X.Org Foundation

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X.Org Foundation
Founded22 January 2004; 20 years ago (2004-01-22)
ProductX.Org Server
Parent organization
Software in the Public Interest

The X.Org Foundation is a non-profit corporation chartered to research, develop, support, organize, administrate, standardize, promote, and defend a free and open accelerated graphics stack. This includes, but is not limited to, the following projects: DRM, Mesa 3D, Wayland, and the X Window System and its primary implementation, the X.Org Server.[1][2]


The X.Org Foundation was founded on 22 January 2004.[3]

The modern X.Org Foundation came into being when the body that oversaw X standards and published the official reference implementation joined forces with former XFree86 developers.[4] The creation of the Foundation marked a radical change in the governance of X (see the history of the X Window System). Whereas the stewards of X since 1988 (including the previous X.Org, part of The Open Group) had been vendor organizations, the Foundation is led by software developers and using community development on the bazaar model, which relies on outside involvement. Membership is also open to individuals, with corporate membership being in the form of sponsorship.

In 2005 the X.Org Foundation applied for 501(c)(3) non-profit status. In 2012, with the help of the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC), the Foundation gained the status. In 2013, the Foundation lost the status because they did not fill a tax form (it had no income to declare and did not get any info from SFLC) and in the same year it regained the status, after clearing up the issue.[5] In 2016, the X.Org Foundation joined Software in the Public Interest (SPI)[6] who would manage the bureaucracy.[7]

According to an October 2018 article published by Phoronix, freedesktop.org considered joining the X.Org Foundation.[8][when?]

In 2023, The X.Org Foundation decided to join Software Freedom Conservancy.[6]

Fields of activity[edit]

The X.Org Foundation does not provide technical guidance, roadmaps or deadlines, releases or supervision of any kind.

The X.Org Foundation does provide communication tools (in relation with freedesktop.org), an annual physical meeting and money to help developing the free graphics stack.

  • a physical annual meeting (X.Org Developer's Conference)
  • Travel sponsorship:
  • The X.Org Foundation participated as an organization of the Google Summer of Code (GSoC). This allows students to participate to X.Org-related projects over the summer .
  • Endless Vacation of Code (EVoC): EVoC is a GSoC-like project, funded by the X.Org Foundation. It allows students to participate to X.Org-related projects during their vacation, at any time of the year.
  • Communication: Google+[needs update] and Twitter Google+/YouTube: Store and/or link to talk videos, slides, blog articles or G+ posts related to projects under our umbrella (Martin Peres); Twitter: Mostly security issues, random updates (Alan Coopersmith).
  • There is an X.Org developer guide written by Alan Coopersmith, Matt Dew and the X.Org team; edited by Bart Massey at https://www.x.org/wiki/guide/

The X.Org Foundation organizes the annual X.Org Developer's Conference (XDC) and sponsors students to work on X.Org as part of their X.Org Endless Vacation of Code (EVoC) initiative.[9]

The X.Org Server and xlib are the reference implementation of the X protocol, and is commonly used on Linux and UNIX; it is the fundamental technology underlying both the modern GNOME and KDE desktops and older CDE desktop environment; applications written for any of these environments can be run simultaneously.


Along with reference implementation of X protocol, the X.org Foundation hosts development of several utilities and example applications, including xcalc on-screen calculator, xclock simple digital and analog clock, xedit text editor, xload periodically updated histogram of the average system load, xterm terminal emulator, and xeyes which shows a pair of eyes that follow the mouse cursor.

As of April 2013, the Board of Directors consisted of Alan Coopersmith, Alex Deucher, Martin Peres, Matt Dew, Matthias Hopf, Peter Hutterer (Secretary), Stuart Kreitman (Treasurer), and Keith Packard.[10]

X.Org Developer's Conference[edit]

The physical meeting is the X.Org Developer's Conference (XDC/XDS),[11] which is organized once a year, around September/October and alternates between North America and Europe and lasts for 3 days. The board of directors can cover the travel and accommodation expenses to the developers who couldn't attend an X.Org-related conference (XDC or FOSDEM?) otherwise.

