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SUSE Linux distributions

suse linux distributions comparison, suse linux distributions for laptops
SUSE Linux /ˈsuːsə/1 or /ˈsuːzə/;2 German: ˈzuːzə is a computer operating system It is built on top of the open source Linux kernel and is distributed with system and application software from other open source projects SUSE Linux is of German origin, basically an acronym of “Software und System-Entwicklung” software and systems development, and was mainly developed in Europe The first version appeared in early 1994, making SUSE one of the oldest existing commercial distributions It is known for its YaST configuration tool

Novell bought the SUSE then "SuSE" brands and trademarks in 2003 Novell, one of the founding members of the Open Invention Network, decided to make the community an important part of their development process by opening widely the distribution development to outside contributors in 2005, creating the openSUSE distribution and the openSUSE Project Novell employed more than 500 developers working on SUSE in 20043 On 27 April 2011, Novell and SUSE were acquired by The Attachmate Group,4 which made SUSE an independent business unit Later, in October 2014, the entire Attachmate Group, including SUSE, was acquired by the British firm Micro Focus International5 SUSE continues to operate as an independent business unit6


  • 1 History
    • 11 The developer
      • 111 Origins
      • 112 Expansion
    • 12 Novell
      • 121 The openSUSE Project
      • 122 Microsoft agreement
    • 13 The Attachmate Group takeover
    • 14 Micro Focus merger
    • 15 Versions
      • 151 SUSE distributions
      • 152 openSUSE distributions
      • 153 SUSE Linux Enterprise
  • 2 SUSE family products
    • 21 openSUSE vs SUSE Linux Enterprise
    • 22 SUSE Linux Enterprise Server vs Desktop
  • 3 openSUSE Linux
  • 4 SUSE Linux Enterprise
  • 5 SUSE Studio
  • 6 See also
  • 7 Notes
  • 8 References
  • 9 External links


The developeredit

Gesellschaft für Software und System Entwicklung mbH Lit Company for Software and System Development was founded on 2 September 1992 in Nuremberg, Germany, by Roland Dyroff, Thomas Fehr, Burchard Steinbild, and Hubert Mantel Three of the founders were still mathematics students at a university; Fehr had already graduated and was working as a software engineer

The original idea was that the company would develop software and function as an advisory UNIX group According to Mantel, the group decided to distribute Linux, offering support

Their name at founding was "SuSE" and it was chosen as a German acronym for "Software und System-Entwicklung", meaning "Software and systems development" The full name has never been used, however, and the company was known as "SuSE", which was shortened to "SuSE" in October 1998 and more recently, to "SUSE"citation needed

SUSE Geeko official plush toy

The official logo and current mascot of the distribution is a veiled chameleon officially named, "Geeko" portmanteau of "Gecko" and "geek", following a competition As with the company's name, the "Geeko" logo design has evolved over time to reflect the name changes


SuSE Linux 42 and its 3 CDs 1996

The company started as a service provider, which among other things regularly released software packages that included Softlanding Linux System SLS, now defunct and Slackware Also, they printed UNIX/Linux manuals and they offered technical assistance These third party products SUSE initially used had those characteristics and were managed by SUSE in different fashions:

  • In mid-1992, Peter MacDonald created the comprehensive Linux distribution known as SLS, which offered elements such as X and TCP/IPcitation needed This was distributed to people who wanted to get Linux via floppy disks6
  • In 1993, Patrick Volkerding cleaned up the SLS Linux distribution, releasing a newer version as Slackware
  • In 1994, in support with Patrick Volkerding, Slackware scripts were translated into German, which was marked as the first release of SuSE Linux 10 distribution It was shipped first on floppies, and then on CDs6

For building its very own distribution of Linux, SuSE used the jurix distribution now defunct as starting point This was created by Florian La Roche, who joined the SuSE team He began to develop YaST, the installer and configuration tool that would become the central point of the distribution78

In 1996, the first distribution under the name SuSE Linux was published as "SuSE Linux 42" The version number has caused much discussion: it should have been just a version 11, but it was the beginning of a new distribution Using the number 42 was an intentional reference to the answer to the "Big Question about Life, the Universe and Everything" of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy science fiction novels by the English writer Douglas Adams YaST's first version number, "042", was a similar reference


