Mandriva Linux was launched in 1998 under the name of Mandrake Linux, with the goal of making Linux easier to use for everyone. At that time, Linux was already well-known as a powerful and stable operating system that demanded strong technical knowledge and extensive use of the command line; MandrakeSoft saw this as an opportunity to integrate the best graphical desktop environments and contribute its own graphical configuration utilities to quickly become famous for setting the standard in Linux ease of use. In February 2005, MandrakeSoft merged with Brazil's Conectiva to form Mandriva S.A., with headquarters in Paris, France. The company's flagship product, Mandriva Linux, offers all the power and stability of Linux to both individuals and professional users in an easy-to-use and pleasant environment.
"Free software" (or "Open Source Software") refers to the users' freedom to use, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software.
These "software rights" have generated a large and dynamic development community in the last decades. Linux is one of the most successful examples of Free and Open Source software development projects.
Mandriva Linux is based on the Cooker development project sponsored by Mandriva. Hundreds of passionate free software developers work openly on the core of the distribution. This open, community-driven development system has been in place since 1998, making it one of the longest-standing open source development communities around. The involvement of the Mandriva development community helps us to make Mandriva Linux one of the largest, most up-to-date, integrated, internationalized and standardized distributions available.
To thank the many free software contributors and to promote the use of Free Software, Mandriva is proud to build a special Free Software edition. This edition is made for the discerning users who value software freedom and and don't want to run proprietary software on their machine. Named Mandriva Linux Free, this build does not contain any non-free software packages like proprietary drivers, closed-source applications or plugins. It is available on the network of public Mandriva mirrors as part of the Mandriva Linux release.
To download Mandriva Linux Free, simply go the main download page and choose the Free (Software!) edition.
Please note: Free software is really about Freedom, and has nothing to do with free-of-charge software. The fact that Mandriva One and Mandriva Free are downloadable for free is a totally different matter. We hope you appreciate the difference and will enjoy both of our GNU/Linux based editions of Mandriva Linux.