Conference history[edit]

Event and year Date Host city Venue Resources Themes
XDC2004 28–30 April Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA Cambridge Research Laboratory https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2004/
XDC2005 12–14 February Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA Cambridge Research Laboratory https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2005/ X.Org Server, Cairo, xephyr, ...
XDC2006 8–10 February Santa Clara, California, USA Sun Microsystems campus https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2006/ Xgl,
XDC2007 7–9 February Menlo Park, California, USA TechShop Menlo Park facility https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2007/
XDS2007 10–12 September Cambridge, United Kingdom Clare College https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDS2007/
XDC2008 16–18 April Mountain View, California, USA Google campus https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2008/
XDS2008 3–5 September Edinburgh, United Kingdom Edinburgh Zoo https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDS2008/ XKB, MPX, ...
XDC2009 28–30 September Portland, Oregon, USA University Place Hotel, Portland State University https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2009/
XDS2010 16–18 September Toulouse, France Toulouse 1 University Capitole https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDS2010/
XDC2011 12–14 September Chicago, Illinois, USA McCormick Tribune Campus Center https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2011/
XDC2012 19–21 September Nuremberg, Germany SUSE campus https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2012/
XDC2013 23–25 September Portland, Oregon, USA University Place Hotel, Portland State University https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2013/ DRM, DRI3, XCB, nouveau, etc.
XDC2014 8–10 October Bordeaux, France Laboratoire Bordelais de Recherche en Informatique (LaBRI) https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2014/ Wayland, Tizen, FreeBSD, DragonflyBSD, Mesa 3D, etc.
XDC2015 16–18 September Toronto, Canada Seneca@York campus, Seneca College https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2015/ GLSL compiler, Nouveau, libinput, Freedreno, Etnaviv, amdgpu, drm, etc.
XDC2016 20–22 September Helsinki, Finland Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2016/
XDC2017 20–22 September Mountain View, California, USA Google Bldg 1055 https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2017/
XDC2018 26–28 September A Coruña, Galicia (Spain) Computer Science Faculty of University of A Coruña https://www.x.org/wiki/Events/XDC2018/
XDC2019 2–4 October Montreal, Canada Concordia University Conference Centre [1]
XDC2020 16-18 September Virtual Virtual https://xdc2020.x.org/ Archived 7 July 2020 at the Wayback Machine
XDC2021 15-17 September Virtual Virtual https://indico.freedesktop.org/event/1/
XDC2022 4-6 October Minneapolis, Minnesota University of St. Thomas https://indico.freedesktop.org/event/2/
XDC2023 17-19 October Coruña, Spain PALEXCO https://indico.freedesktop.org/event/4/

X.Org Endless Vacation of Code (EVoC)[edit]

X.Org Endless Vacation of Code (EVoC) is a Google Summer of Code (GSoC)-like project initiated in 2008 funded by the X.Org Foundation. It allows students to participate to X.Org-related projects during their vacation, at any time of the year.

An example of an accepted EVoC project from 2014 is to work on nouveau, the free and open-source graphics device driver for GeForce-branded GPUs.[12] NVA3/5/8 are the engineering names of the Tesla-based GT215, GT216 and GT218.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Proposed Bylaws of the X.Org Foundation" (PDF). 22 March 2015.
  2. ^ "FOSDEM2014: State of the X.Org Foundation". 1 February 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2014.
  3. ^ "X.Org Foundation releases X Window System X11R6.7". LWN.net. 7 April 2004. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
  4. ^ Coopersmith, Alan (28 May 2004). "The difference between Xorg and XFree86". Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  5. ^ "The X.Org Foundation and the 501(c)(3) status".
  6. ^ a b Michael Larabel (23 May 2023). "X.Org Foundation To Become Part Of The SFC".
  7. ^ "State of the X.org foundation". archive.fosdem.org.
  8. ^ "FreeDesktop.org Might Formally Join Forces with the X.Org Foundation".
  9. ^ "The X.Org Endless Vacation of Code (EVoC)". 21 September 2008. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
  10. ^ "The X.Org Foundation Board of Directors". 19 April 2013. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  11. ^ "The 2013 "State of X.Org" report". LWN.net. 22 February 2013. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  12. ^ "[Nouveau] EVoC Proposal: REclock - Reverse-engineer and implement NVA3/5/8 Voltage- and Frequency Scaling in Nouveau". freedesktop.org. 12 June 2014.
  13. ^ "Engineering vs. marketing names". freedesktop.org.

External links[edit]