Choosing the Right Linux Distribution

Ever since the first Linux distributions appeared, people have been having a hard time trying to choose the "right one" to use.

Many people end up asking "Which distribution should I use?" on the web, only to receive heaps of different suggestions (usually just the distributions that the posters like), a few arguments, and inevitably, the RPM vs DEB debate.

The problem is, that even after you filter out the posts to just the suggestions of distributions, you will find that you end up with just a big list of distributions, with usually only a comment like "This is good" to guide you in your choice.

This is a really bad way to choose a distribution, since you have no real advice on WHY you should choose distribution X over distribution Y. This article aims to give you the advice you need to choose the distribution that best suits you.


One of the key things in choosing a distribution is what you are using it for. Most uses fall into one of the 3 categories below:

  • Desktop usage.
  • Desktop and Server usage.
  • Server usage.
"Desktop usage" or "desktop distribution" is a very commonly used term to describe a Linux distribution which provides a GUI and is suitable for usage on desktop or laptop computers.


If you want a desktop distribution, some of the main requirements are:
  • Ease of adjusting settings - in the case of laptops, easy network changing is important.
  • Age of the software (you want the programs to be fairly recent)
  • Range of GUI applications.


If you are looking for a server distribution, you want to look for:
  • Software api stability - do updates ever change the way the distribution works mid-release?
  • Software life - how long will it get updates?
  • Security - servers are often open to the public - it needs to be very well secured.
Do you have anything to share? Please post them in the comments below.

Article Source - reallylinux.com