Why Is the Linux Logo a Penguin? The Story Behind Tux

What’s the very first thing that pops into your thoughts while you consider Linux? If it’s a cherubic, rotund penguin, you are referring to Tux, the present age iconic model identifier of Linux.

However do you know, it was 5 years earlier than Linux obtained a penguin for a model ambassador? The story behind how the well-known mascot was born and the way the Linux penguin identify got here to be, makes for some fascinating trivia, particularly in the event you’re a fan of the open-source kernel and its lineage.


Written by Linus Torvalds in 1991, Linux was an open-source, component-driven kernel earlier than changing into a base for hundreds of derived distributions. The group of builders noticed promise in a freely-licensed Unix different and improved Linux by contributing to the undertaking.

The story dates again to a very memorable journey to Australia in ’93, whereby a fairy penguin bit Torvalds in a zoo. Recognized to most informal Linux customers merely because the Linux penguin, Tux was born in 1996, when developer Alan Cox shared a cartoon design he fabricated from a penguin picture that Torvalds discovered on-line.

Cox’s caricature targeted on the lovable penguin options after taking inspiration from the claymation function, Creature Comforts. Tux has retained its puppy-dog spherical eyes that immediately draw new customers’ curiosity and appreciation for cuteness.

The ample stomach instantly caught Torvalds consideration, who needed a model brand that may not intimidate patrons. The penguin was most well-liked over a collection of foxes, hawks, sharks, and eagles instructed by others on numerous brainstorming boards.

MAKEUSEOF VIDEO OF THE DAY

The ultimate model of Tux that we now know is predicated on a design by Larry Ewing. The creator had designed a digital portrait of the penguin utilizing the Linux staple, GIMP drawing software program, for a Linux brand design competitors.

Nonetheless, the ultimate choice went for Tux’s identify, coined by James Hughes. It was an abbreviation for Torvalds Unix.

Tux Via the Years


Linux logo

Linux is simply 4 years shy of 40 years of age, as of at present. Tux gave Linux an extensible engagement think about merchandising and model imagery, that even Microsoft’s Home windows brand and Apple’s Mac techniques lack.

For the higher a part of these a long time, Tux has been Linux’s face. Its open-source licensing allowed software program builders concentrating on Linux to include the iconography with out paying to borrow the artwork. Therefore, Tux matured right into a model mascot past a mere brand.

The penguin brand has impressed a litany of variations over time whereas that includes in video video games and commercials. You can be shocked to search out out the place a few of these variants ended up.

  • The smallest recognized illustration of Tux is just 130 microns in measurement. It exists on the pad ring of a microprocessor IC.
  • NASA’s use of the Open-Supply Initiative, OpenAPI, ham radio, and Linux distros have been documented and acknowledged a number of years in the past.
  • NASA additionally joined palms with the Linux Convention to launch a Tux-shaped sizzling air balloon into area on January 18, 2011. The excessive altitude balloon titled Challenge Horus 14, flew 30-40km into the sky. An public sale of the signed feat picture raised over $23,000 AUD for flood aid.


Tux has featured in quite a few video games like SuperTux, Tux Paint, SuperTuxKart, Tux Racer, Tux Math Scrabble, and extra. Robe accompanies Tux, his well-known feminine counterpart.

In SuperTux and SuperTuxKart, Robe options Penny, yet one more feminine variant of Tux. Tux 2 and Freeciv featured Trixi and Tuxette, two extra feminine variants of Tux.

Tux has different revisions as Tux Crystal and the extra Viking-friendly PaX Tux. Even Home windows fans take pleasure in Tux Linux penguin wallpapers, theme packs, icon units, and so forth.

Associated: Methods to Mechanically Set New Wallpapers Utilizing Styli.sh on Linux

Be taught Linux to Really Admire Open-Supply

Linux, similar to its brand, is a bit of artwork. From vibrant colours and daring themes to easy-to-use amenities, there’s a little evolution in each bit. From choosing the proper distro to putting in a desktop, Linux leaves you spoilt for alternative at every step.


Should you like customizing your desktop to make it extra engaging, you are in luck. You possibly can obtain a number of eye-catching distros which are eye-candy for Linux customers.


beautiful desktop on a table
The 8 Most Lovely Linux Distros to Please Your Visible Senses

If you need a visually-appealing desktop that you would be able to really name yours, try these eight stunning Linux distros which are eye sweet for customers.

Learn Subsequent


About The Writer

Leave a Comment