What is your favorite Linux distribution?

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How to upgrade your Fedora Linux system with DNF

Opensource.com

Of all the many questions you might ask an open source enthusiast, none may evoke quite the passionate response as asking which distribution they prefer.

People choose a distribution for many reasons, from look and feel to stability, from speed to how it runs on older machines, from the pace of updates to simply which offers the packages they need. Whatever the reason, with so many distributions available, asking which one you use can be seen as a proxy for asking how you choose to interact with your computer.

And even if you've been a die-hard fan of a particular distribution, it doesn't mean your preferences can't change over time. Trying out new distros can bring new perspectives and experiences, and makes it easier for you to make informed recommendations as you help friends, family, and colleagues make the switch to Linux.

So as we do every year, we'd like to take this opportunity to ask you what your favorite Linux distribution is, and why? In order to keep it to a manageable number of choices in our poll, we've limited it to the top ten distributions according to DistroWatch over the past 12 months. The list is far from scientific—it biases towards users of desktop distributions sitting behind unique IP addresses who take the time to visit and be counted—but it's a starting point.

If your favorite distribution isn't on this list, let us know what it is in the comments. And regardless of what distribution you've chosen as your favorite, the important thing is to let us know why you love it. So head on down to the comments and sing the praises of your favorite distros, and remember, keep it civil.

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8940 votes tallied
Arch
12% (1050 votes)
CentOS
4% (387 votes)
Debian
11% (997 votes)
elementary OS
3% (257 votes)
Fedora
11% (961 votes)
Manjaro
7% (586 votes)
Mint
16% (1408 votes)
openSUSE
4% (354 votes)
Ubuntu
22% (1960 votes)
Zorin
1% (73 votes)
Other (let us know in the comments)
10% (907 votes)

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224 Comments

I perfer the new Netrunner based on Debian. Maui is nice if you're looking for a sleek Neon KDE distro. Lastly, then there are others like Kali, Viperr, Korora, Ubuntu Studio I have on dev boxs for play. Thats the fun of Linux ... I love them all:)!!

Netrunner 17.01

Other: Solus

Ubuntu and Linux from Scratch.I usually use LFS for developments and Ubuntu for personal use

There is no favorite, everytime I've tried Linux I end up spending way too much time having to do sysadmin stuff.
I would like a simpler system with a single that can access to the full system, and complete GUI for everything, so there never would be a need for starting up a command line.

linux is not linux if you are not using xterm or
gnome-term etc.

MX Linux is my favorite distro.

Tired of ubuntu bloat and spyware, I moved to Debian.

MX takes debian and adds some great tweaks without bloating. Some of the tweaks such as for browsers makes it even more efficient. To run Mint xfce on an old 32bit laptop I have, it needs 2gig RAM and even then it's sluggish. With MX Linux on the same laptop with 1gig RAM it runs better than mint with 2gig.

I've played around with Linux many times distro hopping over the past decade or so. However Windows 7 Professional is my main desktop but now it's time to abandon it since Microsoft keeps sabotaging this last great Windows OS (I won't touch Windows 8/10 - ever!).

Anywho, I was just playing around with liveusb editions of MX Linux 16.1, Netrunner 17.03 & 17.06 (KDE). Wow, friggin amazing! Really REALLY tough decision.

I love what Blue Systems have done with KDE Plasma - Netrunner truly is a polished KDE distro...17.03 only uses 400MB RAM at startup and 17.06 uses 440MB RM (amazing for a KDE distro with so many features). This is on the liveusb too.

But MX Linux is so smooth and fast - just really well thought out. I would not hesitate to use any of these 2 in production. I'm leaning more towards KDE though since I have a powerful laptop. But XFCE in MX Linux is pretty awesome too.

I will decide what I'll install next week - maybe. I'm tried of the Windows ecosystem. Microsoft has killed Windows. Like I said, Windows 8/10 will never ever see the light of day on any of my systems. And Windows 7 eventually starts to get sloooow.

On my dual boot laptop, I use Windows 10 (secondary boot oder) and Fedora (pimary boot order).
I like Fedora because it seems to be very proofessional and complete in its appearance and performance. I use Windows Office running with the help of WINE with absolutely no problems.

For my older, very low spec laptops, I either use Damn Small Linux, or Puppy Linux, depending on which one the individual laptop likes better.

I use Windows 10 as a last resort for some very specific software, and that is not that often, which is why it is the secondary boot option on my laptop.

My desktop machines (all 3 of them) are various Apple machines running OSX.

Xubuntu
Lighter but not too light

Other: Solus

Ubuntu MATE!!!!

Why not exist to Gentoo and Slackware?

KDE Neon as other

Slacko/Puppy Linux, small and portable, and works!

KDE Neon

I use Ubuntu specifically Mate. Simple to setup & customize. Works out of the box. For server CentOS. For pen testing and such Debian testing.

I distro hop occasionally...but always go back to Arch Linux

Puppy Linux and Quirky Linux

I still am an avid fan of Gentoo.

Same here. Hard to go to a bland Terminal after the love affair.

Antergos

My favourite is RosaLinux, although on one computer I love having Mageia, since I loved Mandrake/Mandriva for years.

Erik

I found the question almost impossible to answer. My favourite distro was Redhat 7.1 (which is what I voted for), but I don't use it any longer. I used to like Fedora but I went off it around version 9, which is about when KDE3.5 stopped being available. It was the same story with Mandriva, which I moved to after Fedora 9. Now I'm running OpenSuse and I'll be moving on again, most likely to PCLinuxOs.

Gentoo.

Antergos

For me Debian no doubt

Maui

Point Linux, "Debian base"

I'm a KDE desktop user and am very happy with OpenSUSE Tumbleweed, being a rolling distribution for what I prefer. SUSE was the first Linux distro I was able to get to work for me, several years ago. I also like and have used Kubuntu, Debian and the old Mandriva.

Tahr puppy all the way. Best distro I have ever used!!

Ubuntu Mate

Other. Slackware.

Solus for sure

Linux from scratch, the ultimate custom system.

Gentoo

BunsenLabs

I am using Mint 17.3. I used Ubuntu from v4 until the gnome V3 issue started. I would like to format my laptop during spring and install new OS. I am considering Mint18 but also other linux OS as well with systemd incorporated for example. To learn more about recent technology.

Gentoo

I've got two favorites: Fedora and Slackware. Too bad I can't pick two, but there it is.

Currently rocking MX-16. I know it's another variant of Debian but I like the polish and feel.

Completed 95% of grad school on Xubuntu.

Slackware since Pat released it. Lately, I also use Fedora for dev work that I do for http://openlp.org

Sparky Linux

Arch Linux, Debian, Tiny Core Linux (in no particular order). Enjoying the ones that are a challenge for myself :)

Three way tie: Sparky Linux, Q4OS, and Debian. Sometimes one is above the other two, depending upon what I am working on that day.

TTOS Linux. It came pre-installed on my computer. https://www.ttpc-systems.com/ttpc-blog/index.php/ttos/

Xubuntu and Redcore

http://NimbleX.net

Mint LXDE