Discussion: Favorite Linux Distro

My favorite is Arch Linux, because of it's minimal, lightweight, and simple. It comes with no graphical interface and has a great package manager, the cleverly named 'pacman'.

What's your favorite Linux distro?

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47 Responses

I guess I would have to say Arch for the reasons you posted above. But I don't like pacman. Gentoo's Portage hands down is the best package manager.

What do you like about portage more? :)

Smarter dependentancy management, packages aren't broken all the time. Just seems more fun!

Cool man :)

I'm pretty excited for pacman 4, I haven't gotten it from the git repo's yet, but it's got package signing FINALLY, which was a huge disturbance I had with pacman.

Whatever my husband installed.

Seriously, though...as a non-hacker/programmer person, as long as it's set up that I can use it casually, the distro doesn't make that much of a difference to me. Right now I'm using openSUSE (husband's laptop), but there were a few years I was using Ubuntu on my own computer (which had the easiest interface for me to do most of the updates and install apps myself). I know a number of programmers who hate Ubuntu, though.

Yeah, Ubuntu is just bloated and too..forgiving. Once you get down and learn to use Arch or Gentoo, or even Slackware, you learn to love it. The system is only what you make out of it, and it's really gratifying :). It's nice to hear another girl besides my fiance who is forced to use Linux xD.

I recently flicked about through a couple different flavours of linux, namely Backtrack4, Fedora, Arch, and came to rest on Mint. I enjoy Mint for it's immediate usability and user-friendliness. I haven't done too much with it yet but I think as a new linux user it's a good place to start.

That's actually where I stayed too my first while using Linux :). Mint is a great distro, especially after some tinkering. It's got the fastest shutdown time I've ever seen xD. I used it for about 2 months back when Mint 8 came out.

Yea, I really enjoyed it for the small amount of time I've been able to play with it. Although, I'm not sure what tinkering I should really do.. Perhaps you could make a post about that? I would love to get some sweet desktop customization going.

I guess I could, though I don't use Gnome D;. I use KDE, awesome, i3, and openbox.

Well then your tutorial could begin by outlining how to make the change from Gnome to KDE or some such :P

I like Fedora, because it's easy to install, it's minimal and we can choose our graphical interface easily.

If you want a minimal *nix distro that has the flexibility to grow to whatever you desire you should move away from Linux altogether and start with one of the BSD products.  On the Linux side I always favored Slackware in the past but I haven't used it in years.

I used to like Ubuntu up untill Ubuntu 11.04. Once they started that whole unity thing i stoped carring for it. I tried to go back to Ubuntu when 11.10 came out since it lets you choose between Gnome 3 and ubuntu. The only problem i had was that i was able to run unity 3d but when i would try to login into Gnome it would always go back to fallback mode. Currently i am using Fedora Core 15. I am very happy with it. It took some getting used to but am happy with it.

You should really try Arch ^_^. I agree, Unity was an AWFUL choice for Ubuntu to make. I've not used Fedora since core 4 xD.

I'm currently on Linux Mint, but I've used Damn Small Linux a bit and that's quite cool :)

I'll definitely try Arch Linux, you have some good points.

I have been messing around with linux to see which one I like the most...

I have used:

Sabayon (gentoo based)(best so far)

Ubuntu (many different versions)


Zorin-OS (not that great)


Edit: Also used backtrack and puppy linux for a bit

I've been hearing loads about Sabayon, I might try it when I get a new computer. I'll throw it in a VM or something.

Yea, I didn't run in to any real problems with it... My wireless card even worked by default in it, unlike Ubuntu and Ubuntu based distros. All that I really ran into was my track-pad randomly not working after logging in and the in-ability to really customize gnome 3

edit: Gah, I really need to find a good linux distro for me... My windows explorer keeps crashing

Haha, Arch is the way to go ^_^. I love my system :D.

I would love to try it but... My laptop is special and needs a lot of special drives.

Drivers? All Linux distros drivers are cross-compatible with all versions.

You do not want to know what I have to go through to get my wireless and screen to work...

Install compat-wireless and xf86-video-<drivername>? It's pretty uniform :), I can help if you need.

You know, you are horrible... You CANNOT enable an addict like that. 

*Is downloading archbang now*

Must...Try....New...OS....... (>;_;)>  

Haha, let's hope the installation goes smoother :D.

greetz alex, was talking to you in IRC the other night, your article about Arch has been keeping me busy, I got it dual booting with windows 7 on my laptizzle. The arch wiki is exhaustive and vital for anyone whos gonna attempt it, you need to have the wiki open on another machine. Ill report back once Ive got a UI loaded and some apps. Thanks for introducing me to Arch though, the whole Arch philosophy suits me to the core, Ive always wanted to know exactly whats going on under the hood of an OS and so far just installing the bare bones of it has been a great learning experience.


