Frequently asked questions

Our page about GNU/Linux covers the essential information. We hope this FAQ list can help if you are more curious.

Общи въпроси

Каква е разликата между «ГНУ/Линукс» и «Линукс»?

Вие постоянно споменавате ту едното, ту другото. Какво означава всичко това?

Първоначално, Линукс се отнася за основния компонент (наречен ядро) на операционната система ГНУ. Това, което потребителите използват днес, за да бъдем точни са «дистрибуции на системата ГНУ/Линукс».

На практика, думата «Линукс» се използва (изненадващо) много повече, и днес много хора наричат цялата система просто «Линукс». Това предизвиква много спорове.

Calling the system GNU/Linux is much more meaningful, technically (end-users use a lot of "GNU" and a little of "Linux") but also philosophically: the strength and momentum of the Free Software movement started with and are still carried by the GNU project.

Наричайки системата Линукс, практично настроените хора апелират тези компютърни потребители, които освен Windows, нищо друго не са и чували.

To avoid confusion, we use "GNU/Linux" to refer to operating system distributions that include GNU software and the Linux kernel. When we use "Linux" without the GNU part, we refer to the kernel.

And what has that software to do with a GNU?

When Richard Stallman started to design GNU, the main system in use was Unix, which is proprietary. Because GNU is similar in function to (and compatible with) Unix, but is free software, he coined the term GNU which stands for GNU's Not Unix. It's a recursive acronym. If you enjoy that kind of humour, check out what GNU Hurd means.

Линукс регистрирана търговска марка ли е?

Yes. You cannot sell any random software under the name of Linux®. The trademark is held by the Linux Mark Institute.

Има ли други свободни операционни системи, освен ГНУ/Линукс?

Не. От всички свободни операционна системи ГНУ/Линукс се използва най-широко, но въпреки това съществуват и редица други системи.

These include the UNIX derivatives FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, the BeOS clone Haiku OS, the Windows NT clone ReactOS, the DOS clone FreeDOS, and Syllable, just to name a few.

Is macOS a distribution of GNU/Linux?

No. There are a few free software components in macOS, and it is technically similar to GNU/Linux systems. But overall, it is proprietary software: all the issues about Windows apply to it as well.

Относно свободния софтуер

«Отворен код» и «свободен софтуер» едно и също нещо ли са?

Yes and no. Technically, the great majority of open source programs are free software and vice-versa.

От гледна точка на философията, нещата са доста по-различни. Терминът «отворен код» е измислен за популяризиране на «свободен софтуер», неговите поддръжници виждат софтуера с отворен код, като по-добър начин за създаване на софтуер.

Supporters of the "free software" term value the freedom, not merely the way software is made, and thus argue that the term "open source" misses the point.

Как използвате термина — зависи от вашата позиция.

Why are some GNU/Linux distributions sold, not given away?

Some websites actually sell distributions of GNU/Linux. So, why do you write it is "free as speech and available at no charge"?

The concept of free software, refers to freedom, not price. You have the freedom to copy, study, modify, and give free software away.

Повечето компании, разработващи свободен софтуер получават печалба от продажбата на поддръжка за своят софтуера, а не от самия софтуер. Това понякога се прави чрез продажба на всичко това, като един пакет: клиентът купува диск, книга и договор за поддръжка наведнъж. Въпреки това, програмата все още е свободна.

Още: Вредни съвети за свободния софтуер | Брошура на FLOSS концепция.

Why are some GNU/Linux distributions not fully free?

Some GNU/Linux distributions are available at no charge, but include restrictive software. Why is it so?

Обикновено има три вида политики по отношение на включването на несвободен софтуер:

  • Някои ГНУ/Линукс дистрибуции допускат несвободен софтуер, за да подсигурят функционалността на хардуера. This happens because some hardware manufacturers such as NVidia do not care about their customers' freedoms, and only release restricting firmware and drivers (some of them don't even release anything, like Broadcom). These are available at no cost (they are freeware) but under restrictive licenses. Distributions such as Ubuntu thus include such components to improve hardware compatibility.

  • Some GNU/Linux distributors do not compromise on the freedom of software, and make sure their distribution are entirely free. Such is the case of Trisquel, which is a Ubuntu derivative with all restricting components removed.

  • Някои ГНУ/Линукс дистрибуции безразборно сливат свободния и рестриктивен софтуер. Такива дистрибуции не искат потребителите да се замислят за свободата си, а по-скоро рекламират само техническите възможности на продукта си. Използването на такива дистрибуции не е нищо по-добро от използването на Windows. Ние ценим свободата си и ви препоръчваме да избирате внимателно!

Is macOS also a free operating system?

Do all the reasons for avoiding Windows apply to macOS?

Обикновено Мак потребителите често си мислят, че те не са свързани с ограниченията, свързани с Windows. За нещастие това не е така.

macOS does have some low-level components which are free software; and Apple puts less energy into customer lock-in (with some notable efforts such as BootCamp).

However, the end-user is still fundamentally restricted — because of the proprietary license, he/she cannot use macOS for all purposes, nor copy, study, modify, or redistribute it.

Happily, because these freedoms matter a lot, it's possible to run popular GNU/Linux distributions (such as Ubuntu) on Mac computers.

