Which Linux distribution do you use most frequently?

We're collecting this data to run in an upcoming issue of Linux Journal. We encourage you to leave comments here letting us know why you use the Linux distribution you do. Let your voice be heard! Heads up: we may print your comment in the magazine (if you don't want your comment printed, please let us know that within the comment itself).
Arch Linux
7% (758 votes)
CentOS
2% (219 votes)
Debian
8% (922 votes)
Fedora
8% (879 votes)
Gentoo
4% (457 votes)
Mandriva
6% (626 votes)
MEPIS
2% (172 votes)
Novell/SuSE
12% (1323 votes)
PCLinuxOS
4% (491 votes)
Red Hat
1% (123 votes)
Slackware
4% (432 votes)
Ubuntu (any flavor, Kubuntu, Edubuntu, etc.)
29% (3220 votes)
Yellow Dog Linux
0% (10 votes)
Puppy Linux
2% (184 votes)
Linux Mint
9% (950 votes)
Other (let us know with a comment)
2% (245 votes)
Total votes: 11011

Comments

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You know what?

Anonymous's picture

Something is making me want to go back and try Sidux again... hmmmmm...

I know, right? All these

Anonymous's picture

I know, right?

All these Sidux comments are giving me an itch I may have to scratch...

Ditto

Anonymous's picture

Ditto

My Linux

Anonymous's picture

sidux. Fast install, fast boot, fast run, fast shutdown, great hardware detection, latest software, finest manual I have seen and great user forum.

I use sidux in all my machines.

Debian / sidux

Anonymous's picture

Debian Lenny (current stable release), for my file server (nfs) no gui installed.

sidux for my desktop and laptop installs.

sidux is a based on Debian sid providing a 'snapshot' release in live cd/dvd format - install to hard drive or usb providing options for either KDE or XFCE.

Freedom, power

Anonymous's picture

I use mostly Mandriva (desktop/laptop/server) and Debian (desktop/server). The former because all is so easy with it (well integrated, awesome control panel); the latter because it is stable, is easier to be made small, and with so much software available!
And installing new software is so easy, with either!

I contribute free software once in a while. But mostly, I contribute help to fellow Linux users, either on Internet, or “for real” around me.

Linux allows things you wouldn't dream of with another OS, or at an excessive price:

  • I do/did run my own servers for NNTP, SMTP, IMAP, POP, HTTP(s), FTP, SSH, LDAP…
  • With Linux, I was able to assemble a remote-controled media center PC before it was all the hype; being able to alter the source code for several programs was key to this achievement.
  • Using X11 remote display, a second-hand P166MMX laptop (32MB RAM) has acted as a second keybord+screen (dual seat, sort of) for my main PC, for ten years already!
  • Thanks to Linux and free software, a few volunteer parents and I were able to open a library in a school. All we had was donated hardware and books, and a little money for furniture and some more books.

Many other things were possible, thanks to freedom to use, and freedom to tinker.

Yves. (aka theYinYeti)

(feel free to alter text, as English is not my mother-tongue)

Parsix , wondering why parsix

Anonymous's picture

Parsix , wondering why parsix coz its easy to use for an intermediate user like me.
Frankly the speed i get while USB transfer is more than 20MB/sec . No other Distro gave me this speed moreover it is debian based easy to use with apt-get and synaptic.

Personally i like Slackware for its smooth running and givin absolute control to us!!
The only problem in Slackware is package intallation . We need to track everything we install even though slackpkg ,slapt-get,swaret are there ..But that is real LINUX and how its is shud be ...........

Slackware forever

Anonymous's picture

I was a Windows user and since 2007 I use Slackware. Why? Because it's simple, fast and give me full control over the system.

Critical usage and cost benefit analyses

Anonymous's picture

Linux is freakin' awesome!!!!

Thought I was going to say something profound eh?

I did.

pardus

Anonymous's picture

I use pardus. it is very elegant operating system
why not seen on the list?

Debian for the brain, KDE for the body.

Anonymous's picture

I like the ease of use and stability of Ubuntu, but I strongly favor KDE centric distributions as opposed to Gnome. If Kubuntu had the support that Ubuntu does, then that would be my OS of choice, but as it doesn't Mepis is favored to Kubuntu. But, any OS that had the support of Ubuntu would be the best, naturally. Mepis is good, Kubuntu is fine. Red Hat/Fedora, OpenSUSE, Mandriva are all good. But, I stand firmly behind Debian based systems.