Over time, SuSE Linux incorporated many aspects of Red Hat Linux, such as its RPM Package Manager and its file structure

SuSE became the largest Linux distributor in Germany In 1997, SuSE, LLC was established under the direction of President and Managing Partner James Gray in Oakland, California, which enabled the company to develop Linux markets in the Americas and Asia While Red Hat was ubiquitous in the United States, SuSE Linux continued to grow in Germany as well as in Nordic countries such as Finland and Sweden In October 1998, the name was changed officially to, SuSE without dots Linus Torvalds, the creator of the Linux kernel, used it fairly often SuSE entered the UK in 1999

In 2001, the company was forced to reduce its staff significantly in order to survive


SUSE/Novell company building in Nürnberg

On 4 November 2003, Novell announced it would acquire SuSE Linux AG for $210 million9 The acquisition was finalized in January 200410

In a move to reach its business audience more effectively, SuSE introduced the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server in 2001, and a few months before Novell's purchase, changed the company name to "SUSE Linux" 11 "SUSE" is now a name, not an acronym

According to J Philips, Novell's corporate technology strategist for the Asia Pacific region, Novell would not "in the medium term" alter the way in which SUSE was developed12 At Novell's annual BrainShare conference in 2004, for the first time, all of their computers were run with SUSE Linux and it was announced that the proprietary SUSE administration program YaST2 would be released under the GPL license13

The openSUSE Projectedit

On 4 August 2005, Novell announced that the SUSE Professional series would become more open, with the launch of the openSUSE Project community The software always had been open source, but openSUSE opened the development process, allowing developers and users to test and develop it Previously, all development work had been accomplished in-house by SUSE Version 100 was the first version that offered public beta testing

SUSE Linux 100 included both open source and proprietary applications and retail boxed-set editions As part of the change, YaST Online Update server access became free for all SUSE Linux users, and also for the first time, the GNOME desktop was upgraded to equal status with the traditional KDE

Microsoft agreementedit

On 3 November 2006 renewed 25 July 2011, Novell signed an agreement with Microsoft covering improvement of SUSE's ability to interoperate with Microsoft Windows, cross-promotion/marketing of both products and patent cross-licensing The agreement is considered controversial by some in the Free Software community1415

The Attachmate Group takeoveredit

On 22 November 2010, Novell announced that it had agreed to acquisition by The Attachmate Group for $22 billion The Attachmate Group plans to operate Novell as two units with SUSE becoming a stand-alone business,16 and it anticipates no change to the relationship between the SUSE business and the openSUSE project as a result of this transaction17

The US Department of Justice announced that in order to proceed with the first phase of their acquisition of certain patents and patent applications from Novell Inc, CPTN Holdings LLC and its owners would have to alter their original agreements to address the department's antitrust concerns The department said that, as originally proposed, the deal would jeopardize the ability of open source software, such as Linux, to continue to innovate and compete in the development and distribution of server, desktop, and mobile operating systems as well as middleware and virtualization products

Stipulations regarding the licensing the patents were:

  • All of the Novell patents will be acquired subject to the GNU General Public License, Version 2, a widely adopted open-source license, and the Open Invention Network OIN License, a significant license for the Linux System;
  • CPTN does not have the right to limit which of the patents, if any, are available under the OIN license; and
  • Neither CPTN nor its owners will make any statement or take any action with the purpose of influencing or encouraging either Novell or Attachmate to modify which of the patents are available under the OIN license

The acquisition was completed on 27 April 20114 Subsequently, on 23 July 2011 The Attachmate Group launched a new website for the SUSE business

Micro Focus mergeredit

On 20 November 2014, the Attachmate Group merged with Micro Focus to form the Micro Focus Group SUSE is operated as a separate business unit with a dedicated product portfolio18


SUSE provides a thirteen-year product life cycle for SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 & 12 For detailed EOL, EOS and EOXS End-of-eXtended-Support information see https://wwwsusecom/support/policyhtml

SUSE distributionsedit

Project Version Date of issue End of General Support Linux kernel version
SuSE Linux


