Let's talk about Linux

Paula on March 07, 2020

I wanted to share this with you guys. What do you love the most about Linux and freedom of the software? [Read Full]
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I absolutely love Linux! The fact that there is a distro for every use case is amazing. If there isn't an option out there, you can create it yourself. Linux to me puts the "personal" back into PC. I own my hardware and I decide what software I want I'm there. I have full control over my workflow and it's not forced into me like how I personally experienced Windows.

I'm not putting Windows down though. If it works for you and it does what you need, use it! Use the right tools for the job and for me that happens to be a variety of Linux distros!

Here are my favorites:

  • Ubuntu (going strong for 4 years)
  • Peppermint OS (wow it makes me productive)
  • EndeavourOS (makes the first experience with Arch very light hearted)

The great thing about Linux, and this is largely why it got so popular in the first place, is its support from the hardware industry. Another great thing is ofcourse the kernel itself. However, compared to other modern-day Unix-like kernels (ie. the BSDs -- OpenBSD, NetBSD, FreeBSD, MacOS X etc.), it's mediocre at best.

What's definitely not great about Linux though, is its distributions. What ought to have been one complete OS with one competent leadership and one coherent brand, is instead split into thousands of distributions with varying degrees of quality, with the overwhelming majority all including unnecessary and overly complicated stuff by default, such as systemd, bash, OpenSSL, or iptables/nftables.

In the words of a great friend of mine:

Choose OpenBSD for your Unix needs. OpenBSD -- the world's simplest and most secure Unix-like OS. Creator of the world's most used SSH implementation OpenSSH, the world's most elegant firewall PF, and the world's most elegant mail server OpenSMTPD. OpenBSD -- the cleanest kernel, the cleanest userland and the cleanest configuration syntax.


That's a very interesting take! I'll have a look and see what it's like, thank you for that comment!


Jij lijkt echt op iemand die ik ken, ben je familie van Andries?


Wat een toeval haha ik heb met hem gewerkt een jaar geleden! jullie lijken echt op elkaar. Leuk om te weten dat er een dev in de familie zit!

Haha dat hoor ik vaker inderdaad! Ik heb hem ook al met het Linux virus aangestoken 😅

Lekker bezig, Linux for the win!


I use arch btw (I don't, I'm just always looking for opportunity to say this though).

I think Pop_OS! is dope


yeah it's not just customized ubuntu... it's optimised one🤘


The best part of Linux according to me is the alternatives are so much that it literally spoils you :P

Don't want to use KDE, you might like Gnome, Cinnamon or XFCE. Text Editors, loads of them! The amount of choice that we have and the customizability that it provides is truly amazing.

Another point that I think is great is the development experience that Linux provides. Bash/Zsh is an absolute beast and the utility it provides is awesome! Windows just launced a new CMD with features that were in Linux 1 years ago. The forceful updates and the baggage that comes with Windows is completely gone with Linux. I use a rolling release distro and the only thing that I have to do to update my system is sudo pacman -Syyu.

Also another advantage is building for CI. Building native modules and being able to test them is simply easy and you can match the CI environment as you're using the same native modules that the CI server uses i.e. Linux :)


Has anyone here considered installing a linux distro on their aging parents' computers to protect them from the exploit-happy Windows environment?

I was thinking about this recently for my dad who keeps getting "hacked" and only really uses his PC for a lightweight gaming client so he can play backgammon online (and an additional add-on utility that analyzes his gameplay).

He absolutely won't use anything that requires learning something new, but I could probably simulate his Windows experience with the gaming app in Wine, if the rest of the OS had a Windows-like interface.

What do y'all think?


I did this with TrueOS (a spinoff of FreeBSD). Originally I wanted to use Trident because I'd heard it was a fork of TrueOS which was a fork of PC-BSD which was basically like FreeBSD but meant for desktop users. But when I found out Trident had moved to Void Linux as a base I ended up not using that because I didn't know as much about Linux (though in retrospect I'm not sure about that decision because it might've been a good opportunity to expand my horizons) and so I installed TrueOS, found out the hard way that its install guide is millenia out of date and it isn't a desktop-focused OS anymore, more a spinoff of FreeBSD with mild architectural changes. Still, I ended up getting the TrueOS desktop working and friendly to them with XFCE, Wine, and cups (my dad has an addiction to printing :)).


LinuxMint is supposedly Windows like. It could be what your dad needs.


If I had to pick one feature, compared to Windows: the fact that you can (and should) install every software you want from package repositories, providing a unified update for the entire system; vs each soft having to phone home to check for updates and bother you with popups, or implementing autoupdating by themselves, or just let users down and they never update after the initial install, becoming vulnerable as security bugs are fixed in newer versions.
Things might have changed with the Windows Store and/or NuGet, but I'd bet it's still true for many Windows users, including tech-savvy ones.


