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1. Introduction

1.1 Purpose

The Linux User Group HOWTO is intended to serve as a guide to founding, maintaining, and growing a GNU/Linux user group.

GNU/Linux is a freely-distributable implementation of Unix for personal computers, servers, workstations, PDAs, and embedded systems. It was developed on the i386 and now supports a huge range of processors from tiny to colossal:

Note that some items listed were probably one-time forks, little or not at all maintained since creation. On some of the rarer architectures, NetBSD may be more practical. (Soon, the Debian GNU/NetBSD and Debian GNU/kFreeBSD ports should be solid enough to serve as a compromise option, furnishing GNU/Linux userspace code on the highly portable NetBSD kernel and the high performance / high stability FreeBSD kernel, respectively.)

If seriously interested in the subject of Linux ports, please see also Xose Vazquez Perez's Linux ports page and Jerome Pinot's Linux architectures list (static mirrors, as both pages vanished in 2005), if only because hardware support is more complex than just generic CPU functionality, encompassing support for myriad bus variations and other subtle hardware issues (especially for Linux PDA / embedded / microcontroller / router ports). The above list aims mostly to generally illustrate the breadth of Linux's reach.

1.2 Other sources of information

If you want to learn more, the Linux Documentation Project is a good place to start.

For general information about computer user groups, please see the Association of PC Users Groups.

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