Gnome os is debian branch?

I couldn’t understand what exactly is gnome os?, feel a lack of details I assume is is a linux distro, based on debian ?
The website is not clarifying



GNOME OS is an operating system image, built from the ground up same way we built the Flatpak runtimes. Its meant to test the latest versions of the entirety of GNOME and its completely distro independent. Its not a general purpose distribution either and its not meant for daily use by anyone. You can find more detail about its goals in this blogpost.



To add more infos, it uses BuildStream with Freedesktop-sdk and Gnome-build-meta.

A good history of BuildStream is described on Tristan’s blog.


Then we should probably have an appropriate name to reflect that.

Gnome OS name is misleading.


The name has a long history, and it’s pretty accurate for what it is: an operating system for GNOME. Naming does not dictate scope.

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I guess that is applicable when a code name is used like 'SilverBlue' in Fedora SilverBlue, whereby users are made aware that it’s something different.

But, when a name as generic as 'OS' is used, it carries its history with it, and can have only meaning, the historical meaning of OS - meaning a OS for public use ( like MacOS, nixOS ).

Also, articles like the below just add to the confusion:


Ah you mean like IOS, Mbed OS, Java OS …?

An operating system or “the low-level software that supports a computer’s basic functions, such as scheduling tasks and controlling peripherals.” can have almost any function, you could even argue whatever blob is running on your pocket calculator is an OS

GNOME OS is an OS and is GNOME, doesn’t really matter if it’s intended for public consuption or not

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I absolutely don’t have any issues with the name, as I am more interested in the internals of what it does.

But, this question will keep coming again and again here and in public forums, from less informed users.

That’s what I was trying to point out.


Regarding the “long history” to which I alluded:

GNOME OS is for public consumption. If it wasn’t, it wouldn’t be on a public server.

What it is not, on the other hand:

  • a Linux distribution
  • a general purpose OS

In other words: if you decide to use it as a daily driver on a physical machine, to write your own dissertation or edit your family photos, we don’t guarantee that it won’t eat your data and brick your device.

Changing the name won’t help change the perception of this project because there’s no name that implies “you should only use this OS as a design and QA tool”. That’s what the documentation is for.

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Fedora has rawhide

Debian has experimental / SID / unstable

At least we can add an extra tag string to GNOME OS to indicate it is not for daily use. calls it NIghtly, which seems a lot more obvious to me than rawhide or SID (which are only indication for a stability level for people who learned the meaning in the Fedora/Debian contexts).

That page also prominently shows the following disclaimer:

This is pre-release software intended for testing and development. Bad things may happen if you use it in production.

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