What's the difference between Ubuntu and Linux?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Esulatell, Apr 8, 2009.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    #1
    It's bloody confusing :(
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #2
    Ubuntu is a distribution of Linux, meaning it puts together different pieces of Linux operating system and application software to make a complete, working installation.

    I guess a very loose analogy would be like explaining what the difference between a Dell and a Windows PC is. The Dell computer is a kind of Windows PC. It's generally compatible with the kinds of things Windows PCs are compatible with, although there may be some limitations based on choices Dell made (e.g. only supporting certain kinds of drives or certain memory modules).

    In the same way, Ubuntu is a production Linux environment that generally supports the things Linux supports, although sometimes only some of them based on decisions made in putting together the Ubuntu package.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    #3
    So Linux is what Ubuntu is based on?
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #4
    Yes. Ubuntu is Linux. It's just one variant of how it's put together.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    #5
    Ohh well then I guess it's not so complicated :) thanks :D
     
  6. JNB
    macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #6
    Just like OS X is Unix.
     
  7. macrumors 604

    ravenvii

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Location:
    Melenkurion Skyweir
    #7
    Sort of. Linux is basically the Linux kernel. All distributions are based on a Linux kernel. The rest, they cobble together various parts, such as desktop environments (KDE or GNOME, among many others), and so forth.

    A better analog is Mac OS X and UNIX. Mac OS X is it's own operating system, built off UNIX. There are other operating systems built off UNIX, such as Solaris and BSD.

    So Ubuntu is an OS, based on the Linux kernel.

    And for convenience's sake, we call all OSes based on the Linux kernel, Linux distributions. Other examples of Linux distros are Fedora, Debian and Mandriva.

    Colloquially, yes Ubuntu is Linux.

    In other words, if this is more (and hints at much more) than what you want to know, just know that Ubuntu is an OS, and be merry.

    On the other hand, if you want to learn more, Google and Wikipedia are your friends.
     

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