Red Hat is a company that makes Red Hat Linux an RPM-based, GNU/Linux distribution that gained some degree of corporate acceptance as a viable server operating system and has some market share in the corporate enterprise. Red Hat was one of the first Linux distributions to feature a graphical installer.
In 2003 Red Hat announced their plan to partially abandon their legacy as a user friendly, desktop distribution and to focus their efforts on their enterprise server products and paid support programs under a brand new name, Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Thus, Red Hat will no longer exist as a Linux distribution name. Fedora is now aimed at the desktop market while Red Hat Enterprise Linux is aimed at the coporate market and the latter has become its primary product.
In 2004, Red Hat announced that it is developing a version of GNU/Linux aimed at the desktop market. While Red Hat's focus for this product will probably be corporations, Red Hat (in competition with Suse) may also be trying to take over the home desktop market from Microsoft.
History of Red Hat Linux
1993: Young incorporates ACC Corporation, was a catalog business that sold Linux and Unix software accessories and books and distributed a magazine called New York UNIX.
1994: Marc Ewing created his own distribution of GNU/Linux which he named Red Hat Linux, which was released in October. It becomes known as the Halloween release.
1995: Young later bought Ewing's business, merged it with ACC Corporation, and named the new company Red Hat Software.
Red Hat Linux 2.0 marked the official release of the new package management system called RPM.
Feburary 1999: IBM and Red Hat announce Linux Alliance.
This is how one of the most popular distributions came into existence.
In 2003 Red Hat announced the creation of the Fedora project. Red Hat now only provides support for its enterprise edition, while Fedora is the free testing distribution, the next in the series after Red Hat 9. Fedora can be found at http://fedora.redhat.com.