How to choose a Linux Distro

Abhishta Gatya
Aug 6, 2017 · 4 min read
The average Linux User : Art by Lynda.com

For those of you who uses Linux as their daily driver, you earned yourself a cookie. But for those who wants to start using Linux, I present to you this short guide to diving right in the world of Linux and all its glory, so lets get started.

What is Linux?

Linux is no different than Windows or Mac OS, it is basically an Operating System but the major different is that it is Free for everyone. It being Open Source means it belongs to nobody and is free to download and use for everyone. It is rapidly growing in number of users and features everyday because of people and community contributing to Linux to make it better and powerful. Now there are literally Hundreds or maybe Thousands of Linux distros to choose from and this guide will help you pick what Fits your needs and specifications. So keep reading along.

What is the Best Linux Distro for you?

There are so many websites and blogs making Top 10 Lists of Linux Distros and I highly recommend you to visit them. But, in this article we will talk more about “fitting needs” because a Computer has so many functionality and everybody’s preferences and needs are different so we are going to classify the best Linux distributions based on that.

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Fitting Needs

Either you are a programmer, musician, designer, photographer, video editor or even an average user, Linux will be your best friend with the right distributions. We are going to discuss 3 Most important things when choosing a Linux Distribution and that is Needs , Requirements and Support. When finding a Linux distro, make sure there is a huge community and lots of people contributing to it. Otherwise the project has a risk of abandonment, lack of updates and application support.

Needs

When using a computer you rely on Softwares to help your work faster and efficient. If you are coming from Windows or Mac, you are probably used to propriety softwares such as Adobe, FL Studio, MS Office and etc. In Linux, Open Source softwares are really well supported in updates and community forums. So switching or having the skills to use an alternative from your “Main” Software is a really good move. But, if you don’t want to switch from your “Main” Software, it is not a problem because most propriety softwares put in the effort to add Linux as a usable platform for their apps, but in the case where that app/software does not support Linux, you can use a software called Wine and PlayOnLinux to make that software run on Linux like it would normally run on a Windows Machine. So in terms of Application and Software, you are all set if you are ready to learn an alternative software or finding a way to make it run on Linux.

Requirements

Linux runs on almost everything, since it has such a low requirements it runs smoothly on even an old computer. Some Linux distros are even Dual-bootable, meaning you can switch between your Main Operating System and use Linux as an alternative in the same Computer. I don’t really recommend Dual-Booting because many issues can occur to your Computer if you installed it incorrectly, but If you still want to have Linux on the same computer as your main operating system, there are Virtual Machines to help you. If you have an old laptop that runs really slow, I recommend to try installing a light linux distro and it will run much smoother.

Support

In terms of support, Linux delivers decently. Being Open Source means anybody and everybody can contribute to it to improve Linux, so that is why there is Long Term Support (LTS) and the frequently updated version. The LTS of distributions tends to be stable, good application support and a good community support, while the frequently update version tends to be less stable but more cutting-edge technology. If you are an average user, I advice you use the LTS version, although its less advance, but stability in a new environment is better to have.

Conclusion

That was all the main things to know about Linux before you consider switching. I still highly recommend that you do because Linux is growing vastly and you wouldn’t want to be eaten by the wave. If you want to try out Linux before completely switching it as your daily driver, there are many ways you can do it. Me personally, am a distro-hopper, meaning that I switch distros frequently, some sticks and be used as my main driver and some just completely replaced by another. So go explore some Linux distros and try it out, if it fits your needs better than what you are using right now, why not. I’m going to make my own Top 10 Linux Distro and Applications so that you can know more about it.

Author : Abhishta Gatya Adyatma

Email : savecomm@yahoo.com / abhishtagatya@yahoo.com


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Abhishta Gatya

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