Fedora is a general purpose operating system built with the Linux kernel, and developed by the community-supported Fedora Project. It is sponsored by RedHat, and used to test new features for future use.
Fedora is an RPM-based, general purpose operating system built on top of the Linux kernel, developed by the community-supported Fedora Project and sponsored by Red Hat. The Fedora Project's mission is to lead the advancement of free and open source software and content as a collaborative community.
One of Fedora's main objectives is not only to contain software distributed under a free and open source license, but also to be on the leading edge of such technologies. Fedora developers prefer to make upstream changes instead of applying fixes specifically for Fedora?this ensures that their updates are available to all GNU/Linux distributions.
Fedora has a comparatively short life cycle: version X is maintained until one month after version X+2 is released. With 6 months between releases, the maintenance period is about 13 months for each version.
According to DistroWatch, Fedora is the second most popular Linux-based operating system as of June 2010, behind Ubuntu.
The Fedora Project was created in late 2003, when Red Hat Linux was discontinued. Red Hat Enterprise Linux was to be Red Hat's only officially supported Linux distribution, while Fedora was to be a community distribution. Red Hat Enterprise Linux branches its releases from versions of Fedora.
The name of Fedora derives from Fedora Linux, a volunteer project that provided extra software for the Red Hat Linux distribution, and from the characteristic fedora used in Red Hat's "Shadowman" logo. Fedora Linux was begun in 2002 by Warren Togami as an undergraduate project, intended to provide a single repository for well-tested third-party software packages so that non-Red Hat software would be easier to find, develop, and use. The key difference between the approaches of Fedora Linux and Red Hat Linux was that Fedora's repository development would be collaborative with the global volunteer community.
Fedora Linux was eventually absorbed into the Fedora Project, carrying with it this collaborative approach. Fedora is a trademark of Red Hat. Although this had previously been disputed by the creators of the unrelated Fedora repository management software, the issue has now been resolved.