Chakra linux

Anonymous's picture

I was using Kubuntu for a long time, but I tried Chakra linux alpha 5.
OHG, its incredibly fast!!. I've tried Opensuse, PCLinuxOS, Kubuntu, Mint Linux in the past. But I have to say, It is faster than all these distros and it even beats GNOME based distros too. I like this distro (though in alpha stage) very much and I'm staying with it.
Just give a try!!!
http://chakra-project.org/bbs/viewtopic.php?id=2454&p=1

It changed a life long Windows user

Anonymous's picture

well ive been using Windows for a long time, since windows 95, and I've been an I.T Professional for about 9 years, and through it all have always been turned off to linux. I didn't have to time to try anything new, i was just trying to keep up with the changes in windows. Just a month ago a new co-worker gave me a Linux Mint cd.
i tok it home and ran the live cd on one of my IBM laptops. been hooked ever since. i even changed my wifes laptop from XP to Mint..
bottom line is Linux just works.... im sold.

To the Webmistress

Anonymous's picture

There seems to be some problem with the site/pages. There seems to be no place for the author of the comment to identify him/herself.

Ubuntu

Anonymous's picture

I use Ubuntu because of its popularity. In the distant past I ran OS2, and was clearly "swimming against the tide" because of the scarcity of software and support for that platform. Both packaged (easy to install) software and support are readily available for Ubuntu, perhaps because of its popularity.

Thus, my choice of Ubuntu stems from my desire to minimize the "swimming against the tide" factor.

WOW! Some surprises here

Anonymous's picture

When reading these comments, its surprising how many people keep really old machines around. For what? I mean, 486s ...REALLY? I'm not saying the dumpster, but surly there is a school, church, club, whatever that could use all of that Blistering Box with 512mb of RAM; but people don't want to donate. That fact is what is NOT surprising about this poll.

The largest demographic to embrace Linux though, BY FAR, is the annoyingly loud "I JUST WANT SOMETHING FOR FREE NO MATTER IF IT WORKS WELL OR NOT" crowd. They contribute NOTHING to Linux; absolutely zilch in all areas except polls like this where they tend to be very vocal.

I, too, have conducted informal polls like this on various popular sites of social media, but only in the Linux clubs/groups at those sites. The supposed Linux-Lovers there told me crazy things; topics like:

-Why Linux is not ready for the desktop (since 2007, 2 Linux desktops have RULED testing; Consumer Reports has refused to publish the article)

-People don't want Linux because of Gaming issues (the Console market has obliterated computer gaming as a viable franchise; porting NetFlix, Last.FM, and instant/free Trial Games to their platforms)

-Its OK/fine if my distro doesn't configure my WiFi antenna properly (while desktops/towers may be still popular at the workplace, the laptops smaller and wireless footprint insured that it was gonna be the shape of things to come; and getting smaller)

When I told them to expect more and better from their distro, the moderator of one Linux forum told me that I was too harsh with my comments; he said, "if you want an OS that just works, then you need a Mac". They would rather join the Church of Steve Jobs and pay the Apple Tax than to contribute One Dollar to a Linux distro.

I see Freeloader Linux (The Discount OS) once again at the top of this leaderboard. You know, the One thats so often chastised, and had to be shamed for NOT contributing ANYTHING upstream?

Welcome the Freeloader Linux Lovers with open arms, just don't listen to them. Even the Techies that don't give money give Code; they contribute. A more accurate poll for the more social Linux Community would be: What Linux Distro Has Been So Good To You That You Gave Them Money For It? No more of this excuse of, "I support my XYZ distro by spreading the good word around" crap; you spread buggy XYZ Linux around to make yourself look like a Whiz at fixing computers and "teaching" Linux.

Whenever you hear of people wanting to convert the Windows Masses to Linux, beware of that Inferiority Complex wanting desperately to be the Popular Kid again. "Winning over" the Windows/Mac gangs won't make Linux any better; and Linux will never get better if people think that "spreading the word" of buggy Linux distros will suffice for support. Give to your favorite distro; either money or Code or both... BUT ENOUGH LIP SERVICE.

Therapy?.....

