The Debian Project is an association of individuals who have made common cause to create a free operating system. This operating system that they have created is called Debian. An operating system is the set of basic programs and utilities that make your computer run. At the core of an operating system is the kernel. The kernel is the most fundamental program on the computer and does all the basic housekeeping and lets you start other programs. Debian systems currently use the Linux kernel or the FreeBSD kernel.