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)
2% (219 votes)
8% (922 votes)
8% (879 votes)
4% (457 votes)
6% (626 votes)
2% (172 votes)
12% (1323 votes)
4% (491 votes)
Red Hat
1% (123 votes)
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


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Anonymous's picture

I have been on PCLinuxOS for about 5 years now... and I started with Linux in 1997 with RH5.x (.0? .2?), quickly went to Caldera, then Corel, then wandered aimlessly until I found Mandrake, and stayed with mandrake for a long time until I wasn't happy with their habit of always releasing a distro that forced me to blow away what I had tweaked and figured out (damned thing had some new system-breaking quirk in every release!). When they went corporate, I had enough and started hopping again. Then I found PCLinuxOS, and it's been home ever since. It's on my workstation, home computer, and has graced the computers of all my girlfriends ever since I discovered it because I don't want to be the computer guy. I quit doing that for a living a long time ago because it was too much stress for no reason (Windows designed to self destruct is not a valid reason for me to be upset and stressed all the time). I run my business on it, and I use it because it just works, is very stable, is intuitive and gets out of my way. I have long wondered why anyone would want to use Ubuntu, and if Mandriva didn't use that accursed URPMI, I might be using them still. But for my money (and I donate at least $80 a year), it's always PCLinuxOS.

My distro of choice is

Anonymous's picture

My distro of choice is openSUSE. Nothing beats it IMHO. Its KDE implementation is perfect and zypper is an extremely powerful package manager which uses a SAT solver to solve dependencies. Plus I don't need to edit config files manually because I have YaST which is a central system config tool which has a GTK/QT GUI and an ncurses interface so it is perfect for command line servers as well. I have tried other distros but I have always come back to openSUSE. Fedora would be my second choice.

Which Linux distribution do you use most frequently?

Debian Penguin's picture

My favourite is Linux Mint Debian Edition

Using the Debian repositories but as near as easy to install than Linux Mint 9 is a complete and a logical move for those who want the robustness and respect of Debian and continue learning when they are ready to delve deeper on a Linux Distro.

I am using it right now with KDE 4.45 on an Acer Aspire One netbook, it went nice on my hardware and it is very stable and predictable.

Music Search Engine

DaftDomain's picture

Ubuntu all the way!

Linux is my home office.

Rene's picture

A Linux-based system is a modular Unix-like operating system. It derives much of its basic design from principles established in Unix during the 1970s and 1980s. Such a system uses a monolithic kernel, the Linux kernel, which handles process control, networking, and peripheral and file system access. Device drivers are either integrated directly with the kernel or added as modules loaded while the system is running.

Separate projects that interface with the kernel provide much of the system's higher-level functionality. The GNU userland is an important part of most Linux-based systems, providing the most common implementation of the C library, a popular shell, and many of the common Unix tools which carry out many basic operating system tasks. The graphical user interface (or GUI) used by most Linux systems is built on top of an implementation of the X Window System. auto

Quite honestly, for the last

Anonymous's picture

Quite honestly, for the last year or so, I have been addicted to Debian. Yes, Debian has many problems, but if you use Linux to learn about your system, Debian helps with that. Quite frankly, a windows user moving to Linux should go in this order: Ubuntu/Mint>Debian>Gentoo>LFS. That is, of course if they want to reach LFS :)

However, as you can see, I am currently looking for a new distribution to try. ;) I was going to give Gentoo a try, but I think I will save that for when I have more time to devote to my system.

Just for the record I was an

jim karter's picture

Just for the record I was an ubuntu user up till Mint 9 came out, but because I found that with ubuntu sometimes the occasional update, even from Canonical would cause some error of sorts this just lead to irritation and annoyance.

jeux pas cher

jeux import uk's picture

I love it


FROST's picture



FROST's picture


Linux Mint Debian Edition

Debian Penguin's picture

Being a computer literate person from 1979, I am on the Linux world from 2008 and after trying Ubuntu, then openSuSE I discovered Linux Mint 9 Isadora as someone said to me was easy to install and complete.

It felt more snappy than Ubuntu Lucid Lynx and recognised all my hardware.

Last weekend I read about a Debian based Linux Mint (a more conservative approach being more strict to Debian than Ubuntu) but is less easy to install. I give it a try on two netbooks that I have and the installation went a bit harder as it showed me more options and gives you more info but for me that was okay. Then I discovered that it felt lighter and faster but the only thing that did not worked was hibernation. It created the swap file but for some reason it performs a shutdown instead.

I liked it so much because I always wanted to install Debian but the procedure was somehow difficult as I did not have a Ethernet connection. But with Linux Mint DE it found my wireless card and connect from the live install.

