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Patrick Volkerding (born 20th October 1966) is the founder and maintainer of the Slackware Linux distribution. He is the "Slackware Benevolent Dictator for Life." Volkerding earned a Bachelor of Science in computer science from Minnesota State University Moorhead in 1993.

For a short while, Chris Lumens and others have assisted with his work on Slackware. Due to the lack of a continuing revenue stream following the sale of his publisher, Walnut Creek CDROM, to BSDi (which was ultimately sold to Wind River Systemsmarker), these people had to be let go. For the last several years Patrick Volkerding has managed Slackware with the help of many volunteers and testers. Volkerding brings out new releases of Slackware roughly once a year.


Patrick is a SubGenius affiliate/member. The use of the word Slack in "Slackware" is a homage to J. R. "Bob" Dobbs: ". I'll admit that it was SubGenius inspired. In fact, back in the 2.0 through 3.0 days we used to print a dobbshead on each CD."


On 2005-11-22, Patrick's wife Andrea delivered their first child, a girl, Briah Cecilia Volkerding.

Patrick is an avid homebrewer and beer lover . Early versions of Slackware would entreat users to send him a bottle of local beer in appreciation for his work.

Patrick is a Deadhead. As of early April 1994 he had been to as many as 75 shows.


  • Volkerding, Patrick, and Reichard, Kevin, Linux System Commands, IDG Books/M&T Books, 2000, ISBN 0-7645-4669-4
  • Volkerding, Patrick, Reichard, Kevin, and Foster-Johnson, Eric, InstalaciĆ³n y configuraciĆ³n de Linux, Temas profesionales. Madrid: Anaya Multimedia, 1999 ISBN 84-415-0816-X
  • Volkerding, Patrick, Reichard, Kevin, and Foster-Johnson, Eric, LINUX Configuration and Installation, M&T Books, 1998, ISBN 0-7645-7005-6
  • Volkerding, Patrick, and Reichard, Kevin, Linux in Plain English, MIS:Press, 1997, ISBN 1-5582-8542-3


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