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Adarsh
Adarsh

Posted on • Updated on

Linux distro you are using for development?

Hi all I just wanted to know the different linux distros you are using for development and why you chose that.

Top comments (121)

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sudiukil profile image
Quentin Sonrel

You forgot:

  • Broken packages every week
  • Malwares in community repos

I've been using Arch Linux for a while but I ended up switching for something more "stable", rolling release is awesome but it can break to easy, I don't want that on a machine I use to code.

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elabftw profile image
eLabFTW

Broken packages is extremely rare.

The malware stuff was removed under an hour. Shit happens, what's important is how they deal with it. Also if you don't read the install files of an AUR package you're gonna have a bad time!

And no, arch doesn't break. I've used it for 10 years now and it broke less than Ubuntu that I was using before (why do you think I switched :p)

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sudiukil profile image
Quentin Sonrel • Edited on

Well I did use Arch for years and while it's true that I doesn't break THAT often, it still can happen (and it happened to me a few times). I'm not saying it's a bad distro, it's awesome, but if you want guaranteed stability (without taking time to double check things when you update), rolling release (on Arch or otherwise) is not the best idea.

Also, don't take my first post too seriously, it was a bit satirical :)

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mattmattv profile image
Matthieu Vion

If you find Arch too much "cutting edge", maybe you could give Manjaro a try ! You get Arch benefits but packages updates are much more tested, so less risks(:

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cro profile image
C. R. Oldham

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned antergos.com. Arch-based, installer is very nice, can support live CD mode.

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gchamon profile image
Gabriel Chamon Araujo

RIP antergos =,(

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lukad profile image
Luka Dornhecker

I’ve been using arch for about six years and I can only remember one broken package which was fixed in a couple of hours. In the meantime I had simply downgraded that package.

Arch has been very stable for me. I have a ~5 year old notebook still running its first arch installation. And it has seen many different desktop environments and a lot of AUR packages.

For me arch is the perfect dev distro.

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puritanic profile image
Darkø Tasevski • Edited on

Manjaro Deepin:

  • Based on Manjaro which is based on Archlinux
  • It has beautiful UI
  • It has a great community
  • Fast, and relatively stable
  • Rolling release kernel updates
  • Have access to ArchLinux package repository as well as Manjaro's

forum.manjaro.org/t/manjaro-deepin...

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manueltorrez profile image
Manuel Torrez

Manjaro Deepin is beautiful but I use KDE because of my computer

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kzagoris profile image
Konstantinos Zagoris

Linux Mint, the ubuntu we deserve

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Has a slick look. Is it maintained by Manjaro Team or another team?

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puritanic profile image
Darkø Tasevski

I think that it has some support from Manjaro team, but as this is community edition most of the support comes from the team that assembled it.

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thorstenhirsch profile image
Thorsten Hirsch

Depends on the technology stack.

  • EAI stack (MQ/IIB/ITX/Fuse/Perl/Java/C) - RedHat or CentOS (in a VM), because that's the runtime when it gets deployed and for this stack it's important that the dev platform resembles the prod platform, also some of the software is available in RPM only
  • Ruby-on-Rails stack - ArchLinux, that's my desktop OS, because I want a rolling release cycle... and my Ruby-on-Rails stack has always been directly on my desktop
  • everything Docker - Ubuntu (in a VM), because I was afraid to "taint" my desktop OS with docker, that just didn't feel right
  • Web development (React/Typescript for the most of it) - no preference, it seems to work well on all systems... well, at least on all Unix/Linux systems
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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

This is a good set up. You have clear separation of concerns when it comes to the kind of development you are doing. But curious though why Ubuntu for docker you could've gone with a much lighter alternative.

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thorstenhirsch profile image
Thorsten Hirsch

Right. Well, in general I prefer DEB over RPM, which leaves me with Ubuntu and Debian as officially supported docker (host) distributions. I guess the most important factor that made me decide in favour of Ubuntu is that my 1st docker project included 3rd party docker images based on Ubuntu (Ubuntu being the container OS). My backup plan was: with Ubuntu inside the container AND outside the container no matter how bad a problem with docker might get, I could always escape dockerization.

Later of course I used smaller distributions in the containers. But I'm still pretty happy with Ubuntu being the docker host system, so I've never switched.

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tgiddings profile image
Trevor Giddings

"Pop!_os"

I purchased a laptop from a company which also happens to be the makers of Pop!_os. Their laptops come with your choice of either Ubuntu or Pop!_os installed. I'd already tried Ubuntu before and Pop!_os is a derivative of Ubuntu, so I took it as an opportunity to try something new. I ended up really liking it. It's very straightforward to use, my existing knowledge transfers well, and almost all of the screen real-estate is used for programs.

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autonomousapps profile image
Tony Robalik

I'm also a System 76 user, although I haven't tried out Pop. Other than just hating the name, my Ubuntu setup "just works", and I'd rather spend my time working than experimenting with OS flavors.