I recently discovered the "scoop" package manager for Windows, and at very least for dev tools it works pretty well! It doesn't have a way to easily update-all, but it does let you install, uninstall, and update most dev tools entirely from the command line. Makes for a really quick setup of a new machine.


Actually, the command you are looking for is scoop update-all!

C:/> scoop update-all
scoop: 'update-all' isn't a scoop command. See 'scoop help'.


I love Linux as a development environment, and I really like tools like Multipass or Docker that let you pop up a quick Ubuntu VM regardless of what OS I'm running.

I've created scripts to install all of my favorite programming languages and tools, so I can have a fresh Linux install up and running for development in about 20 minutes. Linux is great because it gets out of your way and lets you build great things.

The biggest downside for me is software support. There are so many amazing games that only run on Windows, and the best writing tools are either Mac or Windows. I've found myself dual-booting Linux/Windows on nearly all of my personal computers so that I can have the best of both worlds.


Problems running them on WINE? For example, brand new games or demanding games that WINE can't handle (yet). Or just not a WINE fan, and getting it set up for your game of choice?

My games are ancient, and run just fine in dosbox. But I'm a gamer grognard.


Yeah, WINE is very hit and miss with what it supports. For a lot of the software I use, WINE only supports a version that is years behind the latest version, if it supports it at all.
I've also thought about just using a VM, but that has other drawbacks like performance. Booting to Windows on a separate hard drive has worked well.


WSL: Linux Kernel/CLI when you need it, Windows otherwise. For anything I'd boot to Linux for, WSL has replaced that need to dual boot.


I completely agree with all the people writing here Linux is love 😍 ever since I started using Linux I have felt so freakin powerful. finally in years I have all the power I want over my computer. also AUR is amazing
my fav distros


ArchLinux User Repository I guess.


Its the Arch(Linux) User Repository. Similar to a PPA, users can upload their own PKGBUILDs (Basically a script that installs a package).


I'm using manjaro, but its too heavy, even heavy on my ryzen 7 16 gb ram and ssd, i have no clue why.

I've tried mx, kali, ubuntu.(distro jumperrr)

What do you'll use for web development? I'm thinking of pop os now.... Should i?


Regarding communities - don't forget about keybase.io.

We have the strong and friendly programming & infosec community there. Anyone here - DM for more info if you're interested in participating - the more people |> more knowledge sharing |> more learning together & more fun.


You can borrow Windows or iOS, you can learn how to use them, the overlords may even let you change somethings like the wallpaper, maybe tell you what is inside and how it works, maybe. Is never yours, you paid for a house with locked closets, a car with a GPS you don't control and a engine you cannot see. Try to open a panel, to open the trunk or look at it from below and you are breaking the law.

Linux and BSD (and others like Haiku and Redox) are, currently, the only way to own your computer and the only way to really learn about it, free to do what you want with it, others praise themselves because the can change fonts and UI colors; we know better.

I used MS OS from DOS 6.0 to Win XP and after all those years I learned close to nothing, I was very proficient with Windows yet I knew nothing, just the "cute" "user friendly" pseudo-technical terms given by MS, I knew the location of every checkbox and icon, even knew a bunch of useful registry entries; I knew nothing. After a week using Mandrake Linux my world opened, not longer after I installed Gentoo, a week banging my head against the desk (it was in the dark ages) I messed up the installation 6 times, but after that week I learned so much, not Linux stuff, real technical knowledge, no more "home networks" or internet thingies: LANs, TCP/IP stack, DNS, etc. No more useless computer baby talk. I would still use computers as microwaves, as appliances and I would still be frightful of them like mysterious blackboxes if it hadn't been for Linux.


11 years ago I remember distinctly the moment I learned that there was a free operating system, just like the free tools I preferred on Windows at the time like VLC, Firefox, notepad++, and more. It was mindblowing! I soon learned about the GPL, the concept of copyleft, and began to become comfortable with the idea that I maybe wouldn't screw up my computer forever if I tried linux out on it.

10 years ago I switched for good and it's been wonderful.


I graduated in the 1990 and since then I (almost) used only Linux. Main drawback at that time was the difficulty of having hardware (printers, modems, ...) working with Linux. Nowadays that is more or less a memory...

What I like about Linux is the feel of total control: I can even change the kernel if I want... Also most of the open source software works pretty well, sometimes even better than the corresponding proprietary software, maybe with less whistles and bells, but it does its job and reliably too! (and if it doesn't I can correct it... I did that in the past)


For me, the SO's based on Linux is great in the majority of contexts, the problem is when you are using it as a Desktop Computer, you always will have problems with drivers and GUI interaction with the SO, feel a little unstable.


