Pick a Free OS

Operating systems

OS LicensePlatformDevelopement Status
AdaOSGPL/LGPL/GFDLi386Early stages
AROSAROS PUBLIC LICENSEx86, Amiga, m68Slow but Active.
AtheOSGPLx86This OS is being actively developed. Support Intel, AMD and other compatible processors.
BSDBSD -See OpenBSD/FreeBSD/NetBSD for development status.
CefarixGPLi386The Project is inactive
ChaosBSDx86Since chaos is fairly new, the hardware support is rather limited.Not much documentation.
CP/MFreeware68000, 8086No development seems to be happening here. Caldera currently holds the rights to this OS. They have released the original source code but not under the GPL. Source code is available for CP/M 2 and 3 for the PCW16.
DarwinApple Public SourcePowerPCQuite active. Apple is working hard here and is also giving back a lot of code to the open source community. Support for the Intel platform is also planned.
DCPUnknownx86Development was discontinued in the early 90s.
Debian GNU/HurdGNU GPLx86Actively developed. Debian GNU/Hurd is not officially released yet, and won't be for some time.
E.R.I.K.AGPLx86Not very active.
eCosGNU GPLARM, Hitachi H8300, Intel x86, MIPS, Matsushita AM3x, Motorola 68k, PowerPC, SuperH, SPARC and NEC V8xxVery active.
ELKSGNU GPL8086, 80286Not very active.
ERaMSGPLx86Not very active
EROSGNU GPLIntel 486 and higherCode is complete, not very active.
FiascoGPLx86Quite an active development project.
Free-VMSGNU GPLx86Development is slow.
FreeBSDBSD x86, DEC Alpha, IA-64, PC-98 and UltraSPARCIt works on a wide platform and it is under active development and support.
FreeBSDBSD x86, DEC Alpha, IA-64, PC-98 and UltraSPARCIt works on a wide platform and it is under active development and support.
FreeDOSGNU GPLIntelVery active. The site is up to date. Not as bad as most of the other free operating systems that seem to have sunk into oblivion. Still does not have multitasking, protected mode. Works under DosEmu.
FreedowsGNU GPLIntelThe project is almost dead. No development has happened recently.
LinuxGPLIntel, Alpha, SPARC, PowerPCVery active. Some big names are behind it so expect a lot from this OS.
MenuetGPLx86Not very Active
MinixBSDIntelMinix is upto V2.0 but the page was last updated in 1996.
MorphOSOpen SourceAmigaThe first release has been sent to some selected developers for evaluation on their hardware. There is a lot of expectation from this OS.
NetBSDBSDalpha, amiga, arc, arm26, arm32, atari, bebox, cobalt, hp300, hpcmips, i386, luna68k, mac68k, macppc, mipsco, mvme68k, news68k, newsmips, next68k, ofppc, pc532, pmax, prep, sgimips, sh3, sparc, sparc64, sun3, vax, x68kThis is definitely an active project. New work is being done all the time and all documentation and FAQs are current. Release schedules are quite slow though.
NetBSDBSDalpha, amiga, arc, arm26, arm32, atari, bebox, cobalt, hp300, hpcmips, i386, luna68k, mac68k, macppc, mipsco, mvme68k, news68k, newsmips, next68k, ofppc, pc532, pmax, prep, sgimips, sh3, sparc, sparc64, sun3, vax, x68kThis is definitely an active project. New work is being done all the time and all documentation and FAQs are current. Release schedules are quite slow though.
OberonGeneral ETH Oberon Sx86, AlphaThe project is very active.
OpenBEOSaq.php?list=all&progx86This is the unofficial release ofter the original BEOS company got acquired. This is actively developed by fan followers.
OpenBSDBSDAlpha, Amiga, HP300, i386, mac68k, mvme68k, pmax, powerpc,SPARC, sun3,vaxActive development with developers all round the world. The project is always on the lookout for more resources and help so see if you can get in and help them out.
OpenBSDBSDAlpha, Amiga, HP300, i386, mac68k, mvme68k, pmax, powerpc,SPARC, sun3,vaxActive development with developers all round the world. The project is always on the lookout for more resources and help so see if you can get in and help them out.
Plan 9Plan 9Intel, Mips, DEC Alpha, and Power PCThis OS was recently released to the open source community but it seems to have been a bit too late. There has not been much interest in this promising OS.
PowerOSOpen SourcePowerPCPowerOS is currently under development. Not very active
QNXQNX Open Communityx86This was originally a commercial project. Definitely very well supported and very actively developed.
ReactOSGNU CopyleftIntelActively developed.
RTEMSOpen SourceMotorola PowerPC, M683x0, M680x0, Coldfire; Intel ix86, i960; MIPS R46x SPARC; Hitachi SH; AMD 29K; HP PA-RISCVery active. Beta 4.5.0 was released on 23 May 2000. There is also a active development community behind this.
S.Ha.R.KGPLx86This project is very active.
SkyOSfreeware Version 5.0 is now available for distribution to beta testers. Users may download previous versions for free.
Solaris 8Solaris 8 BCLIntel, SparcThis is a very mature project. Actively developed and supported.
UnununiumBSDi386This is being actively developed.
V2_OSGNU GPLIntel i386Quite an active project and some good code has come out of it too.
VSTaCopyleftedi386, Amiga 68030Not very actively developed.
WinmacGPLIntelNo files have been released as yet.
xMachLGPLx86There is a small developer team here and they're actively looking for more coders.
xMachLGPLx86There is a small developer team here and they're actively looking for more coders.
YamitBSDEarly releases of the microkernel are available for download.
ZotOSx86Not very active