evelopers are the most prominent users for Linux operating system. Linux probably has the biggest userbase of developers. Developers switch to Linux for many reasons like Security, up-to-date software, ease of use & more. With thousands of distros available in the market, it’s quite difficult for a new or even a pro developer to choose the right distro for his/her development rig.
Which Distro Is Best For Software Development?
Here is our list of top Linux distros for developers.
The Debian distro is not only one of the most popular distributions around but it also forms as the mother of many other Linux distros. The reason for its popularity is the fact that it comes with a large number of packages aimed at stability and security. For beginners in the world of Linux, it’s an absolute ton of tutorials and other support on the internet to solve many of the issues you face with Debian.
As a rock-solid Linux distribution, Debian Linux is so committed to free software (so it will always remain 100% free) but it also allows users to install and use non-free software on their machines for productivity. It is used both on desktop and server computers, also to run the infrastructure that runs the clouds.
Being one of the two oldest and famous Linux distributions (the other being RedHat Enterprise Linux), it is the basis of numerous popular Linux distributions notably Ubuntu and Kali Linux.
Perhaps this distribution does not need any introduction. Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, has devoted great efforts to make it a popular and widespread distro to the point that you can now find it in smartphones, tablets, PCs, servers, and cloud VPS.
Also, Ubuntu has the plus of being based on Debian and is a very popular distribution among new users – which is maybe the reason for its sustained growth over time. Although not taken into consideration in this ranking, Ubuntu is the base for other distributions of the Canonical family such as Kubuntu, Xubuntu, and Lubuntu.
On top of all that, the installation image includes the Try Ubuntu feature, which lets you try Ubuntu before actually installing it on your hard drive. Not many major distributions provide such feature nowadays.
Pop OS is probably the best Ubuntu-based Linux distribution if you’re not looking for a lightweight Linux distribution.
It provides a polished and snappy experience when compared to Ubuntu GNOME edition. You also get some interesting features like automatic window tiling, window stacking, and a few more with Pop OS.
You also get a vanilla GNOME experience on Pop OS when compared to Ubuntu. However, unlike some other options, it does not officially support other desktop environments out of the box. So, if you do not like GNOME, you may have to manually try other desktop environments as an experiment. You might find the review of Pop OS 20.04 to explore more about it.
Zorin OS is one of the best and easy to use Linux desktop distributions currently available. It is an alternative to Windows and macOS, thus a gateway into the Linux world. What makes it popular is its powerful, clean, and polished desktop which offers the Zorin Appearance app that lets users tweak the desktop to resemble the environment they are familiar with.
Based on Arch Linux, Manjaro aims to take advantage of the power and the features that make Arch a great distribution while providing a more pleasant installation and operation experience out of the box both for new and experienced Linux users.
Manjaro comes with preinstalled desktop environments, graphical applications (including a software centre) and multimedia codecs to play audio and videos.
MX Linux tops the list thanks to its high stability, elegant and efficient desktop, and also an easy learning curve. It is a midweight desktop-oriented Linux operating system based on Debian. It comes with a simple configuration, solid performance, and a medium-sized footprint. It is built for all types of users and applications.
Additionally, it is essentially user-oriented, to assure that the system works out of the box, it comes with a certain amount of non-free software. One unique thing about MX Linux is that it ships with systemd (system and service manager) included by default but disabled because of the controversies surrounding it, instead, it uses systemd-shim which emulates most if not all systemd functions that are required to run the helpers without employing the init service.