Im glad to hear that! Make sure to keep stopping by IRC.

Hm, after using all *buntu's and trying out mint, I had a choice, Arch or #!.

Honestly, I could not properly install Arch, I got through all of the steps needed, but once it was time to install GRUB on the partition I wanted (for dual-booting) I could not seem to do it. That's where I got stuck. So I looked up distro's similar to Arch in terms of minimalism. #! seemed nice and I am currently trialling it on my VBox. Can't fault it yet. Extremely fast, VERY customizable and does not come with a bunch of crap I would never get to use, like Ubuntu for example. (No offence to Ubuntu users. It's a good distro, but I don't like the way they force-feed you the software THEY think is best for you, even if it is free).

Maybe when I retire my laptop and move windows to a custom built gaming rig, I will let my lappie become an arch machine. ^-^

Debian, Gentoo and Arch are my favourite distributions. I like Debian because it's so stable, Gentoo because of portage and Arch because of the simplicity and the community. Great Wiki and AUR.

Took the words out of my mouth. Three best distros, hands down.

 Awh, you should let me help you! :D The installation of GRUB can be trivial. When you install GRUB on a dual boot rig, make sure you install it to /dev/sda which is where the master boot record is :D (you actually dont isntall grub to the partition you specified for "boot", that is just a file path to access and configure it, unless you aren't running a dual boot :D).

The funny thing is, this is exactly what I was doing, I did specify the /dev/sda

but it still spat out an error. What a bummer eh? Maybe my mbr is a bit wonky after all those re-installs of different buntu's (before I knew what a virtual machine was). 

:( You should try "ArchBang". The isntaller is easier, and comes with a GUI, etc. It's still "Arch", but it's not really the Arch-way. It would make the isntall easier for you though, and have you in a GUI :D.

Well I have it up and running, just doing -Syu. I'll play around a bit and see how I like it. Much reading to do on wiki anyway. Damn me and my OS_adhd....

ARGH!! Where's the backbiting? Where's the breakdown of civility? Why doesn't the *nix community argue like the rest of the world? You people are all too danged happy!

FINE! I'll be the one to start the flame warz! Apple or Windoze is the way to go. It's sooooooo much better than any *nix system. There. Now you can argue amongst yourselves and beat each other over the heads about why you think your system is vastly superior to all others.

--- Posted from my computer running Linux Mint VM. Now I'm going to try Arch!

Well in my mind now OS is perfect, an OS is should be designed around the user not how the company that owns the OS thinks it should be and via programs this can be done to every OS basically; whether the program has yet to be created it can still be done. There flame war averted, also if you are new to Arch try going with ArchBang.

As stated by Bird andBear, Mac is *nix, Apple is based off of Darwin and Steve Jobs work on NextStep, and the BSD families. The only reason Apple isn't called "Unix" is because of licensing with AT&T which is the same reason BSD isn't called "Unix". OS X is a good platform for having a user friendly *nix with an awesome graphical interface, but a poor choice for developers of user-land tools (IMO) since the API's for iOS lock the developer from accessing many core features (I'm sure that was the original intention since it helps 'theoretically' secure the system).  In fact you could argue that Window is *nix based since they have taken so much from the community and (poorly) implemented it in their own system. You can read more about my recent laughter with Apple fans here.  As a last note the reason the *nix community doesn't 'argue' is most likely because we are a community not a mash-up of users like Windows customers.

Mac OS is *nix based. It's awfully similar once you get used to it. Windows on the other hand is the odd one out, and I personally dislike it. It has it's place though..

Well, I'm going to try installing ArchBang on a VM and see how I like it.

I still think you lot are too danged happy though. You don't even get the crappy driver support the rest of us get. How could you possibly live with yourselves when your OS doesn't just lock up every once in a while for no apparent reason? You don't even get your OS bootloader assuming that it's the only game in town and unilaterally overwriting any existing one. How could you enjoy something like that?

Just a twisted individual I suppose :P

Because we manage to live our lives in a twisted state like Bird andBear said


Ive installed backtrack 5 r2, been playing around with it, what is every ones opinion of this distro?

I like it including the choice of tools that it comes with but I don't see it as distro to install to HDD. I prefer to use it as a live cd or live USB to get what you need done than bop back over to your normal distro. Most distros like Backtrack are Ubuntu based and all the creator needed to do was reskin, add tools, get rid of things and throw it onto a dvd ISO and call it a new Distro basically.

I have heard it rumoured that this one (as well as others from BT) set off alarms while pen-testing. That may not even be true, and it may not be relevant, but I have heard it said and I would hate to have potentially left you with your virtual pants down.

I came across http://susestudio.com/ .. You can *literally* make your own linux disto using simple and easy to use UI.. ^^

I've used the same online software before but I never sticked to the distro I made, to many bugs in it that I didn't feel like squashing.

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