Though FreeDOS is not a member of the Linux or BSDs families, the operating system is free software, licensed under the GNU General Public license. FreeDOS got its start as a Microsoft DOS clone and replacement back in the mid-1990s when Microsoft announced it was discontinuing development of its DOS platform. Since then the FreeDOS project has been used to run legacy DOS programs, been used as a platform from which to manage firmware and acted as a minimal operating system on low-end computers. The project's founder, Jim Hall, announced the release of FreeDOS 1.2 on December 25th. The new release features many applications and a few games on top of the core operating system and offers users a new system installer. "The FreeDOS 1.2 release is an updated, more modern FreeDOS. You'll see that we changed many of the packages. Some packages were replaced, deprecated by newer and better packages. We also added other packages. And we expanded what we should include in the FreeDOS distribution. Where FreeDOS 1.0 and 1.1 where fairly spartan distributions with only "core" packages and software sets, the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution includes a rich set of additional packages. We even include games. But the biggest change you are likely to notice in FreeDOS 1.2 is the updated installer. Jerome Shidel wrote an entirely new FreeDOS install program, and it looks great! We focused on keeping the new installer simple and easy to use. While many DOS users in 2016 are experienced DOS programmers and DOS power users, we often see many new users to FreeDOS, and I wanted to make the install process pleasant for them. The default mode for the installer is very straightforward, and you only have to answer a few questions to install FreeDOS on your system." Further information and a history of the project can be found in Hall's release announcement.