3/94 1994-03-29   10
7/94 1994-07   109
11/94 1994-11   1162
4/95 1995-04   129
8/95 1995-08   1112
11/95 1995-11   1213
SuSE Linux


42 1996-05   200
43 1996-09   2018
44 1997-05   202325
441     2028
50 1997-07   2030
51 1997-10   2032
52 1998-03-23 2000 2033
53 1998-09-10 2000 2035
SuSE Linux 60 1998-12-21 2000 2036
61 1999-04-07 2001 226
62 1999-08-12 2001 2210
63 1999-11-25 2001-12-1019 2213
64 2000-03-09 2002-06-1720 2214
70 2000-09-27 2002-11-0421 2216
71 2001-04-21 2003-05-1622 2218 / 240
72 2001-06-15 2003-10-0123 2219 / 244
73 2001-10-13 2003-12-1524 249
80 2002-04-22 2004-06-3025 2418
81 2002-09-30 2005-01-3126 2419
82 2003-04-07 2005-07-1427 2420
SUSE Linux Enterprise 90 2003-10-15 2005-12-1528 2421 / 261
91 2004-04-23 2006-06-3029 264
92 2004-10-25 2006-10-3130 268
93 2005-04-16 2007-04-3031 2611
100 2006-07-17 2007-12-31 2616
101 2007-06-18 2008-11-30 261646
102 2008-05-19 2010-04-11 261660
103 2009-10-12 2011-10-11 261660
104 2011-04-12 2013-07-31 261660
110 2009-03-24 2010-12-31 2627
111 2010-06-02 2012-08-31 2632
112 2012-02-29 2014-01-31 3013
113 2013-07-01 2016-01-3132 3076
114 2015-10-13 2019-03-31 30101
120 2014-10-10 2016-06-30 312
121 2015-12-22 2017-05-31 312
122 2016-11-08 TBD 44
Project Version Date of issue End of General Support Linux kernel version
  Unsupported distribution

openSUSE distributionsedit

Name Version Codename Release date33 End of life Kernel version
Regular34 Evergreen35
SUSE Linux36 Old version, no longer supported: 100 Prague 2005-10-06 2007-11-30 N/A 2613
Old version, no longer supported: 101 Agama Lizard 2006-05-11 2008-05-31 N/A 2616
openSUSE Old version, no longer supported: 102 Basilisk Lizard 2006-12-07 2008-11-30 N/A 2618
Old version, no longer supported: 103 N/A 2007-10-04 2009-10-31 N/A 2622
Old version, no longer supported: 110 N/A 2008-06-19 2010-06-26 N/A 2625
Old version, no longer supported: 111 N/A 2008-12-18 2011-01-14 2012-04 2627
Old version, no longer supported: 112 Emerald 2009-11-12 2011-05-12 2013-11 2631
Old version, no longer supported: 11337 Teal 2010-07-15 2012-01-16 N/A 2634
Old version, no longer supported: 11438 Celadon 2011-03-10 2012-11-05 2015-07 2637
Old version, no longer supported: 12139 Asparagus 2011-11-16 2013-05-15 N/A 310
Old version, no longer supported: 12240 Mantis 2012-09-05 2014-01-15 N/A 346
Old version, no longer supported: 12341 Dartmouth 2013-03-13 2015-01-01 N/A 3710
Old version, no longer supported: 13142 Bottle 2013-11-19 2016-01 2016-1143 3116
Older version, yet still supported: 13242 Harlequin 2014-11-04 2017-01-16 N/A 3166
openSUSE Leap Older version, yet still supported: 42144 Malachite 2015-11-04 Q2 2017 N/A 41
Current stable version: 42245 N/A 2016-11-16 Q2 2018 N/A 44
Tumbleweed 46 Latest preview version of a future release: rolling N/A rolling N/A N/A 490
Legend: Old version Older version, still supported Latest version Latest preview version Future release

SUSE Linux Enterpriseedit

Main article: SUSE Linux Enterprise Server § Version history

SUSE family productsedit

SUSE Linux is available under two brands, openSUSE and SUSE Linux Enterprise openSUSE is a free, community distribution driven by the openSUSE Project It includes some of the latest "bleeding edge" Linux technologies and is designed for home users and enthusiasts SUSE Linux Enterprise is Suse's tested and certified open-source solution for major enterprises

openSUSE vs SUSE Linux Enterpriseedit

openSUSE is a freely available, community project that releases versions comparatively, on a frequent basis and generally, uses the latest versions of the various open source projects that it includes