Anonymous's picture

I would seriously consider donating your money who can help you with your mental issues. Most Linux users do it for the love of their OS, their computers (old or not) and being self-sufficient in a way, no one can be in a proprietary OS. If you have money to donate, awesome. If your broke, a college kid, or just dont want too... Welcome to Linux, we take all kinds.

if 10% of Linux users gave $1 to their distro...

Anonymous's picture

... or give Code or actual labor. Once again, you TALK a good game; but your self-righteous diatribe doesn't keep the lights on at your favorite distro. You come to a commercial website with that? CLUE: Both Linux Journal 'site' and 'hard copy' have to have some revenue coming in (all this in the face of the leading demographic being tight-fisted Anal Retentive types).

I hurt your little feelings when I told you to stop making excuses and whining about "un-updated repo's" and "long-release cycles". Your slow-witted droll about Therapy only mocks the fact most distro leaders can't afford adequate health-care (Canonicals Trust Fund Baby notwithstanding). Talk about being broke? ...REALLY?

You confuse the contraction of You Are (you're) with the possessive YOUR, and spew the trite and colloquial "college kid" at me? You'd better get your degree. CLUE: it is a misconception that there are typical "kids" in college; most students of college-age are adults. College is typically a non-FREE endeavor and no place for children; thus, most of said students that enjoy Linux can actually afford to send $1 to the distro of their choice (yet sadly they do not). You see there... I inherently understood your point but nit-picked what you wrote for the sake of cynicism and clever sarcasm. Just like when you did it to me, it made me look stupid and my point appeared less valid.

It's people like you that want to keep this Linux 'Juggernaut' second-rate Geek Fodder for the Desperately Inclined; seemingly more cumbersome than the mediocre "default" OS and envious of our "Premium" Unix-cousin that only OPERATES on certain few overpriced hardware.

Look, there are volunteers out there contributing REAL labor-hours to the Linux cause. I'm not saying anything that the volunteer forum moderators don't say behind your backs: How much do you want for free? You know darn well that the people that complain the loudest to the distros are same ones that have contributed the least, if at all.

Wow! Some ANGER here.

Anonymous's picture

Wow dude. Take it down a few notches.

My developers showed me your post and we all agree that you just seem angry and could certainly do with formulating your point (points?) before posting.

I own a small business and we subscribe to RHEL. So yes I PAY for Linux. I have donated to the Ubuntu crowd as well. And I maintain a paid subscription to Linux Journal.

In my company we code in Mono and Java, depending on the needs of the customer. Most of our customers have a Windows network. Which I hope is no surprise to you.

OUtside of work I don't cram Linux down anyone's thoat. I prefer Ubuntu and Win7, actually.

Perhaps you gave someone money for your cause. Good on you. But to declare that everyone that uses a Linux distro must give is just over the top.

When a beggar FORCES people to give money he is known as a MUGGER. Not a good thing my friend.

Hope your anger does not affect your career. And don't go flying any airplanes around government buildings.

Enough of my "lip service". I'm off to work.

Cheers.

My family is Mint Linux

Anonymous's picture

...because it is a complete desktop.

...but the OP was right, he just didn't want to name names ...you have to admit though that the *buntu crowd is like the Used-Car Salesmen of the PC world: They want to put you in a CLUNKER under the selling-point of it being "CHEAP, DIRT CHEAP!"

What if I don't want a cheap car that barely works and just gets me from point A to B? What if I want a brand-new one with that New (Minty) Car smell?

In the PMP-sense: I don't want the crappy iPod Shuffle, I want the iPod Touch with all the Bells and Whistles that come with the ELITE product.

Our local LUG is all BROWN and people around here avoid them like they're AmWay Sales Reps ...they all wanna put *buntu on your PC so they can be your goto "Computer Guy". Creepy.

My family supports our Mint, because we expect it to work perfectly and it does everything that we ask of it to do. No one is MUGGING anybody; it's not that serious.

The OPs anecdote was CLASSIC, although it SHOULD read:

'"I support my U distros by spreading the good word around" crap; you spread buggy U Linux around to make yourself look like a Whiz at fixing computers and "teaching" Linux.'

CLASSIC!

That's funny.

