Matthew Garrett

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Matthew Garrett
Garrett in 2016, standing outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had received asylum, holding a sign saying "You're not even a Wiki"
BornGalway, Ireland
Other namesmjg59
EducationComputational Genetics
Alma materUniversity of Cambridge
OccupationSoftware developer
Known forFree software development and advocacy
AwardsFree Software Award

Matthew Garrett is an Irish technologist, programmer, and free software activist who is a major contributor to a series of free software projects including Linux, GNOME, Debian, Ubuntu, and Red Hat. He has received the Free Software Award from the Free Software Foundation (FSF) for his work on Secure Boot, UEFI, and the Linux kernel.

Life and career

Garrett was born in Galway, Ireland, and has a PhD in genetics from the University of Cambridge. He is the author of several articles on Drosophila melanogaster (i.e., fruit fly) genetics.

Garrett has been a contributor to the GNOME and the Debian Linux projects, was an early contributor to Ubuntu, was an initial member of the Ubuntu Technical Board, worked as a contractor at Canonical Ltd., and worked at Red Hat.

At Canonical Ltd. and Red Hat, Garrett worked on power management in Linux. While at Red Hat, Garrett also worked on issues relating to Secure Boot and UEFI and the Linux kernel to preserve users' ability to run the operating system of their choosing on hardware supporting Secure Boot. This work eventually led to his being awarded the 2013 FSF Free Software Award.

Garrett worked at the cloud computing platform company CoreOS and is cited in the press as an expert in cloud computing issues. From 2017 until 2021, he worked for Google and is currently employed at Aurora.

On January 9, 2023, Garrett was selected to the member of Debian Technical Committee.

He has received the Free Software Award from the Free Software Foundation for his work on Secure Boot, UEFI, and the Linux kernel.


Garrett has been a strong advocate for software freedom and compliance with the GNU General Public License (GPL) in the Linux kernel. For example, Garrett filed a complaint with US Customs against Fusion Garage due to violations of the GPL.

In March 2021, Garrett, who had served on the Free Software Foundation's board of directors, signed an open letter to the FSF calling for the removal of its entire board and for Richard Stallman to be removed from all leadership positions.


  1. ^ a b Gareth Greenaway (27 January 2013). "INTERVIEW: Matthew Garrett". SCALE. Retrieved 8 October 2014.
  2. ^ a b c "Matthew Garrett, GNOME Foundation's Outreach Program for Women are Free Software Award winners". Free Software Foundation. 21 March 2014. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
  3. ^ Garrett, Matthew (11 August 2014). "birthplace". mjg59's journal.
  4. ^ Garrett, Matthew James (2010). "Comparative genomic analysis as a tool for locating novel functional elements in D. melanogaster". Cambridge, UK: University of Cambridge. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. ^ Garrett, Matthew; Ane Fullaondo, Larent Troxler, Gos Micklem, David Gubb (22 October 2009). "Identification and analysis of serpin-family genes by homology and synteny across the 12 sequenced Drosophilid genomes". BMC Genomics. 10 (1): 489. doi:10.1186/1471-2164-10-489. ISSN 1471-2164. PMC 2770083. PMID 19849829.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  6. ^ Hudson, Stephanie G.; Matthew J. Garrett, Joseph W. Carlson, Gos Micklem, Susan E. Celniker, Elliott S. Goldstein, Stuart J. Newfeld (1 November 2007). "Phylogenetic and Genomewide Analyses Suggest a Functional Relationship Between kayak, the Drosophila Fos Homolog, and fig, a Predicted Protein Phosphatase 2C Nested Within a kayak Intron". Genetics. 177 (3): 1349–1361. doi:10.1534/genetics.107.071670. ISSN 0016-6731. PMC 2147949. PMID 18039871. Retrieved 23 March 2014.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  7. ^ Guo, Jiannan; Matthew Garrett, Gos Micklem, Saverio Brogna (15 February 2011). "Poly(A) Signals Located near the 5′ End of Genes Are Silenced by a General Mechanism That Prevents Premature 3′-End Processing". Molecular and Cellular Biology. 31 (4): 639–651. doi:10.1128/MCB.00919-10. ISSN 0270-7306. PMC 3028650. PMID 21135120.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  8. ^ Garrett, Matthew (27 July 2004). "Application from Matthew Garrett". GNOME Foundation Membership Applications mailing list.
  9. ^ Garrett, Matthew (5 May 2014). "Application from Matthew Garrett". GNOME Foundation Membership Applications mailing list.
  10. ^ "Intel's Rapid Start Technology Will Soon Hit Linux". 6 July 2013. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  11. ^ "Microsoft, Red Hat spar over secure boot-loading tech". Computer News Middle East. 25 September 2011.
  12. ^ Magnanti, Dr Brooke. "Could the UK really block internet porn?". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
  13. ^ "Matthew Garrett / Linux Plumbers Conference: Developing the Kernel, Libraries and Utilities".
  14. ^ Carter, Jonathan. "New appointment for the Debian Technical Committee: mjg59". Archived from the original on 19 January 2023. Retrieved 29 February 2024.
  15. ^ Matthew Garrett files case with US Customs against Fusion Garage, 2010.
  16. ^ Meeker, Heather J. (2012). "Open Source and the Age of Enforcement". Hastings Science & Technology Law Journal. 4 (267).
  17. ^ Brodkin, Jon (23 March 2021). "Free software advocates seek removal of Richard Stallman and entire FSF board". Ars Technica. Retrieved 26 April 2021.
  18. ^ "An open letter to remove Richard M. Stallman from all leadership positions". Retrieved 25 March 2021.