SUSE Linux Enterprise is SUSE's commercial edition, which SUSE releases much less frequently, enabling it to offer support more effectively for enterprise and production deployments It is certified for a wide variety of enterprise applications and offers a number of special enterprise features including, High Availability and Point of Sale extensions SUSE historically uses a heavily-tested subset of packages from openSUSE Linux as the basis for SUSE Linux Enterprise

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server vs Desktopedit

SUSE offers SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop Each focuses on packages that fit its specific purpose For example, SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop does not include the Apache Web Server, and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server does not include Xgl/Compiz

In contrast, openSUSE does not have separate distributions for server, desktop, and tablets Rather, its repositories contain the needed software, and use installation patterns to accomplish the same

openSUSE Linuxedit

Main articles: openSUSE and OpenSUSE Project

openSUSE is driven by the openSUSE Project community and sponsored by SUSE, to develop and maintain SUSE Linux components It is the equivalent of the historic "SuSE Linux Professional" After their acquisition of SUSE Linux, Novell now SUSE has decided to make the community central to their development process4748

It has a theoretical development cycle of 8 months and a lifetime duration of the critical updates of 18 months from the date of release It is fully and freely available for immediate download

openSUSE was the sixth most popular Linux distribution for 2013 and the fourth most popular for 2014, according to DistroWatch4950

SUSE Linux Enterpriseedit

Main articles: SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop

SUSE develops multiple products for its "enterprise" business line These business products target corporate environments, with a higher life cycle 10 years, extendable to 13, a longer development cycle 6 to 18 months, a guarantee of stability at the potential expense of development speed, technical support, and certification by independent hardware and software vendors SUSE Linux Enterprise products are only available for sale updates fees

SUSE Linux Enterprise has fewer packages than the openSUSE distribution Most of the differences are desktop applications that are more suited to consumers than to business The enterprise products are:

  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server SLES is a server-oriented operating system targeted at corporate environments
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Real Time is a modified version of SLES supporting low-latency operations where the time factor is critical
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop is a desktop-oriented operating system targeted at corporate environments
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Thin Client SLETC is a modified version of SLED targeted at thin client terminals

When installed using a Linux kernel, Novell Open Enterprise Server OES uses SUSE Linux Enterprise Server as a platform This product is also known as OES-Linux

SUSE Linux Enterprise was included with VMware's vSphere licensing, up until June 25, 2014 for 'free', as noted on SUSE Partners website

SUSE Studioedit

Main article: SUSE Studio

SUSE's SUSE Studio product is a web interface built with Ruby on Rails to openSUSE's KIWI and the Open Build Service tools It allows users to put together a custom Linux distribution graphically and to generate output including a large variety of Virtual Machine and Disk Images

See alsoedit

  • Linux on z Systems
  • List of Linux distributions
  • Comparison of Linux distributions
  • SUSE Studio
  • Novell UnixWare
  • Novell Corsair
  • Novell Exposé
  • Caldera OpenLinux and Caldera Network Desktop