Which ones have you tried? Perhaps I can help you find one that works for you, because I personally haven't experienced this.


Thanks, I tried Ubuntu and Debian but there many problems with drivers, so, I installed Linux Mint and all is working, but still I can feel the operative system is not so fluent.

In the past, was the same, specially with drivers for graphic cards, network and others.

If you have an Nvidia graphics card, you could try Pop OS. It comes with a lot of software installed already, including a lot of drivers. If you download the version for Nvidia users, everything will be set up for you.
Pop OS download options

Another very polished distro is Elementary OS. I have it installed on a Nvidia system for a very non-technical person and it works really well.

Then you have Zorin OS, which is really great for people that want to use it as a desktop and never want to touch the terminal (but you could of course).

And lastly, there's Manjaro. Apparently the drivers are really good and it's very smooth. The only thing that's a little scary for me to recommend it is that it's based on Arch, so it gives you a lot of control. I can use it perfectly fine as a more advanced user, but someone I recommended it to didn't really understand it. So try the other three first and this one last.

I hope this helps!


This is so cool!

You can add Opensource.com to that list of communities. We write a lot about Linux, and I especially love the stories people share about falling in love with Linux.

If you're interested in sharing your story, shoot me a message here or matt @opensource.com 🐧


Fell in love with pacman package manager for arch


Linux doesn't hide anything under the hood. The only obstacle between me and figuring something out about my Linux box is time and my ability.


The best benefit that makes me love Linux is the freedom it provides. Personally, I like to feel free to manage and customize the system, use Arch Linux and choose most of the software packages that remain installed. Another example that I love about this "freedom" is the variety of desktop environments, like other software categories, I use Gnome, but I've used other DEs and in the future I can experiment with others.

I absolutely love Linux, like the freedom of software created with it. 🤩


"What do you love the most about Linux and freedom of the software?"

From my, slightly different perspective:

I love that I have been through all of this and realized that Linux kernel is basically a bloatware and (in most cases = default setup ) security nightmare.
One can manage AppVMs (like in the case of the QubesOS) or play with elegant FP (like in the case of NixOS) and / or reproducible builds, but hey, ain't nobody got time for real system hardening.

After all these years, I have realized that I'd rather prefer HardenedBSD box with lightweight UI setup for development / research / daily usage.

Frankly that was one of my best life decisions.

Still I'm on the mailing lists of many Linux-related projects though; we'll see what the future brings!


This is a question by my professor:

What is actual use of touch command in Linux?

(hint- it is not just for creating files)


It's not for creating files at all. That's just a side effect. People almost never want to create files manually, and the fact that people teach touch as a "must-know" command to "create files" always makes me sad.



Is there a way to remove the program which detects the end of file in Linux?


The only thing people still stick to windows is Visual Studio and Microsoft office which wine can't handle. If we get them work with Linux, there won't be any competition.


Lovely comic style

So, I love the open source community and discover new projects. I like Elementary Os but today i'm using Ubuntu and Deepin.


Xubuntu is my favourite dev OS since 16.04. and it will stay for 20.04 as it combines the ease of integration from the Ubuntu ecosystem with the simplicity of XFCE.


Have used various flavours over the years staring with Slackware in the 90s. My current main driver is Regolith Linux (Ubuntu).


I'm in love with Solus os. It allows me to do web dev. on my potato pc :p


I started my journey from ubuntu andnow on Arch.... Linux have a distro suitable from beginner to advanced.. The Customization and opensource nature is plus to user...


I am in absolute love with Ubuntu. It feels so comfortable and simple.


It's more like what I hate the least.

But I happen to hate it less than all other computer operating systems. Aside from my favorite tool to "control the operation of a computer:" a hammer.


Linux is definitely awesome. The fact that your system will update without rebooting your whole system is a huge win for me.


For me, Linux is everything... 🥰 🥰 🥰


I just started using it by installing it on my phone dev.to/dotnetdreamer/using-android...


The fact that you can revive old hardware with Linux.

I am amazed at how Windows 10 is atrocious on some (even new) hardware. But a lightweight Linux OS will perform fine on it


Anyone here who uses RHEL8 (Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8)?


I started using Linux a year ago, and every day I learn something new about it. It is being an amazing experience.

btw, I use arch


I like Manjaro, Arch based distro. I use it for six months, it's have some bugs and problems, but in summary it's cool distro


one thing i dont like is the touch pad drivers. they are really shitty


I don't know if you noticed but the kernel itself is not really the piece of art :D

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