in English

Title Author Publisher ISBN License
The Org Mode 7 Reference Manual (for Org version 7.3) Carsten Dominik and others Network Theory Ltd 978-1-906966-08-9 GNU Free Documentation License
The PostgreSQL 9.0 Reference Manual (in four volumes) The PostgreSQL Global Development Group Network Theory Ltd 978-1-906966-
Modified BSD license
The Perl Language Reference Manual (for Perl version 5.12.1) Larry Wall and others Network Theory Ltd 9781906966027 GNU General Public License
GNU Octave Manual Version 3 J.W. Eaton et al. Network Theory Ltd. 095461206X Old GNU manual license
How Wikipedia Works Phoebe Ayers, Charles Matthews, and Ben Yates No Starch Press 9781593271763 GNU Free Documentation License
Valgrind 3.3 — Advanced Debugging and Profiling for GNU/Linux applications J. Seward, N. Nethercote, J. Weidendorfer et al Network Theory Ltd. 0954612051 GNU Free Documentation License
An Introduction to GCC Brian J. Gough Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-9-3 GNU Free Documentation License
Python Language Reference Manual Guido van Rossum and Fred L. Drake, Jr. Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-8-5 Python license
An Introduction to Python Guido van Rossum and Fred L. Drake, Jr. Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-6-9 Python license
The R Reference Manual - Base Package - Volume 1 The R Development Core Team Network Theory Ltd. 0-9546120-0-0 Old GNU manual license
The R Reference Manual - Base Package - Volume 2 The R Development Core Team Network Theory Ltd. 0-9546120-1-9 Old GNU manual license
GNU Bash Reference Manual Chet Ramey, Brian Fox Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-7-7 Old GNU manual license
Comparing and Merging Files with GNU diff and patch D. MacKenzie, P. Eggert, R. Stallman Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-5-0 GNU Free Documentation License
The GNU Scientific Library Reference Manual M. Galassi, et al. Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-0-X GNU Free Documentation License
An Introduction to R W.N. Venables, et al. Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-4-2 Old GNU manual license
GNU Octave Manual John W. Eaton Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-2-6 Old GNU manual license
Version Management with CVS Per Cederqvist, et al. Network Theory Ltd. 0-9541617-1-8 Old GNU manual license
Dive Into Python 3 Mark Pilgrim aPress 978-1430224150 GNU Free Documentation License
How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: Learning with Python, First Edition Allen Downey, Jeff Elkner and Chris Meyers Green Tea 0971677506 GNU Free Documentation License
Advanced Linux Programming, First Edition Mark Mitchell, Jeffery Oldham, and Alex Samuel New Riders 0-757-1043-0 Open Publication License, Version 1.0 (no options exercised) (See note below)
The Zope Book, First Edition Amos Latteier and Michel Pelletier New Riders 0-7357-1137-2 Open Publication License, Version 1.0 (no options exercised)
Linux Device Drivers, Second Edition Alessandro Rubini and Jonathan Corbet O'Reilly and Associates 0-596-00008-1 GNU Free Documentation License (See note below)
Effective awk Programming, Third Edition Arnold Robbins O'Reilly and Associates 0-596-00070-7 GNU Free Documentation License
GNU Autoconf, Automake, and Libtool Gary V. Vaughan, Ben Elliston, Tom Tromey, Ian Lance Taylor New Riders 1-57870-190-2 Open Publication License, Version 1.0 (no options exercised)
Debian GNU/Linux: Guide to Installation and Usage (Currently out-of-print) John Goerzen and Ossama Othman New Riders 0-7357-0914-9 GNU General Public License
GTK+/GNOME Application Development Havoc Pennington New Riders 0-7357-0078-8 Open Publication License, Version 1.0 (no options exercised)
Open Source Development with CVS Karl Fogel and Moshe Bar Paraglyph Press 1932111816 GNU General Public License
Producing Open Source Software: How to Run a Successful Free Software Project Karl Fogel O'Reilly and Associates 978-0596007591 Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0
Programming from the Ground Up Jonathan Bartlett Bartlett Publishing 0975283847 GNU Free Documentation License
Managing Projects with GNU Make, Third Edition Robert Mecklenburg O'Reilly and Associates 0-596-00610-1 GNU Free Documentation License
Using Samba, 2nd Edition Jay Ts, Robert Eckstein, David Collier-Brown O'Reilly and Associates 0-596-00256-4 GNU Free Documentation License
Version Control with Subversion Ben Collins-Sussman, Brian W. Fitzpatrick, C. Michael Pilato O'Reilly and Associates 0-596-00448-6 Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License
Motif Reference Manual, Vol. 6B, Second Edition Antony Fountain, Paula Ferguson O'Reilly and Associates 1-56592-654-4 Open Publication License, Version 1.0 or later

Free books in Spanish

Title Author Publisher ISBN License
Guía Compacta de Org-Mode Carsten Dominik
(translated by David Arroyo Menéndez)
Libremanuals 978-84-608-8894-9 GNU Free Documentation License
Software libre para una sociedad libre Richard Stallman Traficantes de Sueños 978-84-933555-1-7 GNU Free Documentation License
Manual de Referencia de Bash Brian Fox & Chet Ramney
(translation by Jorge Maldonado Ventura, revised by David Arroyo Menéndez)
Libremanuals 978-84-09-01157-5 GNU Free Documentation License
Note on Advanced Linux Programming, First Edition:
The June 2001 printing of this book failed to list the license notification properly. This printed edition says it is a proprietary book. The publisher has assured us that this was purely a printing error and that the intended license is “Open Publication License, Version 1.0, No options exercised”. Their errata page confirms this. They have assured us that the next printing will have the corrected license.
Note on Linux Device Drivers, Second Edition:
The printed edition failed to properly apply the GNU FDL; a copy of the GNU FDL is missing, and the license notice is not complete. O'Reilly will fix these problems in the next printing.

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