Aren't GNU/Linux users the ones who make illegal downloads?

Isn't GNU/Linux about cracking, "piracy" and illegal download websites?

No. Wherever you read or heard this, you should update your views. GNU/Linux is completely distinct from such things. Whether you want to do them, or whether you prefer intelligent, legal downloads, GNU/Linux will work just as well as Windows. Unfortunately you can't identify gangsters by the make of their cars; the same thing goes for their operating system.

Създателите на ГНУ/Линукс не харесват идеята, че всички компютри в света ще бъдат контролирани от патентованите продукти на една единствена компания. Разбира се, в това няма нищо лошо!

Прочетете повече в статията: Вредни съвети за свободния софтуер.

Is GNU/Linux a form of communism?

"Everything has to be free" and "No one owns anything" sounds somewhat frightening. Are GNU/Linux and its GPL License something for anarchists or communists?

GNU/Linux has nothing to do with a political system and anyone — regardless of their political views — can use it. We have this explained simply in our article Вредни съвети за свободния софтуер.

Installing GNU/Linux

Does GNU/Linux come pre-installed on computers?

Yes it does. LinuxPreloaded.com has built a website specially for that purpose, listing vendors that sell GNU/Linux desktops and laptops.

Имайте предвид, че не е задължително да си купите нов компютър, за да използвате ГНУ/Линукс!

Мога ли да получа ГНУ/Линукс на собствения ми език?

Да. Всички основни дистрибуции, като тези, които ние препоръчваме, са достъпни на всички основни езици и поддържат различни клавиатурни подредби.

За разлика от Windows, всички поддържани езици вече са включени на всеки инсталационен диск, така че няма нужда да сваляте (или да плащате за!) цяла друга версия на продукта, само за да смените езика на компютъра си.

Is it legal to install GNU/Linux on my computer?

There is a shiny Windows sticker on it! Am I allowed to erase Windows or use it together with GNU/Linux?

Yes. It is absolutely, completely legal, provided of course it's your computer!

Стикерът върху него е чист маркетинг, той няма правна стойност. Ние вярваме, че това е фундаментално право на всеки да избира, какъв софтуер да стартира на своя личен компютър.

In fact this right is threatened by the rise of things such as DRM and Trusted Computing. Read our article "Поддръжка за свободното общество" for more information.

Do I have to purchase a new computer to run GNU/Linux?

Not at all. It will run happily on your own computer.

The only thing you might be worried about is using very recent special hardware, such as graphics cards. Otherwise, almost all GNU/Linux distributions can run on normal PCs (often called "i386" or "x86" computers), 64-bit-processor computers and Apple Mac computers. Read how you can try or install GNU/Linux on your computer, be it instead of or together with Windows.

Using GNU/Linux

Will Microsoft Office run on GNU/Linux?

No. It is technically possible to adapt Microsoft Office to GNU/Linux, but Microsoft isn't keen on allowing Office users to choose their operating system. There are other issues with MS Office and openness — like Microsoft's fierce opposition to supporting the OpenDocument format.

However, a complete, free, reliable office suite exists: LibreOffice. Or you can choose its close cousin, Apache OpenOffice. They will both happily use all your existing office files in MS-Word, MS-Excel, and MS-PowerPoint format, and are really free (both as in freedom and as in price). And they run on Windows as well as on GNU/Linux.

LibreOffice.org   OpenOffice.org

Мога ли да пускам DVD дискове и MP3 файлове под ГНУ/Линукс?

The simple answer to this question would be "yes", however this is only half the truth.

Quite a few GNU/Linux distributions do not include MP3 playback software due to the patent situation of the MP3 format. These patent issues do not affect the user directly, so most distributions make it fairly easy to install MP3 support over the Internet after the installation, making it possible to legally play MP3 files, for non-commercial use.

DVDs, on the other hand, are a more difficult situation. Most, if not all, DVDs are encrypted using a system called "CSS". There is a widely supported free software, called libdvdcss, capable of decrypting DVD videos. However, circumventing the restriction on your DVDs is illegal in many parts of the world, including the USA and the European Union.

There is a legal solution to play your DVDs on GNU/Linux where libdvdcss is illegal. The Fluendo company has developed an (non-free) application for that purpose which can be purchased from their website.

Non-encrypted DVDs, which include most home-made DVDs, play perfectly well with only free software.

Мога ли да играя популярни 3D игри под ГНУ/Линукс?

Yes and no. Some games, for example the Quake series, Rust, Counter-Strike, Tomb Raider, Portal, Left 4 Dead, and many more have GNU/Linux versions. Since the release of the popular Steam platform to the GNU/Linux operating system, the number of GNU/Linux compatible games on Steam has been growing rapidly. Check out the Steam store where you can find a wealth of high quality, GNU/Linux compatible games.

Most popular games, alas, only work on Windows and occasionally on macOS. Some Windows games can be run on GNU/Linux with Wine or its non-free variant CrossOver, which involves some unpleasant effort for the user. For a list of games known to work on Wine, see their games database.

Още въпроси?

If you have a question that is not covered here, there are many communities to help you. Our "Още" section will help you find the right place to ask.

If you can think of a frequent question that we haven't answered yet, do let us know, or file an issue.