BU Linux runs on more than a thousand computers at Boston University, including servers, lab machines, and desktops. Based on the latest open source code of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, with BU customization to help clients take full advantage of the BU environment, it installs easily and requires little system administration.

BU Linux provides automatic security updates, bug fixes,easy account management, and access to thousands of packages. A group configuration file (‘kickstart’) simplifies customization and maintenance of computer labs.


  • Simple installation through the network or by creating your own CD
  • Lab modifications preserved through a group configuration file
  • Automatic security updates and bug fixes, with ability
    to exclude certain packages or update on the customer’s schedule
  • Access to more than 1,000 RPMs, including many BU licensed math-stat programs
  • Easy account administration
  • Guaranteed universal BU ID for those with a BU login name and Kerberos password
  • Consult with clients on availability of various features, packages


  • BU Linux runs on most PCs and Intel-based Macs.
  • Access to BU licensed software limited to on campus.

There is no charge for BU Linux and Linux questions. More time consuming consulting and advice regarding other Linux versions, such as Ubuntu, CentOS, Fedora, and Red Hat, is available for a fee.

Getting Started