Introduction to Red Hat Linux and the General Public License
Benefits of a packaged Distribution
If Linux is available free on the Internet, why does Red Hat's packaged CD-ROM distribution of Linux sell at all? The primary reason is convenience. There are a number of benefits to the Red Hat packaged distribution.
One benefit is that a packaged distribution means each component can be easily upgraded. Another is that the user does not need to make decisions about which components to download, a process that is time consuming and requires intimate knowledge of the hardware environment into which Linux is to be introduced.
Red Hat Linux, assembled by the company Red Hat, was a popular Linux based operating system until its discontinuation in 2004.
Red Hat Linux 1.0 was released on November 3, 1994. It was originally called "Red Hat Commercial Linux" and was the first Linux distribution to use the RPM Package Manager as its packaging format.
Since 2003, Red Hat has discontinued the Red Hat Linux line in favor of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) for enterprise environments.
Fedora, developed by the community-supported Fedora Project and sponsored by Red Hat, is the free version best suited for home use. Red Hat Linux 9, the final release, hit its official end-of-life on 2004-04-30, although updates were published for it through 2006 by the Fedora Legacy project until that shut down in early 2007.