Gentoo is a source-based, highly configurable GNU/Linux or FreeBSD operating system. Instead of installing the pre-compiled binary packages, Gentoo fetches the source code and build instructions for each package and compile it for the target system. This helps the Gentoo to optimize the packages for each system.

Portage is the spline of Gentoo. It is responsible for taking the build instruction, optimizing it for the target, compiling and installing it on the target system. With the help of Portage, Gentoo can serve as an ideal secure server, development workstation, professional desktop, gaming system, embedded solution, or something else.

Gentoo is sometimes referred to a meta-distribution, considering the way in which it distributes the packages.

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Base distributions
  • Independent
Desktop Envrionments
Distributions based on Gentoo Linux