28 December 1969, Helsinki, Finland
Developer of Linux an Open Source Operating System that belongs to the UNIX family of OS's.
In 1991 Linus Torvalds, a 21-year-old computer science student at the University of Helsinki, Fin., having just purchased his first personal computer (PC), decided that he was not satisfied with the computer's operating system (OS). His PC used MS-DOS (the disk operating system from Microsoft Corp.), but Torvalds preferred the UNIX operating system he had used on the university's computers. He decided to create his own PC-based version of UNIX. Months of determined programming work yielded the beginnings of an operating system known as Linux that, eight years later, developed into what many observers saw as a genuine threat to mighty Microsoft and its seemingly ubiquitous Windows OS. By 1999 Torvalds becomes a cult hero to a devoted band of computer users.
Operating Linux required a certain amount of technical acumen; it was not as easy to use as more popular operating systems such as Windows, Apple Computer Inc.'s Mac OS, or IBM's OS/2. Because its volunteer developers prided themselves on the quality of their work, however, Linux evolved into a remarkably reliable, efficient system that rarely crashed. Linux got its big break in the late 1990s when competitors of Microsoft began taking the upstart OS seriously. Netscape Communications Corp., Corel Corp., Oracle Corp., Intel Corp., and other companies announced plans to support Linux as an inexpensive alternative to Windows. As this scenario took shape, Linux devotees and the media delighted in portraying Torvalds as David out to slay the giant, Bill Gates, Microsoft's cofounder and CEO.
Torvalds said he had no qualms with Gates's or Microsoft's financial success--he simply detested poorly engineered software. By 1999 an estimated seven million computers were running on Linux, still available free of charge, and many major software companies had announced plans to support it. Meanwhile, Torvalds had taken a position with Transmeta Corp., owned by Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen, working on a top-secret project that many in the high-tech community assumed would involve some future assault on the Microsoft empire.(1)
in Helsinki, Finland.
Stallman created the Free Software Foundation (GNU project).
of the Unix Operating System by Marice J. Bach was published. Minix
to the University . The same year Minix emerged.
Takes his first C programming class.
start of infamous Novell vs U.C. Berkeley lawsuit
september; Using Marice J Bach book Design of the Unix Operating System and Minix released the first (0.01) version of Linux kernel (at the age of 22).
the first "official" version of Linux, which was version
0.02. At that point, Linux was able to run bash (the GNU Bourne Again
Shell) and GCC (the GNU C compiler), but not much else.
January; More or less stable version 0.12 released. License was changed to GPL. Due to stability this version was soon renamed to 0.9
March; Linux v .95 was released.
June; 386BSD 0.1 was released. A CD-ROM version of 386BSD has been announced in Dr. Dobb's Journal. All of the distributions and compilation files would fit onto 180Meg of hard drive.
Yggdrasil released the first CD-ROM distribution. "Linux wave"
December; 386BSD 1.0 was released on CD ROM
0.99pl15 aka v.1.0 was released via Internet. WEB revolution started
with Linux as one of the major beneficiaries. At least five CD Rom
distributors already exist selling ~50,000 CD ROM a month. In October
Caldera was founded by Bryan Sparks as a start-up venture funded by
Ray Noorda, former CEO of Novell. Still very weak networking support
limited its role as a workstation.
May; A very successful FreeBSD 1.1 was released.
FreeBSD 2.0 was released.
Hat merged with ACC -- Robert Yong of ACC (former founder of Linux
Journal) became a CEO.
Linus' first daughter was born. Minor disruptions of kernel development.
FreeBSD 2.1.5 released
December Linux 2.0 was released
meets Microsoft: end of the Finland period and of the academic career
(1988-1997 -- he spent 10 years as a student and researcher at the
University of Helsinki, coordinating development of the kernel since
1992). Now he decided to become rich and moved to the Bay Area (Santa
Clara) to work for Transmeta (Microsoft's Paul Allen is one of major
Honors and awards
1997 Linus Torvalds Receives 1997 Nokia Foundation Award
1997 Linus Torvalds receives Lifetime Achievement Award at Uniforum
|Updated on November 19, 2007||For suggestions please mail the editors|
Footnotes & References