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tgiddings profile image
Trevor Giddings

I do agree that it's a weird name. The main reason that I tried it was that I was expecting to need to install a new OS on it anyway and may as well try a new one before doing that.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

This is an OS I have not heard of. It seems interesting but with all those animations doesn't it become resource hungry?

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tgiddings profile image
Trevor Giddings

I don't know of any major animation involved with Pop!_os. Just bare-basic animations to prevent transitions from being jarring -- the same kinds I see on my Android phone. I've never noticed major resource use by this laptop unless I'm doing something strange like running multiple web servers, though it is a beefy laptop to begin with. On a normal day, the only processes which consume a meaningful amount of resources are Tracker and Firefox.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

It's good then. I am gonna give this a try. :)

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abhinav profile image
Abhinav Kumar

I'm using KDE neon.

  • I need the latest Plasma.
  • I don't want to manage my machine.
  • Official PPAs and .deb/.snap packages are readily available.
  • I want something based on Ubuntu as it's what used in production at work.
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carlosjs23 profile image
Carlos A. Escobar

I'm using KDE Neon for the same motives, it is just ubuntu with the last kde plasma.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Try CentOS in production trust me you will feel a difference in things and save you loads as it takes less resources to get the job done and also does it more efficiently than Ubuntu.

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moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I'm currently using Manjaro with i3 as a development machine at home because everything except the browser is done in a terminal emulator anyway. I have Debian on my personal servers and CentOS at work. I don't much like CentOS as a user system but it's ok on a server.

I run Debian and CentOS locally for Vagrant and Docker respectively.

That out the way, the reason I like Manjaro? I wanted to try Arch and have been happy enough with it not to want to hop distros. I used to use Debian unstable, and that worked for years without a hitch, but this is more up-to-the-minute and the AUR is really very good for finding anything I want.

Really, unless you're using something specific to that distro like a custom DE or want to run something non-free where the providers thing that the only distro in existence is Ubuntu, then there's not much difference. Stuff usually works and it's rarely more than a quick search away to find a solution to most problems.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Manjaro I heard is quite unstable and the team's support is often slow and sometimes the issues go overlooked is it true?

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moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I've been using it a few months and not seen any problems so far, but I don't really do anything that exciting with it, so...

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Will give this a try this is also topping the distrowatch's list nowadays.

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funkybob profile image
Curtis Maloney

Debian.

Stable for most servers, testing for my workstation.

I know a lot of people seem to like Ubuntu, but they still have yet to convince me they can really think like a server distro [whereas I've friends who've been bitten by how they don't]

Am planning to delve into Devuan now that they've had a couple of releases...

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

I have used Debian and CentOS for servers. Some how I feel CentOS is better than Debian when it comes to servers. CentOS tries to emulate some of RedHat capabilities too. You can give it a try and you are right about Ubuntu definitely not a choice for running in servers so much bloatware.

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funkybob profile image
Curtis Maloney

For enterprisey stuff, I might consider RHEL or SLES, but I find generally they ship versions if things too out of date for my needs.

CentOS doesn't merely emulate RHEL, it is RHEL. Basically, they rebuild the packages, with all the branding changed, and the restricted features taken out. Even before they were taken over by RedHat. Check Section 9 of the CentOS 7 release notes: wiki.centos.org/Manuals/ReleaseNot...

When I was building SANs, I used SLES, but mostly because of SuSE Studio.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

I am yet to try Arch Linux. I have been a hearing a lot of buzz about how cool it is. But for me as developer more than tools stability matters and I was introduced to Arch when it was unstable like broken releases bugs arising frequently. But since a lot of you are saying it's quite stable I am going to give it a try. :)

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gchamon profile image
Gabriel Chamon Araujo

If you are still interested, seeing that I am almost one year too late, try ArcoLinux. It has 3 "flavors" so to speak. The base is plug and play and have fun, just like antergos. The second is bare bones, almost like Vanilla Arch with some facilitated installation. The third is "build yourself". You define what you want in your OS and build the ISO.

It is a hands-on learning distro that also provides a functional lightweight environment with a good tutorial for working with each flavor

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sieunhando profile image
sieunhando

Try to use Manjaro bro. It's very awesome.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

That's also in my list since many people here are saying it's cool.

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defman profile image
Sergey Kislyakov

elementary OS 5.0 Juno (currently in beta).

I love the design and it's stable enough for me.

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ghost profile image
Ghost • Edited on

Running 04.01 on my dev workstation with three monitors, but running the Juno beta on my laptop. Love the clean simple interface. Elementary OS has never failed me. It's super stable!

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

But what about the package support for Elementary OS. I heard it isn't that great.

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codebrotha profile image
Tineyi Takawira

I think you heard wrong.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

The OS seems lightweight gonna give it a try and see how it fares for my personal project needs.

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codebrotha profile image
Tineyi Takawira

It's very lightweight with rock solid stability. I thoroughly enjoyed doing dev work on elementaryOS Loki. I had to move to a MacBook Pro for work, so I don't use it as much any more, but I would go back to it in a heartbeat.