  1. ^ SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 Demo Archived November 8, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Maria Saavedra Executive Creative Director, Scott Worley Director of Video Production SUSE - Rosetta Stone Marketing Video Hewlett-Packard  |access-date= requires |url= help behancenet, YouTube
  3. ^ Arthur Griffith, CompTIA Linux+ Certification Virtual Training Company, 2004
  4. ^ a b "Novell Completes Merger with Attachmate and Patent Sale to CPTN Holdings LLC" novellcom Retrieved 28 April 2011 
  5. ^ "Micro Focus to Buy Attachmate in $12 Billion Share Deal" Bloomberg LP 15 September 2014 Retrieved 15 September 2014 
  6. ^ a b c "View SUSE Through the Years" SUSE Retrieved 10 February 2015 
  7. ^ jurix Readme file
  8. ^ History of Jurix
  9. ^ "Novell to acquire SuSE Linux" CNET news Retrieved 2009-04-26 
  10. ^ Kennedy, D 2003 Novell's Linux buy opens road to top Retrieved December 20, 2003
  11. ^ "SuSE Rebrands Ahead of 90 Launch" internetnewscom Retrieved 2008-03-03 
  12. ^ Ramesh, R 2004 Novell: SuSE stays the same, for now Retrieved 14 January 2004
  13. ^ The previous YaST license allowed modification and redistribution, but not sale of the code
  14. ^ "Microsoft, Novell Extend Controversial Partnership" Webmonkey 2008-08-20 Retrieved 2009-11-23 
  15. ^ "Microsoft cannot declare itself exempt from the requirements of GPLv3" Free Software Foundation 2007-08-28 
  16. ^ Novell Agrees to be Acquired by Attachmate Corporation, Novell, 22 November 2010, retrieved 2010-11-22 
  17. ^ Attachmate Corporation Statement on openSUSE project, Attachmate Corporation, 22 November 2010, retrieved 2010-11-23 
  18. ^ "SUSE is now part of Micro Focus | SUSE" wwwsusecom Retrieved 2016-05-01 
  19. ^ SuSE: Version 63 end-of-life announcement - The Community's Center for Security
  20. ^ SuSE Support fuer SuSE Linux 64 wird eingestellt
  21. ^ suse-security Supported Distributions
  22. ^ Re Discontinued 7/72/73 - msg#00105 - linuxsusesecurity
  23. ^ Linux Today - End of Life for SuSE Linux 72, Mandrake Linux 82
  24. ^ Discontinued SuSE Linux Distributions LWNnet
  25. ^ End of support for SUSE 80 LWNnet
  26. ^ Discontinued SUSE Linux Distributions: 81
  27. ^ Discontinued SUSE Linux Distribution: 82
  28. ^ SuSE Security announcements: suse-security-announce Discontinued SUSE Linux Distribution: 90
  29. ^ Discontinued SUSE Linux Distribution: 91
  30. ^ Discontinued SUSE Linux Distribution: 92
  31. ^ SUSE Linux 93 security support discontinued soon
  32. ^ "Release Notes for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 4 SP4" wwwsusecom Retrieved 2015-11-27 
  33. ^ "openSUSE Roadmap" 
  34. ^ "openSUSE Lifetime" 
  35. ^ "openSUSE Evergreen" 
  36. ^ but done by openSUSE project
  37. ^ Yunashko, Bryen 15 July 2010 "openSUSE 113 is here!" opensuse-announce mailing list Retrieved 15 July 2010 
  38. ^ "Portal 114: openSUSE 114 was released on Thursday the 10th of March 2011" 
  39. ^ "Portal 121: openSUSE 121 has been released on Wednesday, the 16th of November 2011" 
  40. ^ "Portal 122: openSUSE 122 has been released on Wednesday September 5th 2012" 
  41. ^ "Portal 123: openSUSE 123 has been released on Wednesday, March 13, 2013" 
  42. ^ a b "Supported Regular distributions" 
  43. ^ "Evergreen EOL" 
  44. ^ "Release Notes openSUSE 421" 
  45. ^ "Optimal Release for Linux Professionals Arrives with openSUSE Leap 422" November 16, 2016 
  46. ^ "Tumbleweed" 
  47. ^ Toulas, Bill 2012-01-23 "Interview with Jos Poortvliet from SUSE" osarenanet Archived from the original on 2012-05-09 Retrieved 2016-02-06 
  48. ^ "openSUSE:Factory development model - openSUSE" Enopensuseorg Retrieved 2012-10-30 
  49. ^ "DistroWatch home page" DistroWatch 2014-01-07 Retrieved 2014-01-07 
  50. ^ "DistroWatch home page" DistroWatch 2015-01-21 Retrieved 2015-01-21 


  • Naba Barkakati SUSE Linux 10 For Dummies p 356 ISBN 978-0-471-75493-0 
  • Keir Thomas Beginning SUSE Linux: From Novice to Professional p 544 ISBN 978-1-59059-458-2 

External linksedit

  • SUSE
  • openSUSEorg
  • Planet SUSE
  • suse at DistroWatch
  • novell at DistroWatch

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