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Software Freedom Day

About Software Freedom Day

"Software Freedom Day (SFD) is a worldwide celebration of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). Our goal in this celebration is to educate the worldwide public about the benefits of using high quality FOSS in education, in government, at home, and in business -- in short, everywhere!"

Each year, SFD events are organized by volunteers in dozens of cities worldwide. These events each take on their own character, but typically involve some sort of address from the organizers, demos and presentations from community members, and installfests and hackathons. Each venue and organizer will have their own agenda and timeline, but there are specific things that Fedora is helping to support this year.


Helping introduce new users to Free/Open Source Software is a common activity at SFD each year. One of the "rights of passage" for many FOSS contributors is the installation of your first "distro." An installfest is where that happens, en masse, with local experts and mentors to help guide new users through the occasionally complicated install process.

Here are some pro-tips to help you run an installfest at your SFD location:

  1. Acquire Fedora Images
  2. Create Install Media
  3. Assist Users during installation
  4. Report on how your event went


Installfests require install media. In earlier times, this took the form of CDROMs or DVDs (even floppy disks once upon a time) that were shipped to local sites as part of an Ambassador kit. These days, most laptops don't even come with a CD/DVD drive, and the project has adapted with the times. There are now three editions of Fedora (Workstation, Server, and cloud) which come in a variety of formats, and can be found at:

Once you have your installation media, one popular way to "try before you buy" is by using the Fedora Live USB Creator. You can find instructions on this effective and cross-platform tool on the official web page.


Once you have created LiveUSB drives, users should be able to plug these drives into their laptops, desktops, and other USB-bootable devices, and try running Fedora. Rather than listing specific steps here, we should list a few points to keep in mind:


Before doing any destructive action to an existing system or machine, users should back up any data on their drives to an external drive or storage device.


Just because your machine runs Fedora, that doesn't mean everyone will have a plug-and-play experience. Unfortunately, not all device and component manufacturers work with the FOSS community to release drivers and specifications. Too often, it is the hard work of volunteers to be sure a particular piece of hardware is supported within Fedora, or other distros for that matter. The key sequence you have to punch in to get to the BIOS, the boot order of the devices, and/or any other options or configurations thereafter all must be reckoned on an individual basis. Before installing an image to a user's drive, you should be checking logs and testing settings to be sure that their hardware is supported. There is almost nothing worse than a fresh install without wireless or network access.


Was that experience fun? Did everything work perfectly? Were there any bugs? Good or bad, it is usually a good idea to try to document the process you went through. If you found a bug, or a component of your machine isn't supported, fear not! The only way we at the Fedora Project can fix a problem is if we find it. Your contribution at Software Freedom Day could be helping us identify places where the community needs help. Chances are, if you are having an issue or seeing a bug, then someone else has too! Even in 'failure' there can be progress and learning :) Take a screenshot. Take a snapshot. Fpaste a traceback. The more data you can gather, the better.


Even though our events can be far from each other physically, there is no reason to be far from the community virtually. During the event, you can find other SFD participants in #sfd on


After you've recorded your progress, good or bad, whichever way it went, there are places you can report back and tell your story, Fedora Magazine, or submit your bugs, like Bugzilla.


"Fedora Badges is a fun website built to recognize contributors to the Fedora Project, help new and existing Fedora contributors find different ways to get involved, and encourage the improvement of Fedora's infrastructure."

Not sure where to start? Then is a great place for you to match the things you are interested in with the activities that Fedora needs help with.

Parts of Fedora

There are 13 subprojects within Fedora that focus on specific elements of the community:

Ambassadors are the representatives of Fedora. Ambassadors ensure the public understand Fedora's principles and the work that Fedora is doing. Additionally Ambassadors are responsible for helping to grow the contributor base, and to act as a liaison between other FLOSS projects and the Fedora community.

The Design Team is the design group of the Fedora project. Our interests are not only in creating graphics for use by the Fedora community, but also in advocating the use of the creative tools that are a part of Fedora.

Team Leader

Máirín Duffy

The mission of Fedora's Documentation Project is to improve the overall experience of Fedora users and contributors by providing documentation. We explain how to use certain software and systems, provide written accounts of special events (like releases), and recommend settings for software and systems (in terms of security, performance, and other concerns). In pursuing this work, the Docs Project creates and uses only free and open-source software, content, tools, and processes, so our documentation is reusable, modifiable, and rebuildable by anyone, for free, forever.
Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (or EPEL) is a Fedora Special Interest Group that creates, maintains, and manages a high quality set of additional packages for Enterprise Linux, including, but not limited to, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), CentOS and Scientific Linux (SL), Oracle Linux (OL).