I recommend it because it never showed any bugs or hangs. It went solid and stable.

One more thing I not favour any distro over others. Only talk from experience and the guys who have time to teach me how to install Linux.

First of all is important to know the real use of the computer and not just learning about how to use it better but with Linux you could have both ways.

I can say something about Linux is that I will never going back to the proprietary operating systems.

I just recently started using

Noorani's picture

I just recently started using Ubuntu Jaunty and I really liked the experience especially with Compiz enabled. It is so much more fun to work with when Compiz is enabled. Anyway I have downloaded and used other distros like Fedora, PCLinuxOS, openSUSE and Puppy Linux (most of them as live CD's). But I have to say that of all of them I prefer to use Ubuntu as I find it quite user-friendly and also because it was the first Linux I ever used


shiny666's picture

I have experimented some with a few distros. Namely, Linux distros: {Debian, Fedora, OpenSUSE, Gentoo}

With Gentoo, a great degree of control/tunability is/was present, but there is some need for technical knowledge and/or patience that some distros don't neccessarily demand. On the upside, dependency resolution is awesome, and portability, and the ability to really control what software gets installed to a greater extent, even with respect to kde packages (to some limited extent) is fantastic.

With OpenSUSE, I noticed a binary distro with vast repositories, overal user-friendliness, ease of install, great localization (note that there are a variety of distros that do offer this), and overall a comfortable and similar feel, having used windows for [far too long] a time.

Debian stood out as a basically robust and well-supported distro, had a great selection of software, and dependency resolution wasn't too bad. (fairly decent compared to most binary distros I've seen)

Fedora was basically usable, seemed to have a great installer, but nothing really impressed me about Fedora while I was using it.

My preference as of now is gentoo (not funtoo or sabayon or some other derivative), but i'm torn between debian and opensuse for binary distros as both have a decent feature set and software repository. Last time I tried "SUSE" it was a little sluggish, but not intolerable. Note that it had a great configuration interface as well. Debian however, does seem well-supported and robust enough that I'm still considering it a likely choice for some uses.

Distro I use

mat's picture

ylmf is not the most used as I can see by your votes, how ever I have used most listed above.As it stands I have used 20+ distros and so far I have had he least problems with ylmf.Even though it looks like windows xp it has several things I like and it is user friendly.It uses Ubuntu 10.04 as a base but they have made some improvements. Yes it is a chinese language OS English is available from the install on the live cd.If you are switching from windows to linux this distro may make you feel more at home.If you are not sure about some of the other choices listed here I will say this to perhaps make your choice easier.You first have to know that if you think wine is going to function with windows apps(ya sure) it's more of a pain in the vertical smile then to use the free stuff available for linux. There are many distros to choose from but you have to find the one you like the best and if you don't mind to format the hard drive a couple of times try out different ones.

Sidux is the fastest

Pooja's picture

I have used Ubuntu, Sidux, PClinuxOS and OpenSuse recently. I like my computer to be as fast as possible so I prefer Sidux to all the others. The manual is fantastic and has all the resources you'll need. The KDE environment looks gorgeous and Sidux is lightning fast. Though I struggled with installing software initially, I had a great deal of help in the Sidux IRC chat forum. Those guys are fantastic..they are willing to help you out with whatever problem you face on Sidux. I find Ubuntu and OpenSuse extremely slow compared to Sidux. And PClinuxOS like a poorer version of Ubuntu. Of course they are anyday better than any windows version including Windows 7 (which is a pain to use). But Sidux is by far the best. And the full version comes loaded with all the applications you'll ever need.

Mint 9

Geeza's picture

Linux Mint 9 I have to say is the best distro I have used, simply put every thing works nicely out the box, no need to mess about installing the essentials like flash, media codecs, java etc... they are all ready there! Well done Mint for making Ubuntu a better product.

Just for the record I was an ubuntu user up till Mint 9 came out, but because I found that with ubuntu sometimes the occasional update, even from Canonical would cause some error of sorts this just lead to irritation and annoyance.

Linux Mint 9 is my choice for anyone that simply just wants to get on with things without messing about configuring this and that to get something to work.

Not convinced download Mint 9 Isadora and experience the difference - :)


Agam Jain's picture

I prefer openSUSE because of its professionalism, security enhanced features and a wide softwrae repository.

Arch Linux

Music SE's picture

I prefer Arch Linux. What I like most about it that it is very simple and useful. Besides, it has been improved recently.

best linux freqv. used

bibu's picture

The best fast stable linux in my opinion...after trying
almoust all distros....is Antix.

best linux freqv. used

bibu's picture

The best fast stable linux in my opinion...after trying
almoust all distros....is Altix.

best linux freqv. used

bibu's picture

sorry for mistake...is Antix Linux.

