Debian Community celebrates its 19th birthday

August 16th, 2012

The Debian community is pleased to celebrate its 19th birthday since Ian Murdock's original founding announcement. Quoting from the official project history: The Debian Project was officially founded by Ian Murdock on August 16th, 1993. At that time, the whole concept of a 'distribution' of Linux was new. Ian intended Debian to be a distribution which would be made openly, in the spirit of Linux and GNU.

A lot has happened to the project and its community in the past nineteen years. There have been eleven releases - most recently Debian 6.0 Squeeze in February 2011 - and a huge amount of free software packaged. The current unstable branch consists of more than 37,000 binary packages for the amd64 architecture alone - over 46 GB of Free/Libre Software! Since last year's birthday new steps to portability have been made; 11 official ports are now available, amongst which Debian/kFreeBSD deserves a special mention for successfully integrating a non-Linux kernel within the project.

Debian 7.0, codenamed Wheezy, was frozen in July 2012, following a time-based freeze policy, and currently the main activity throughout the project is squashing the remaining RC bugs. Again, Debian will strive to maintain its goals of technical excellence, accountability, and above all, freedom.

This has been made possible by the efforts of the strong community developed around Debian. Besides more than 1,000 Debian Developers and Maintainers from all over the globe, there are in excess of 12,000 registered accounts for the Alioth collaboration platform, and that doesn't even include all those people contributing with translations or bug reports (and sometimes patches for them) and all those users helping others via our mailing lists, forums and IRC channels.

As a project, we would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our users and contributors, and of course our upstream developers. All of them are helping to make Debian a great experience and a great project!

The Debian Project continues to welcome contributions in all forms, from everyone, encouraging people to download, use, modify and distribute its source code hoping that it will prove useful.

Contact Information

For further information, please visit the Debian web pages at or send mail to <>.