Anonymous's picture

Your LUG wants to put Ubuntu on people's 'puters so they can be the "go to computer guy". I put PCLinuxOS on people's computers so they'll stop trying to use me as their go-to computer guy and just leave me alone. I guess that says it all...

Uh?

Anonymous's picture

Sorry, buddy, I must be dumb: I didn't understand your point...

BTW...

Anonymous's picture

...MAC is a Linux based OS. You do know that ...don't you?

mac is based on

rider's picture

Sorry but MAC is based on FreeBSD!

Do you know that ... don't you? :)

Ummmm

Anonymous's picture

Actually, Mac and Linux are two separate OS, both based on Unix. Linux still has a little GNU left in the code, as well. The OP is saying to stop making excuses for the 'popular' Linux distros that release early and often still with bugs. I, too, have met people in Linux forums who say they 'put up with' the second-rate stuff because 'Linux is free'. I also agree that this 'dumbing down' and 'lowered expectations' is what hurts the reputation of Linux as being difficult and for Nerds only.

There are at least two less-popular desktop distros on this list that have consistently tested over ALL desktop OS (not just Linux). Linux needs the support of people who expect their distros to be at that level, and be willing to give. There is nothing wrong with FREE, it's just some of us want something that works right 'out of the box', with no more excuses. Some of us put our money where our mouths are. Good luck to you.

WOW!...

Anonymous's picture

Who peed in your breakfast cereal today?! I'm speechless outside my initial comment. I mean -- REALLY?! Talk about LIP SERVICE!!

!!!!

Anonymous's picture

Your exclamation points made me smile!! ...especially the ones mixed with question marks!!! We need that level of PASSION!!! Have you donated yet?! Given blood even?!

i use slackware

Anonymous's picture

once i use ubuntu .. then i changed to slackware 13 .. i feel that i learn a lot about linux when i use slack .. i love thinkering .. i love getting my hands dirty .. above all i love learning linux ..

god i admire you

Anonymous's picture

i'm not even smart enough to navigate installing slackware

Which distros do I use?

Anonymous's picture

The radio buttons only allow you to select one distro, so I chose "Other". But I am constantly looking for new ones, in search of the "perfect distro". Some come close. I've given many a test drive for at least a couple weeks, and I'll try ones that aren't commonly known. Here's a partial list.

Mint, PCLOS, PC-OS, Zorin, Openmamba, Sabayon, CentOS, Scientific Linux, Urli 9.0, iloog, Excelixis, .....

I'm looking for excellent "out of the box" experience on older, as well as newer linux boxes. I want to be able to recommend distros to Windows converts, and leave them with a positive experience about Linux. I also want my 2 machines to be able to do everything I want them to. And I don't mind downloading apps to get my usual line-up in place. I want OO available, nVidia/ATI drivers available, codecs available, Adobe reader, Adobe flash, etc, and I would help a newbie get started with these too. I'm very impressed with the advancements Linux has made since the beginning of 2008. I just wish I had more time to test drive distros, and learn more of what the Linux world has to offer. Keep up the great work, all you programmers. You're doing the world a real service with mainly pride as your reward!

I'm sure you realize...

Anonymous's picture

... there's no one perfect OS that covers all bases/machines. With all you've tried, I recommend Ubuntu ( http://www.ubuntu.com/ ) for your modern main box. It has everything your looking for except Adobe Reader, which is replaced with the Gnome 'Evince Document Viewer' that can read all your .pdf files and will automatically open .pdf files downloaded/clicked-on via your browser just like Adobe reader does for Windows OS's. OO (O.pen O.ffice suite) is a MS Office replacement that's capable of reading and writing in MS's formats or the default .odf (Open Document Format) which is being used and excepted as the standard globally by governments as well as corporations and schools in many countries outside the US.

I'd also highly recommend Ubuntu for Windows converts. If Gnome desktop/window manager is a concern, (which is actually very intuitive and easy with an open mind), than try Kubuntu ( http://www.kubuntu.org/ ) which uses the KDE desktop/window manager and is reminiscent of the MS Windows look. The noticeable initial difference between the two is the start panel (taskbar to Windows users) is situated at the top of a Gnome desktop vs the bottom for the KDE desktop. The Gnome desktop is actually more intuitive if you think about it. Your generally at the top of your screen anyway with most menus and application windows, why not the start panel right there handy with the rest? When you set up a real furniture type desk, you don't put your utilities and accessories at the bottom where you need a workspace do you? Why do that with your computer desktop? The Gnome desktop manager makes perfect sense if you think about it. KDE's popularity design wise is because most people that use Windows want familiarity and that's what the KDE desktop manager offers at first glance IMHO. Either way, there's a Linux OS underneath both, and that's what's important here. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, as in "to each their own" ...or "whatever trips your trigger"!