Gave up windows vista for ubuntu

anandcct's picture

I have used UNIX for development and Microsoft Windows for business desktop for long many years.

I did experiment with Linux few times many years back and had given up on it because of limited hardware compatibility and lack of device drivers for popular peripherals.

Recently something made me try ubuntu 10.04. I was extremely impressed. Install was a breeze. Ubuntu automatically detected all the hardware on my fairly high-end desktop. Everything works without any additional installation. It is fast, stable and provides enormous amount of software package options.

Since then I have tried many linux distros and still find ubuntu the best. I built a LFS (linux from scratch) system using ubuntu. I have installed and explored a number of packages. Never I had to reboot or reload because of bugs.

I almost never boot into windows vista partition now. Vista was very frustrating anyway and ubuntu is so wonderful. My heart goes out to all those open source developers who have brought linux to where it is today.

I use NimbleX

Anonymous's picture

In all my everyday activities I use NimbleX Linux.
It's a fairly small and unknown distro but for me it's by far the best distro out there. Everything just works on my computer, it's virtually unbreakable and it's lighting fast. If you need things like a package management and some of the other conventional features then it's not for you and there is a bit of a learning curve if you want to get the most out of it but it's still worth a try.

I would like to vote for Ubuntu

zahidul Islam's picture

I voted for Ubuntu, because it's easy to manage. It's most user
and computer friendly. It's easy to run in any kind of platform
or any kind of pc/laptop.
I had try few others different Linux, but they are not that easy
to use. We need to wait another couple of years, getting a handy
and useful home using Linux O/S. Some of them are really works fine
these days. Like Ubuntu, Fedora is my best choice at this time.
But Ubuntu is the most useful I found in last few years, only few
small issue with some useful software in our daily use.
In bottom line about Ubuntu is I might recommend for any user who is
looking for a useful Linux destro.


David McCann's picture

I've used Fedora since version 1, but this summer I'll be switching to CentOS version 6: the endless changes in Fedora are just too much bother. I've tried other things, but I'm underwhelmed by them.

The Anaconda installer is intuitive (unlike the Debian one) and effective. It enables me to do a custom installation of what I need rather than cluttering the drive and menu with games and social networking stuff (like Ubuntu). The repositories have all the software I need (try installing Evolution on Slackware), and Yum does a good job of accessing them. And CentOS is Gnome based: the stand-alone window managers lack facilities, while KDE and its utilities are just too bloated and ugly.


iharob's picture

It's just that no distro fits exactly my needs, i read the LFS book, learned a lot of stuff about how a GNU/Linux distribution works, and decided to build my own distro with it's very own simple bash script based package manager, it is very comfortable to work this way, but if i had no linux skills at all i would use ubuntu, although it has expirienced many changes lately tha make it feel like windows or mac, im not saying they are bad changes, in fact i beleive it was necessary to perform such a turn for end users to feek encouraged to use it, if a little bit more skills on GNU/Linux slackware or Arch are good choises, for those who want maximum optimization and almost a completely custom system gentoo is the right choise. sorry for this crappy english :)

Linux OS choice is sidux

vinur's picture

Many years of computer use, many flavors of Linux tried, found Debian to be powerful, lived in it for a few years... and then tried sidux. It is a type of distribution tree with its roots in the good earth of Debian and its leaves in Valhalla.

Very powerful if you have an idea of what you want to do.

sidux is clarity if not depending on ultimate security or enterprise like stability of a changeless environment.

I learn fast and can adapt to the new. I like the frontier.

I think it is the one if you like the cutting edge that actually works in an operational platform with a rolling release growth curve.

Fedora, although there can be pain

orf's picture

I use fedora on the desktop because I got used to RPMs early on with Red Hat, and I like having the latest greatest software. The regular updates are only a minor annoyance; however I am very much a Linux geek and can (usually) fix problems that come up; however, in my college computer meteorology lab that I help maintain, which has 25 computers, we are switching over from fedora to CentOS for something more stable even if it is slightly old looking. So, it really depends on the application. I run Voyage (stripped down Debian) on my router for instance.

A vote for "other."

EasyEd's picture

Foresight Linux Gnome. Everything works straight out of box. It's a rolling distro one could set and forget. It's responsive, and offers something for everyone. Of the more popular operating systemmes, I would favour Zenwalk because it's fast and stable.

Foresight stellar reviews

Anonymous's picture

I'd read some impressive 'real-user reviews' on Foresight before, but couldn't get a Live-CD at the time to check it out. I'll be going back to check it out again. Thanks.

no live-cd

TForsman's picture

Im sorry to tell you that there wont be any live cd.
When we had it before, it was only 1-3% that actually downloaded the live iso.