EPEL packages are usually based on their Fedora counterparts and will never conflict with or replace packages in the base Enterprise Linux distributions. EPEL uses much of the same infrastructure as Fedora, including buildsystem, bugzilla instance, updates manager, mirror manager and more.
The Infrastructure Team consists of dedicated volunteers and professionals managing the servers, building the tools and utilities, and creating new applications to make Fedora development a smoother process. We're located all over the globe and communicate primarily by IRC and e-mail.

The Fedora I18N project works on internationalization (i18n) to support the localization (l10n) of Fedora in many languages.

Translation of Fedora software and documentation are handled by the Fedora L10N project .

The goals of the Project are to:

  • Develop, package, and maintain applications like input methods for different languages
  • Improve applications and utilities to support and process different languages
  • Quality-assure that existing applications meet i18n standards
  • Support the infrastructure of the Fedora Localization Project
The goal of the Fedora Localization Project (FLP) is to bring everything around Fedora (the Software, Documentation, Websites and culture) closer to local communities (countries, languages and in general cultural groups). Usually this involves doing translations via PO files but is certainly not limited to that.

L10N is an abbreviation of the term "Localization" by means of a so called numeronym, a way of replacing the middle letters of a word (in case 'ocalizatio') by naming the number of letters between the first and last letter of that word (in case 10): Localization
The short version: The Fedora Marketing Team ensures that people in Fedora can consistently explain to everyone what Fedora is, why the project can help them, and how they can help the project.

Slightly longer version: The Fedora Marketing Team develops and executes marketing strategies to promote the usage and support of Fedora worldwide. Through the development of processes and content, this project aims to support the efforts of other Fedora projects to spread Fedora and to provide a central repository of ideas and information that can be used to deliver Fedora to new audiences. We work closely with the Fedora Ambassadors who spread the word about Fedora at events and allow the Fedora Project to interact directly with its existing and prospective users.
The Fedora Magazine is our new spot where you can read about Fedora events, Fedora board meeting notes, updates within the Fedora project and about Fedora itself.
Package Maintainers
Fedora Packages are maintained collectively by a community of both Red Hat members and volunteers.
Quality Assurance
Fedora QA is the project which covers all testing of the software that makes up Fedora. It's our goal to continually improve the quality of Fedora releases and updates.
The Fedora Websites initiative aims to improve Fedora's image and to create the best possible interface for users and contributors on the Internet.

Types of Badges

You can view all of the Fedora Badges that are available to be awarded by visiting the Badges Index. Badges listed here are grouped into a number of categories, as described below:

Badges in this category have to do with contributions to Documentation, Wikis, Art/Graphics/Wallpaper, and creation of new badges.
These badges typically deal with infrastructure, Updates (Bodhi), Builds (Koji), and Packages/Packaging.
Badges in this category often involve updates to your account in the Fedora Account System (FAS), posts syndicated to the Fedora Planet, awarded badges milestones, Team/SIG Memberships, IRC Meeting Participation, and Karma Cookies.
Badges in this category often relate to Testing Updates in Bodhi, running test suites, and voting/tagging packages in Fedora Tagger.
Badges in this category are awarded for attending, speaking at, organizing, volunteering, and socializing at Fedora and Upstream FOSS events.
Badges in this category are often "one-offs" that don't fall into other categories, or are awarded for extraordinary contributions or memberships.

It's Dangerous To Go Alone! Take This.

It all starts with the Fedora Account System (FAS). Just by updating FAS with your current information and status, you can earn a number of badges. The benefit of doing so, for you, goes way beyond just accumulating magical internet points. As a new contributor to FOSS, doing things like generating gpg and ssh keys help you contribute not only to Fedora, but establish your identity in the FOSS realm. You can use these keys to log into servers and machines, encrypt and protect your messages, and establish a web of trust with other contributors you work with. After you create a FAS account, and log into Fedora Badges, you will get your first badge and be off to the races.

Badge-a-thon Contest? How does that work?

How Long?

24 hours, from Noon ET (4pm UTC) Saturday September 19th to Noon ET (4pm UTC) on Sunday September 20th.

How do I participate?

Add yourself to the table below with your Badges profile link, and which Software Freedom Day event you are attending. So far we have confirmed events at Rochester Institute of Technology, Siena College, and Remote, Worldwide.

Fedora Badges Profile Location
decause Rochester, NY

What do I win?

Glory! Fame! Magical Internet Points!

Srsly tho, we'll likely put togehter some swag kits to mail to our winners, and make a blogpost on Fedora Magazine announcing the winners and recognizing your contributions to the Fedora Community :)


If you have a quick question, it is best to join #fedora-commops on and ask decause the Software Freedom Day contest organizer directly, or you can email