For an older machine (or all your machines) I recommend Dream Linux ( http://www.dreamlinux.com.br/ ) which uses the xFce window manager (very user friendly). It's based on Debian Linux; has all the software needed for the average home user; a great, very active support group; and will run on anything from an Intel P3 CPU with 256MB of RAM and up. I have it installed on a Dell PC with 650Mhz P3 CPU, 512MB RAM, in a 5GB partition, duel booting with Windows XP on a 20GB hard drive.

As far as potential Windows converts go, tell them to download and burn to CD, then boot with the CD in the drive. For those who do not know how to download and burn an .iso file, burn various distro's to live-CD's, pass them out and let your friends boot them up in the CD drive when starting their computers to see what they're most comfortable with / like. You might be surprised! People in general are usually more savvy then given credit, and what you may not like they may fall in love with. PCLinuxOS ( http://pclinuxos.com/ ) is another good starter Linux OS for Windows users.. It's one I've found that is fairly intuitive and generally works out of the box on most everything I try it on, right along with the others mentioned above.

There are numerous good Linux OS's available. Tell your friends to try a few of the mainstream distributions via a live-CD. It won't install itself, their Windows PC's will never know it ran a Linux OS from the CD, and they can see if they like one of the many Linux OS offerings!

Like I said, "what you may not like, your friend(s) may love"! Try it! ;)

HTH!

Thanks, HTH.........

Anonymous's picture

I appreciated reading your comments. We seem to be following parallel paths to some degree, and drawing some similar conclusions. I haven't tried Dream Linux in quite a while, now. I'll go back and have a good look at the most recent version. Thanks for the tip! And I'm hoping that OO will continue down the same path now that it fits under the Oracle-Sun umbrella. If not, I'll do some closer looking into Oxygen Office at Sourceforge http://sourceforge.net/softwaremap/

An acquaintance of mine has taken older computers and set up a computer lab at a local church. He gives free lessons to anyone who isn't up to speed with computers. He's asked me to consider helping him and the group to explore Linux. So I've spent more time in the last few months, looking for "good" distros. He has at least a dozen machines, so I'd like to give him a dozen or so live CD's of all different distros. The machines all have Win XP on them, so it would be nice to give learners some insight into the Linux world. There is a world beyond the Redmond Empire. I still have to learn what hardware he has, and choose distros that will leave a positive first impression.

I also want to work toward establishing a Linux group within our local computer user's group. I have articles I want to write, demo's to run, and perhaps next fall, we'll have enough interested people to get going with a totally hands-on group who want to dive in and explore what Linux is all about.

Meanwhile, I continue to use Linux, and promote Linux, without pushing it at people. I lead by example.

Thanks again,
DLB, originator of "Which distros do I use?"

Ubuntu 9.10 64bit

Anonymous's picture

On two desktops at my home I use Ubuntu 9.10 64bit. I use Linux for about three years. Ubuntu is the most user friendly distribution. There is a lot of information about it on the Internet. It is possible to find almost any solution on forums and other sites.

Ubuntu for faster hardware

Anonymous's picture

I use Ubuntu on my desktop and Xubuntu on my laptop. Both are great and have amazing support from Connonical. Don't forget SliTaz though. I have it on my old 433 Mhz Celeron machine and it is fantastic. If you need a light-weight linux distro for old hardware, I would take this over Puppy Linux any day...

Ubuntu

Anonymous's picture

I think most distros are a lot more polished and user friendly than they were a few years ago, but I'm going to go with Ubuntu. I used to use Kubuntu from 6.06 to 8.04, but the transition from KDE 3 to KDE 4 hasn't been the smoothest. I gave regular Ubuntu 9.10 a spin and have been really impressed, since it's probably the first GNOME-based distro I've actually enjoyed.

There are practical reasons for going with Ubuntu as well. Canonical has done a great job getting it out there and making it known, as well as presenting it as an OS for every day users and not just networks and servers. And the fact that it's such a popular distro means there's lots of users posting how-tos and solving common problems.

