In this chapter of the Linux Jargon Buster lets discuss something elementary.
Lets discuss what is a Linux distribution why it is called a distribution or distro and how is it different from the Linux kernel. Youll also learn a thing or two about why some people insist of calling Linux as GNULinux.
A Linux distribution is an operating system composed of the Linux kernel GNU tools additional software and a package manager. It may also include display server and desktop environment to be used as regular desktop operating system.
The term is Linux distribution or distro in short form because an entity like Debian or Ubuntu distributes the Linux kernel along with all the necessary software and utilities like network manager package manager desktop environments etc so that it can be used as an operating system.
Your distributions also takes the responsibility of providing updates to maintain the kernel and other utilities.