Starting out with Zenwalk

Anonymous's picture

Starting out with Zenwalk (based on Slackware).

The Bottom Line

Anonymous's picture

I work for a living and I don't donate all that money so that I can have to 'learn Linux' or look up hardware issues on the internet.

I may be a Computer Geek, but I don't have time to show my workers how to type commands into a CLI or terminal window. Any OS for the Desktop needs to be intuitive in its functioning and cost-effective in the ledger. I need for my people to not have to worry about the OS doing it's job, so that they can do theirs.

I need vast and deep repositories that remind me that this is 2010 and the apps are simply amazing. Yeah, I'd throw MY money at that.

Thank you PCLinuxOS, for being a Desktop Business Solution worth paying for. Let's see Redmond or Cuppertino come up with a better answer? No, I didn't think so.

you mean Cupertino. And what

Anonymous's picture

you mean Cupertino. And what is so great about PCLinuxOS that you feel is worth paying for? And how much paying, exactly?

glad you asked

Anonymous's picture

What makes PCLOS worth paying for is its uncanny end-user-friendliness and intuitive nature that doesn't require me to "retrain" my staff for the Linux desktop; the OS itself becomes an afterthought behind the (amazing) apps that we use in our business. I get a stable and reliable product from Texstar (who didn't force KDE4 on anybody; it had to be requested).

The default OS on the machines was Windows product. This was not a problem, as the OEM cost was built into it. The internet/email/IM is required at my business for communication purposes. The problem occurred from the lost production hours of keeping the Windows product secure, healthy, and virus free; not just the licensure. Apple/Mac or OS-X, you say?

I was introduced to PCLOS by a DBA friend who was showing me Parallels running WinXP on his MacBook. I was quite impressed; --that is until he showed me a laptop with PCLinuxOS running WinXP in VirtualBox. He told me that his employer has gotten "ripped off by the Apple Tax" by buying him the MacBook for work.

Previously, I had never gotten the Linux distros to accommodate my multimedia interests "right out of the box" before he showed me PCLOS. It was either "search here for this codec" or "put that into the Command Line" excuses (I don't need that from a DESKTOP).

When I'd tried to install the popular Brown distro (before I got PCLOS) and called on the assigned IRC helper for hardware/install solutions, she didn't help me at all but she told how much she hated something called KDE (I didn't know what KDE was at the time).

The Bottom Line is that using PCLOS keeps my cost down at work. PCLinuxOS keeps my family and friends happy, too --and I don't want to be everybodys bearded "Computer Guy" either; I can't tell you how to fix your damn computer and I don't want to. PCLOS has afforded me a laziness usually reserved for far richer businessmen than I. All I know to help people with their PC is to have them look at mine and "check out this LiveCD".

In my very limited PC skills, I rarely have had to ask for any support for this OS or distro; thats is what I have always liked about it enough to donate my money. I've come across more Windows boxes since the switch, but we just pass on them because we can't go back now (we're too spoiled to go back).

As far as PRODUCT is concerned, I feel that PCLOS is a stronger PRODUCT for my business and personal needs than Windows 7 or OS-X. I charge my donations to PCLOS by credit card using Google Checkout. I usually base the amount on a per-machine installation basis, including the machines of my immediate family. Thus, I'm given PASS server access and I'm also a member of PCLOS forums (where I occasionally submit pretty desktop screenshots to be included in the YouTube monthly PCLOS slideshows).

PCLOS worth every dollar of our donations

Anonymous's picture

This family agrees 100% with you. Usually in May, we'll send in our annual PCLOS donation based on a per-machine installation, as well. When we heard that Tex was having some personal problems, we sent in even more than our usual ammount.
The Community needs to step up our financial support of our favorite distros. We figured this out when the founder of Damn Small Linux stated, "Linux would be the #1 OS in the world if only 10% of the people that have ever loved a Live-CD would send just $1 to their favorite distro!".
Go ahead; do the math in your head. 'Nuff said.

most used flavor of tux

datu's picture

hi there, i've only been a linux user for 5 years and still learning, firts one i used was fedora and rhel and then tried mandriva, linux mint, DSL, pclos, centos and ubuntu......for the server side of things i still prefer to use rhel and CentOs (and it keeps me with my terminal skills IMHO) for the rest i have yet to fully delve but currently i'm using Ubuntu for my lappi and netbook because it simply just works out-of-the box with minimal configuration for ubuntu it's just a sudo-apt away but for some reason keep coming back to pclos man they should it to fusion r something because of how telstar combined the ease of aptitude the candy crisp of mandrake the backbone rpm's of rhel all brought together with the twist that only telstar can conjure (IMHO). all thesame linux is linux underhood its just matter of how much time and skills are you willing to spend on it.... simply wonderfull......kudos!

throw money at it

jay daniels's picture

When you throw a lot of money at a problem, you end up with Ubuntu at the top and SUSE a good second.