My choices for runners up include PCLinuxOS and SuSE.

Ubuntu for servers; RHEL a disaster

Anonymous's picture

I've had nothing but utterly awful experiences over 10 years with RedHat EL, despite its high cost. I can see the point of Centos if you need RH without the cost, but it's just revolting to work with and the documentation is terrible too, so I'd never run either by choice. I run a mix of mostly Ubuntu with a few old Debian boxes and a sprinkling of RedHat on about 30 servers; plan is to migrate everything to Ubuntu. Debian combines great sysadmin friendliness with a terrible release policy; Ubuntu takes its great design and adds sanity.

PCLinuxOS since Big Daddy

Anonymous's picture

I love Live-CDs, but liked PCLOS Big Daddy so much that I felt the need to install it with a dual-boot of Windows at the time. By the time that PCLOS 2007 came out, I'd gotten a newer computer and erased the Windows partition to put the exclusive Linux desktop on. I haven't looked back since.

I no longer dual-booted.

The other people that I know that have PCLinuxOS tend to NOT be techie-types that you see at work, but more like the teenagers and housewives and early-adopter gadgety folk around here. Not the Computer Crowd, as much as the people with LOTS of cool toys. They don't dual-boot either.

When VirtualBox came to Synaptic repos years ago, I put my Windows XP install disk in there to test it out and made a video of Linux running Windows better than Windows --hehe.

I ended up taking the virtual Windows off though, because I never used it. PCLinuxOS rules.

Arch

Anonymous's picture

Reasons I use Arch:

1. Rolling Upgrade
2. Up to date packages
3. Awesome community/documentation
4. Great performance
5. Minimalist design
6. Simple from top to bottom
7. Teaches me as I go

Xubuntu

Anonymous's picture

I started my induction into Linux with Ubuntu 9.10 being installed on my old Dell Latitude C510/610 a few months ago. However due to slow performance I switched to Xubuntu 9.10 because it used less memory to run the operating system.

Ubuntu still the most popular Linux distro

Anonymous's picture

Ubuntu is the most easy linux for everyone.
If linux wants to touch the masses, Ubuntu is the way.

I've been in this a LONG TIME...

Anonymous's picture

I wouldn't say that "Ubuntu is the most easy linux for everyone". I def would agree that it is the one that has the catchy hard-to-forget name, in the HD-DVD vs Blue Ray vein. When you put that aspect with the fact that it is free, then you get the 'Worlds Most Popular Linux Distro' whether it's the easiest one or not.

Lots of people who don't particularly care about 'free' don't care about Ubuntu; esp the learning curve required to 'fix it'. These people, willing to pay for quality software and OS, are an admitted minority in the Linux camp but they DO exist.

I don't, however, think that these people give a fig about Linux 'touching the masses' and all the underlying tones of cloying that that phrase implies; they just want an easy-to-use and efficient/intuitive OS that works without hassle. Ubuntu is the most popular Linux one, but not the easiest Linux one.

Does "LONG TIME" by anonymous care to elaborate...

Anonymous's picture

...what he/she considers the easiest Linux OS to use is? You put Ubuntu Linux down as having a " learning curve to 'fix it' ". Is that not true with all OS's?

I'll say this much about fixing OS's! I started on MS products back in the days of DOS and have years of experience up through WinXP. Not only did I maintain my own personal machines, but was the go-to guy for family and many friends for fix-n-repair. I look back at very few pleasantries throughout that time frame and LOTS of crashes, downtime, aggravation waiting for MS or a third party developer to fix something, the phone constantly being rung by family and friends to fix this or that, ...not to mention my machine seemed to always be in a constant state of repair. I got very little done while MS OS's controlled and dictated everyones lives while we were all trying to find and experience the joy in computing! Until I started playing with Linux about 4 years ago, I assumed that the few hours of peace and joy we got combined with the days of hiccups and problems that were inherent with MS products and third party software was the norm!

So far, all but two family members have seen the light and converted 100% to Linux. Oh what a joy life is these days!!! My phone doesn't ring every couple hours by anyone asking for help to fix something on their computers; we all actually enjoy using our computers and getting things done without fear that it'll break or become infected and cause the loss of any or all of our data and files; and I don't have to avoid visits to said friends and family anymore out of fear I'll be working on their machines fixing them (or trying to) while the others are actually visiting!

