Helping the GNU Project and the Free Software Movement

Saying no to the use of a nonfree program or an online disservice on even one occasion helps the cause of software freedom. Saying no to using it with others helps even more. And if you tell them it is for defense of your freedom and theirs, that helps even more.

Beyond that, you can also help by volunteering to do work. This page lists many kinds of work we need.

For general questions about the GNU project, mail <> and for questions and suggestions about this web site, mail <>.

Help develop the GNU operating system

Please let the GNU Volunteer Coordinators <> know if you start a new package that you found in those lists. We want to keep track of what tasks are being worked on.

When writing software for GNU, please follow the GNU Coding Standards and Information for Maintainers of GNU Software documents.

We are sometimes offered software which already does substantially the same task as an existing GNU package. Although of course we appreciate all offers, we'd naturally like to encourage programmers to spend their time writing free software to do new jobs, not already-solved ones. So, before starting a new program, please check the Free Software Directory for free software that does the job already.

We can offer some resources to help GNU software developers.

The GNU Volunteer Coordinators <> can assist you if you would like to help developing GNU software. They will be able to put you in touch with other people interested in or working on similar projects. When you have selected a task from our task lists, please let them know you're interested in working on it.

Important new small-to-medium programs needed

Help support GNU development and use

This list is ordered roughly with the more urgent items near the top. Please note that many things on this list link to larger, expanded lists.

  • Help with Savannah. We are especially looking for technical sysadmin volunteers to help with underlying infrastructure support. Volunteers to help with pending project submissions are also very welcome. Please see this general information on how to become a savannah hacker. Please communicate with us on the savannah-hackers-public mailing list.
  • Organize a new GNU/Linux User Group.
  • Volunteer as a GNU Webmaster. Start by completing the webmaster quiz.
  • Translate the GNU Web site into other languages. Each translation team needs several members that are native speakers of the target language (and fluent in English), but it also needs at least one member that is a native speaker of English (and fluent in the target language.) More information about the issue can be found at the Guide to Translating the Web Pages. Write to <> if you want to help.
  • We need native English speakers with a good command of the language to proofread English text written by GNU package maintainers and other volunteers. These texts can be articles on various subjects related to free software, documentation, or sometimes GNU manuals that need to be prepared for printing. To help with this task, please subscribe to the low-traffic GNU documentation proofreaders list.
  • When you are talking with people that don't value freedom and community, you can show them the many practical advantages of free software (see Why Open Source / Free Software? Look at the Numbers! for some useful evidence). But keep mentioning the ethical issues too! Don't let their pressure change your voice into an open-source voice.
  • Make sure that essays from our philosophy section and other GNU URLs are linked to often in the appropriate categories. If you'd like to help us with this task, please contact the GNU Volunteer Coordinators <>.
  • Donate hardware to the FSF.
  • If you or your company work supporting or developing free software in some way, you can list yourself (or your company) in the Service Directory.
  • If you run a company that needs to hire people to work with free software, you can advertise on our Free Software Job Page.
  • Volunteer to contact companies and suggest that they use our Free Software Job Page to publish their job postings. If you would be interested in this, please contact <>.

Spread awareness about GNU and the Free Software Movement

Help improve is a repository that contains information about how well particular hardware works with free software.

Help is needed in:

For other ways to help, see For communicating with users/developers, use their mailing lists.

Volunteer with and donate to the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation is the principal organizational sponsor of the GNU Operating System. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of software freedom.

Like GNU, the FSF also gets a lot of its strength from volunteers. It's a great place to volunteer and a great community to join, especially if you don't have the technical background to contribute directly to free software development. Check out the FSF's volunteering page to get started or the homepage to learn more about the organization.

Support the FSF and the GNU Project financially by becoming an FSF associate member, donating to the FSF, purchasing manuals, t-shirts, stickers, and gear from the FSF, or by selling free software and donating some of the proceeds to the FSF or another free software organization. By funding development, you can advance the world of free software.