I tried Mint, but I like the latest Ubuntu because it is more current and since everyone uses it, many many tutorials online and easy to follow. Free online support, Ubuntu wins hands down.

Haven't tried SUSE in years, mainly because I prefer the Gnome look and KDE is the default in SUSE last time I checked.

Tried Slackware but it's missing Automatic UPDATES!!! A big problem with Slackware. Also, Ubuntu seems to run much faster than Slackware on my notebook. Slackware is just that, slack & slow. Slackware is so 90's.

However, I'm not crazy about everyone switching to Upstart. I like text files for configuration and startup. My xorg.conf is blank, wtf? One of the reasons I switched from Windows to Linux was because the simplicity of editing config files and creating initd startup files was very easy. Now they have all throwed another wrench into the machine. I don't think Linux users adapt to change very well - for instance, why switch to ext4 when ext3 was working fine?

YOUR money?

Anonymous's picture

Are you saying that Ubuntu and OPENSuse are so wonderful that YOU threw YOUR money at them? I believe that would make you the exception for those distros.


CrashMaster's picture

I've tried all of the main distros and keep coming back to the KDE version of PCLinuxOS. The betas of 2010 PCLinuxOS are fantastic and I have high hopes that this release will be as spectacular as 2007 was at the time.

PCLinuxOS a friendly distro

Crow's picture

I tried Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Mandrake/Mandriva and many others, all have their good and not so good features, I stay with PCLinuxOS because of it's simplicity, stability, good repository and excellent community where you can get support in a friendly way.


Anonymous's picture

PCLinuxOS is my system of choice. The 2010 release has been stable through development and the final release is approaching. What's better than a stable rolling release? PCLinuxOS has real long term support and the new artwork is an added bonus.I like everything about this release

The Once And Future King

Anonymous's picture

Have you seen the the benchmarks from just the beta version of the upcoming PCLOS 2010 release? [ http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=linux_distro_fourway&... ] Texstar and the gang are set to release a monster onto an unsuspecting public. I can't hardly wait.

I started with LiveCd

Anonymous's picture

I started with LiveCd knoppix. Tried but soon quit with Suse. Love apt-get and now with Ubuntu (since 2004)... What next?!


Anonymous's picture

I started with Suse:slow, prefer debian packge system.
Then Soho linux, very basic.
Mepis:love Mepis, first debian based system I used, but I prefer Gnome.
Xandros:Great, but tied to microsoft.
ubuntu:Great, Everything Just works, left because hard to repair, tired of large upgrading.
PclinuxOs:nice but nothing really new, ubuntu is better.
Debian:surprised about slow poor installation method, verious other problems.
I tried other linuxes but I could not get away from PuppyLinux, when the otheres would break, I used puppy to fix them, it is aways reliable, ready to go, Puppy has the right mix of practically no installion needed, no huge
upgrades all the time, now even with delta upgrading! Small, unbloated, fast, install on anything,relatively fast boot up, elegent backend system, simple programing, best application mix of all the other distros,
I had the Vic20,C64,C128, it is a shame that today with all the memory,and processor speed, that todays Systems are not that much better than the Vic20, because of the software bloat and too many background processes that aren't really doing anything but waisting cpu cycles.

"Puppy just gives you what you need."

Trolling for a flame war

Anonymous's picture

See, you could have just put that last sentence of Puppy praise (excellent system) in there and left the verbose insults for everything else out. That other rambling just pisses people off.

Didn't piss ME off. Most

Anonymous's picture

Didn't piss ME off. Most intelligent, open-minded people like to know the reasons WHY someone likes or dislikes something. It's VERY helpful when trying to make an INFORMED decision. MUCH better than simply saying "XXXX is Great!"

Slax Linux

linux blog's picture

I was using Slax (small and fast distro, easily bootable from USB) more than one year and I think it's very interesting option you should consider :)

PCLinuxOS and Linux Mint

Anonymous's picture

So damn good that you'll actually Donate that money (gladly and with a giant grin on your face).

I tried...

Anonymous's picture

I tried Unity on some extra machines, but couldn't get the LiveCD/Installs to work. I use PCLinuxOS on all other installs (with no dual-boot BS).

I really wish those guys at Unity could forgive PCLOS and come back.