Ummmm btw.... I've been running Linux for the last 4 years and my machine hasn't crashed or broken once (outside of my tinkering ...and even then it was a minor fix / reversal)! It stays up days on end at various times without a complaint. And my 76 year young mother with one year of previous computer experience on MS Windows XP took to Linux like a duck to water!

She's currently running Puppy Linux until I can finish building her next computer which will have Ubuntu Linux installed on it (by her request I might add). She doesn't get confused doing things as she always did on "that other OS". In fact, she rarely calls me asking about anything! And when she does, it's "What application can I use to do 'this'?" Not, ..."Why can't I do this with application 'X'? ...Well it says it can do this or that! ...How do I fix it? ...When will they fix it? ...Can you come by and fix it or make it do this?" ...yata yata yata!

Life with TUX the Linux mascot and Ubuntu Linux is a pleasure! And so is computing once again. I use various distro's myself, but Ubuntu is the work station OS on my main box because it's stable and simple enough for Windows users to feel right at home when they visit and ask to use my PC.

So I ask again, what Linux OS could be easier than Ubuntu Linux? ...especially for others who wish to convert from, and are familiar with, "that other OS".

I don't mean to be sarcastic or condescending. I simply am requesting your further opinion about what Linux OS you consider easier than Ubuntu to use/learn and why you think so!

Sir / Madam

Anonymous's picture

I don't take you as condescending or sarcastic, narcissistic or offending. Also, I had no intention of putting Ubuntu down to the more sensitive readers. I'm Ubuntu's biggest fan. I didn't mention any other distro because I didn't want to descend into the Flame War that the Linux infighting is known for. Also, there is more than one that immediately comes to mind.

By Long Time I mean that I started out with DOS, Macintosh in the mid 80s, Windows for Workgroups 3.1. etc. Nowadays I still fix PCs, but most of that is cleaning viruses/spyware off of ladies laptops for outrageous fees. Yes, like a lot of people on here, I make money off of Windows folly.

I'm going to date myself here by saying that my first Linux installs were with Helix/Ximian Gnome. I thought it was the greatest thing EVER; all I could gather off of 2600 baud modem. So to me, the name Ubuntu IS NOT synonymous with Linux, it's simply another desktop distro.

At my business I provide free broadband access for my workers, but I don't dictate what OS they use. We set up and maintain 3 major OS: Windows, Apple, and Linux. I admit that we have equal access to all of them. The Field Techs carry laptops and some prefer a desktop OS. None of those desktops are Ubuntu flavors.

When our regular customers get tired of giving us money every few months, they'll start to ask what we use. We give them desktop candidates based on how old their hardware is (speaking of Puppy Linux, I agree that people and orgs with older hardware love it).

We charge them a standard install fee, and encourage them to give any other Thank Yous to the distro directly. We get plenty call-back gigs on Ubuntu flavors, even though word-of-mouth precedes it as being synonymous with the Linux OS. After the initial install and set-up, we switch to a hourly-rate fee schedule for Call-Back gigs... and we are not cheap. We may get an additional two or three invoices off of Ubuntu-flavored installs, and some have requested that it be removed from their system.

There are at least 2 Linux desktop distros that we rarely, if ever get any Call-Back gigs on. When we make our Follow-Up phone calls, the people who take these two distros usually thank us (we've been sent pizza, balloons) and say they have consequently given money to the distro itself. Some have the nerve to ask us for wallpapers, MP3s, movies, startup/shutdown noises to augment their Linux; NEVER ANYTHING WE COULD MAKE ANOTHER DIME OFF OF. Basically, we LOSE customers to these two; so you can see why I'm reluctant to mention them here in this public forum.

I will say this about these 2 or 3 Linux desktop OS: their fanbase is rabid.

you are old

Anonymous's picture

When you said Helix Gnome, you took me back (over 10 years ago). I guess I'm old too.

well well well

Anonymous's picture

Give us a hint. I work in the Industry, too. I've found there's still money to be made from Ubuntu and Mandriva forms, but not from their 2 "perfect children".

Does one have a Blue Circle and the other a green, refreshing leaf?

Mostly Xubuntu, but...

