Which Linux distro to install (for Pokitto dev etc.)?


Any recommendations for a good Linux distro nowadays (for a laptop)? I have used Zorin and Ubuntu in the past. I often prefer graphical UI over the command line. Of course, I will run Pokitto Dev & debugging tools on it too.


I use Fedora Silverblue pretty happily, though for development it is a bit different than most since it focuses on containerized workflows. So instead of just doing things directly on the host OS (installing packages etc…) you’d use a container (podman) and do all your stuff in there.

That said, I’d still recommend Fedora (the project) in general :slight_smile: if you like the traditional desktop paradigm (taskbar on the bottom etc…) then I’d recommend giving the Cinnamon spin a go :man_shrugging: but I really like GNOME myself which is what the main Workstation Edition and Silverblue come with.

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Containers…I just wonder would it be cheaper to just buy a barebones laptop and run a container in the cloud. Probably not yet as I can buy a decent used laptop for 300-400 euros, which is powerful enough for me for developing locally. I suspect the monthly costs would soon exceed that if I was running the dev env in the cloud.

Well by containers I mean something like this https://github.com/containers/toolbox

or alternatively (and less Fedora specific)

The cool part of these is that if I want to test something out, I can keep all my build stuff separate without needing to juggle dependency versions :smiley: and with distrobox (which I keep forgetting) I can use something like a Debian/Ubuntu container on my Fedora host :slight_smile:

I use a really nice distro called OSX :slight_smile:


I use MX Linux which fits my skill level nicely (“I’m not afraid of the command line and I know how to look for information and follow instructions, but really: Give me a UI to configure the usual stuff.”)

Also, Linux Mint might be worth a look - you get a quite productive system out of the box and they have a pretty active community.

If you’d like to try several distros, I’d recommend to use Ventoy. With this tool you only need to make one bootable USB stick and then copy the ISO images of the distributions into a directory - instead of overwriting the entire stick for each distribution.


I might try that.

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I am a bit worried about this:
" Starting with Linux Mint 20 only the amd64 (64 bit) architecture will be supported.[123][124] This is because Canonical decided to drop 32-bit support from Ubuntu 20.04, which is the base from which Linux Mint 20 is derived.[125] LMDE still supports the x86 architecture."

Are any of Pokitto build etc tools requiring x86?

I’m on Mint 20.2… Not sure what build tools you use, but I’m able to use and compile with FemtoIDE no problem.


I think this is only about the processor architecture - you can still use x86 binaries, but you can’t run the distribution on older (x86) systems.


Ah, you mean the distribution core components are 64 bit only. But it still supports running x86 programs. That sounds much more reasonable.

Looking around, it sounds like it’s just the case that the OS won’t run on 32-bit machines, not that the OS can’t run 32-bit executables.

That’s certainly what I’d expect at any rate. I wouldn’t have thought many companies are still making 32-bit machines anyway. x86-64 (64-bit x86) has been around for over 20 years now.

If that’s not the case, then you should still be able to recompile any open source tools as 64-bit if necessary. (Though that’s easier said than done.)

Unfortunately while I can name quite a few Linux distributions I have no first-hand experience.

MX and Mint seem to appear on a lot of ‘best of Linux’ lists so you’ll probably be in good company if nothing else.

I will mention, however, that I’ve heard good things about Puppy Linux.
It’s one of the lesser-known variants and is purported to be both lightweight and well featured.


This is my problem with Linux as a whole … all these competing, slightly different but almost the same but not quite compatible variants. If these various groups stopped making for the sake of making and focused their efforts on two or three distros then the distros themselves wouid be more polished and their intent clearer to the non-technical public.

Of course, trying to agree on what the ‘best’ distros are to develop would be WW III.

And before you say that I am just a Windows bigot - I currently have a Windows laptop, a Mac desktop and work on RHEL servers at work.


Really it boils down to features and how the distributions manage the software from upstream.

I would recommend avoiding a distribution that heavily patches and customizes software from upstream. Using whatever is closest to upstream is best :+1: .

So really it also depends on how you want your software delivered, this is the more important thing to consider. There are 2 major package (software) managing solutions, DEB and RPM. Though in today’s world there are also solutions like flatpak, snaps, or even appimage (which I personally would only use from flatpak :laughing: )

This is mostly why I chose Fedora as my distribution/community of choice. It follows closely to upstream in software, has a policy about free open source software (but doesn’t prevent you from doing whatever you want), and with flatpak it is super easy to get software you need/want even if it isn’t packaged by the distribution itself.

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Here is a list of most popular distros:

I assume that list is for distros used for dekstops.

For business servers, the list would look totally different.

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Now I have a dual boot laptop: Linux Mint Cinnamon 2.3 & Windows 10 :grin:

Next to install Pokitto dev tools.