What is your favorite Linux distribution?

Register or Login to like
Register or Login to like
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.

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License.
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)

Results

Tags

Comments

224 Comments

Xubuntu

KDE Neon, Kubuntu

I use multiple flavors depending on the situation and the hardware available.

Mageia

PCLinuxOS!

Hmmm - no PCLinuxOS? Any Reason?

LXLE (http://www.lxle.net/)

Gentoo for servers. Why? Apart from having the most robust dependency package tree it allows you total control of the distro components. (very taylored distro for your platform). On the other hand, you will never have to reinstall a new version, just keep it updated using packages management tool. The best, you will have a distro optimized for your hardware. Of course, this is not a distro for common users. For me the only disadvantage is this distro has not an installer which is the main reason people get scare when try it.

PCLinuxOS Fast, Simple and Easy to use.

I "use" several different versions of Linux, as I'm sure others do: Mint, Ubuntu, Zorin, Manjaro, Fedora. I have old favorites that I no longer use: SLS, Slackware, RedHat, Mandrake. I have a favorite in each of several categories. And I have an overall favorite, for which I took this poll to be asking.

For server use, CentOS 6.8. For desktop use, Mint 18.

Qubes OS

Chakra!

Xubuntu. It's on the light side, but more importantly, for me, it incorporates Xfce, which I love because of ease of customization, panels and those fantastic plugins for said panels.

Solus

Anything that does NOT use systemd... that's more microsoft than real linux. These days I use FreeBSD for servers and PCLinuxOS for desktops. Before they joined the dark side I was using CentOS for servers and Linux Mint w/Mate for desktops.

It depends on the use but for embedded, custom OS's built with the Yocto Project.

Slackware for personal use. I go back and forth between Debian and CentOS on servers.

I chose Ubuntu because it has worked for me for several years while rescuing older laptops. Minimal XP laptops come back to life with Lubuntu and later more robust ones really shine running Ubuntu. I have a 32 bit version of Ubuntu on my work laptop that i use for router setups and to clean up Windows machines that have been infested. However I have had good luck rescuing former Win-98 machines with Puppy Linux. My desktop and our kitchen computer run Ubuntu 16.04. My wife went from Win-XP to Ubuntu with very little drama in the kitchen.

I'm using Linux Mint (version 18), (which is a flavor of Ubuntu 16.04).... :-)

I work on enterprise Linux distros at work, but I've been running ubuntu on the desktop since 2008. I ran kubuntu for some time, currently running ubuntu-gnome.

For category other: (1x) MX Linux on netbook, (2x) Raspian on Raspberry Pi development, (1x) Alpine Linux and Hypriot O/S for Docker, and (2x) Volumio on Raspberry PI for high end audio.

Played around with multiple versions of Ubuntu on raspberry but have settled on the Pixel Desktop and XFCE for non-raspberry Pi devices.

Ubuntu+Gnome and Xubuntu for old machines

"Pardus" , certainly

Chakra, chakralinux.org

I do have quite a few favorites, for corporate servers I use CentOS for stability, for home servers I use Mint for ease of use and apps being current (something that is not in CentOS), for desktop I use Arch, however less now. So your question should have stated for which is the use case.

KDE Neon

Both Server and Desktop = CentOS by far ..... excellent engineering, stability of RedHat and great community support! Professional and free.

pclinuxos it just works and the user forums are great.

Chapeau Linux

Puppy Linux!

Trisquel all the WAY!!!!!!!

My favorite Desktop is Linux Mint, but my favorite distros for servers (mostly virtual) are CentOS and Ubuntu.

KDE Neon, with Compiz Reloaded and Docky.

Happiest I've ever been with any operating system :)

UbuntuStudio has everything I need.

I've been using KDE neon for a little while and it is not bad at all. The environment is reasonably light (compared to Gnome and Unity) and looks good.

Plus it has the advantage of the Ubuntu back-end meaning it has access to all the applications as well!

I use Debian for my server, but I grew up with Slackware, since the pre-1.0 kernel days. But, to be honest, I have Knoppix on a thumb drive for troubleshooting problems and accessing downed systems. Knoppix is my most used, I suppose.

I have various uses for different distributions. I prefer OpenSUSE with XFCE for the old machine that is my main Gnu/Linux box; however I also use Knoppix frequently (as a Live USB system) on other folk's computers to sort problems (mainly non booting , or 'no back ups(!) of important stuff such as student's thesis. Then I use Puppy derivatives to introduce folk to Linux when they cannot afford a new computer but want to be safe and not use Windows XP /Vista/ Windows 8 etc. I also explore and use Linux Mint , Kannotix and many others. OpenSUSE's non provision of a Live Linux is offputting to some so the "Gecko Linux" (OpenSUSE as Live Linux) is a very good useable one for learners. Linux Mint is slightly out fro new folks as it no longer bundles media codecs , so is on apar with others for tuition and teaching and is no longer 'first favourite' to introduce learners to Linux.

Slackware :D

Kubuntu

Busenlabs Linux

I choose Debian because its stability, it is an OS that only release a new version when almost every thing works near perfectly.

It all depends on the hardware, and what I use it for. My old laptop (Linux Mint cinnamon) just crashed. Broken hard drive. So now it's running Simplicity (Puppy). I put Linux Mint XFCE on my girlfriend's old Windows 7 PC and she's really happy! I have an old Pentium 4 with 512mb RAM running LXLE. And a server with Ubuntu.

Crunchbag-monara

KDE Neon

Kubuntu
Last year, i wanted to change from kubuntu, but i came back.
Debian, too less updates, too old kernels
same thing Mint
Robolinux, problems with grub. Keyboard after reconnection recognized, and so on.
Now reason, to leave kubuntu.

KDE Neon !

For embedded, so far something with buildroot, for servers gentoo or ubuntu depending on whether I want to fully configure or just set up and go. For desktop, possibly Fedora today.

Other... Gentoo

LXLE is my favorite distro