Anonymous's picture

...although earlier releases of Xubuntu would seemingly load and run better than Ubuntu on some of our early hardware (P3 laptops eg), Xubu9.x does still use more memory than makes sense when you only have 256MB of RAM.
In the lightweight division we have used Puppy Linux a _lot_ of the time, installing it to HDD on half a dozen of the same GoBook P3 laptops and giving them to kids as gifts. At around $50 each (well used) this was affordable.

My own GoBook (they are waterproof and almost indestructible) has some 9 OSes on its drive, from the original Win 2K - reliable and unfussy, but slows to a crawl when loaded with the many necessary add-ons to protect it from the big bad Web.
The others are all Linux flavours, from the beautiful but quirky eLive via OzOs, OpenGeu, FluxBuntu, SliTaz cooking, Xubu 804 and of course Puppy.

I use Puppy all the time for diagnostics and maintenance of the many PCs that we meet. But we have not used it seriously as a 'production' environment at our home. That task goes to Xubuntu, which has usually shown a bit more zip than the Gnome flavour - and we like the basic compositor, when paired with a half-decent video card.

Our slightly-used AAO Netbook has Easy-Peasy on it, and continues to entertain with its oversize battery and good WiFi hardware.

Lately the new Lubuntu Alpha has run cleanly on some of our old hardware, but the front runner for lightweight champ in our cluster is Mint 8 Fluxbox CE.

M8FCE gives us moderate eye-candy together with a low RAM footprint - around 83MB with pseudo-transparency enabled, Conky running and three WM dockapps in the slit - wmMoonClock, wmIBAM, and wmButtons.

The latter provides 27 one-click launchers in a tiny dockapp so that one can have a wide choice of apps only one click away. IBAM is nice for battery status when conky is being obstructive (like last week), and MoonClock fits in well with the Lunar wallpaper.

Without the dockapps (not needed) our typical Xubuntu 9.x installations use around 200 MB of RAM immediately after booting.

So Mint Fluxbox CE is probably destined to replace Xubu804LTS on my wife's ancient Toshiba Centrino 1.5 with 512MB, since Fluxbox is (so far) running so well on the Compaq Presario Celeron 1.5 we just inherited.

Even so, the 4GB AMD 240 box (+nVidia 9800 GT) on which this is written has Xubu910 x64 on it, and it works really well. A windows fanboi mistook it for a customised Win7 install, on first glance! Poor deluded win-serf.

I probably have too much transparency enabled.....

Long term I'd like to get into configuring our own Debian systems, maybe have a play with Gentoo, via the gorgeous (but for us always a bit erratic) Sabayon.

Ben M

Thank you for that

Anonymous's picture

For recommending Mint 8 Fluxbox CE. I went and downloaded it and loved it. It will def be in my repertoire for older/legacy hardware --along with the venerable Puppy Linux, of course.

As far as GORGEOUS goes (def without the ERRATIC) word is out about the new 2010 beta PCLOS: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=linux_distro_fourway&...

adopting Ubuntu

Anonymous's picture

I have been increasingly interested in Linux since Vista arrived so ingloriously. I kept reading up on it, but could never find a distribution that was happy with my dial-up modem. I finally went to a local shop and told them I would buy a better internal modem if they would install Linux and make sure it worked. I suggested Mandriva; they installed Ubuntu, saying they had had better luck with it.

I have been very pleased with it; some of that it is simply escaping from Windows, I am sure...but I do find it a very straightforward system to use. I bought The Official Ubuntu Book, which I found much better than most guides.

So far, I am dual-booting on my desktop: I use accounting software that is incompatible with Linux, and I am not yet prepared to experiment with Wine. On the other hand, I am now considering installing Ubuntu on my laptop as well.

The only limitations I have encountered so far have been difficulties installing codecs for DVDs (this I believe is partly lack of experience, and partly lack of time to try), and a feeling that the XSane scanner program is very slow.

But I am having more fun learning than I ever was with Windows.

Mandriva, but only 2008.1

Anonymous's picture

I like KDE 3.x, and I'm sticking with it.

ubuntu mainly...

Anonymous's picture

using ubuntu 9.10 on 3 desktops + 2 laptops + 1 netbook. ...ubuntu 9.04 alongside suse 11.2 and vista64 ultimate on my main machine.

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