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mdh34 profile image
Matt Harris

Elementary is based off Ubuntu, so it supports all the same PPA's and .debs that ubuntu can use

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aswathm78 profile image
Aswath KNM

Lubuntu

The UI might not look great. But one of the advantages compared to other debian based distros is it doesn't take much space or resources.

I'm using 17.10 but it still uses 250MB RAM and 2% processes after starting up

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Wow that's nice 250MB RAM gives a lot more memory for programs. This definitely wronged my notion that Ubuntu is slower compared to other distros.

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aswathm78 profile image
Aswath KNM

Many won't like it because of the UI, it may look like windows 95. But it gets the job done

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

At the end of the day looks doesn't matter as long as it can get the work done in a faster and better way.

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bgadrian profile image
Adrian B.G.

What: Me for many years, and all my dev friends that uses Linux for web development are using Ubuntu.

Why: Is the most popular/"friendly", has builtin packages for all the tools we need, I never had to compile something and I have only a few extra repositories added. Being popular I can find tutorials How to install for everything I need and what command lines I should type.

Context: I'm no fanboy, if I could afford I would have a Mac, so I'm always looking for the easiest/shortest/simplest way to do my job, OS is just a tool, a firewall between me and my finished projects.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

I agree with the statement "OS is just a tool". I feel macOS is kind of overrated for development. Any day I would rather use some other linux variant than macOS.

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bgadrian profile image
Adrian B.G.

I don't think it's overrated, it simply provides the best UX and developer tools. Windows and Linux only provides one of them. Overpriced yes.

You can actually quantify the value it adds, I will give you just a few examples.

In linux I have to spend many hours learning how to do simple UX stuff like tweaking my scroll speed, and I don't even have the courage to install the 3D drivers anymore because in 60% of cases in the last 7years I had to reinstall the system or spend a few days on fixing it.

People that say Linux is easy they already have years of experience and/or they are comfortable with using the CLI to do simple tasks like editing configs, compile stuff, which most of the people are not.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Thanks for this perspective :)

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k2t0f12d profile image
Bryan Baldwin

Gentoo

Software slotting makes it easy to handle multiple dev deps in parallel.

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michaeltd profile image
michaeltd

Came for this...

Also, awesome build environment out of the box, so you can "git clone" to your heart's desire!

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh • Edited on

Never tried Gentoo. Can you tell some more about the software slotting?

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k2t0f12d profile image
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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Thanks for this. :)

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hecterbonha profile image
Untung So Andryanto

I'm using Solus OS, it serve me right as web developer. everything works out of the box for my machine (Thinkpad E450). And most importantly it rolling release and stable enough at least for me.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh • Edited on

But isn't it kind of designed for home and general computing for the everyday user.

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hecterbonha profile image
Untung So Andryanto

yes, but it has the package needed for web development, and if you can't find it, it still linux on its core, you can always compile from source 🤣

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

As long as package support is there and compiling from source doesn't lead to system crashing it's fine ;)

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alchermd profile image
John Alcher

Linux Mint for the longest time, but currently on Ubuntu 18.04 since I need stable emoji support and Linux Mint 19 is still quite buggy on my machine.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Mint is like evergreen ground of Linux. It was, is and will be there always.

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alchermd profile image
John Alcher

Yup! It's the distro that just works. But sadly, LM19 is still unusable on one of my older machine. Can't even run vi without the terminal freezing :/ Hopefully the subsequent versions will work fine.

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marceloandrade profile image
Marcelo Andrade R.

Fedora with i3, most of the time I just need 2 windows: browser and terminal with tmux. I like the stability without having to be a power user on linux, I was thinking in a change to arch but tried it on a vm without luck, I think I'm getting older and just need that stuff works, I don't have the time or patience to deal with too technical things.

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sadarshannaiynar profile image
Adarsh

Haha I can understand. But with Fedora's bleeding edge features and lack of package support for new versions when it comes out how do you manage?

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rsclarke profile image
rsclarke

I have to agree with @marceloandrade , Fedora just works out of the box and has been my distribution of choice for years now. Younger me would distro-hop quite regularly, play with themes, window managers and configs. Now I'd rather focus on Getting Things Done than spend a good portion of my time setting up my environment. Perhaps Fedora just offers that environment I was searching for, though I still do install the odd extension to improve UX.

As for packages, perhaps this is personal choice just like the distribution. A 6 month cycle with fixes in between makes for a stable platform but also being new enough.

Typically I find myself not requiring the bleeding edge release, and given the popularity of per language package managers for development, well, you're not depending on the distribution.

Alternatively you could install from rawhide if you really need to, contact the maintainer to update if it fits within the update policy, or, repackage for the latest version using COPR yourself.

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marceloandrade profile image
Marcelo Andrade R.

I just need a few packages from Fedora, rest of my dev environments are dockerized so no issues.

After reading some of the answers I checked manjaro/i3 and looks really nice.

Let's team up together 🤝

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