The best Linux distributions of 2023 (2023)

The best Linux distributions offer stability and security in a Linux environment, but there are many different types and flavors to suit different needs. Here we help you find what's right for you, whether you're a beginner or an advanced user.

Many of the most popular Linux distributions are designed to appeal to a broad user base and can be customized to individual needs, but there are some specialized distributions created for a specific purpose.

Migrate from Windows? There is a distro that will ease the transition. Has a Windows update screwed up your bootloader? There is a distribution that will help you quickly solve the problem. Do you want to revive an old computer? Need to link disks into oneNAS? I want to run onefirewallthat will protect your entire network? Are you setting up a small home office?

Whatever your needs, the diverse open source community has a distribution for you.

In this guide, we'll look at some of the best Linux distributions available in 2023. We've looked at the best distributions for various use cases, with a focus on ease of use, disk size, and compatibility with thebest linux apps, and much more.

Here are what we think are the best Linux distributions in 2023.

we present them toobest online linux courses and training providers

The Best Linux Distros of 2023 in full:

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The best Linux distributions of 2023 (1)

1. Nitrux

The best Linux distribution for beginners

reasons to buy


easy adjustments


Using app images

reasons to avoid


Blog documentation.

If you are just taking your first steps in Linux, then you should start your journey with Nitrux. The distribution takes some of the most stable and respected open source projects and builds on them to create a distribution that caters to the sensibilities of new Linux users.

For example, instead of creating a custom desktop environment from scratch, Nitrux builds on the famous malleability of KDE Plasma along with some redesigned components to simplify the workflow for new users. It offers some desktop layouts to help users make the most of available screen space.

Nitrux even customized some management apps to make tasks like firewall and backup accessible to novice users. It comes with a good dose of apps for all kinds of desktop tasks.

The distro also supports and encourages the use of AppImages, making it easy to install additional apps. In fact, Nitrux plans to transition all of its graphics applications to AppImages. All AppImages are released in a Firejail sandbox, making Nitrux more secure than your typical Linux desktop out of the box.

The distro has an active community that you can interact with on major social networks. However, the lack of a dedicated documentation section is a disappointment. Nitrux is only available for 64-bit computers, but it can also be launched on older computers with legacy BIOS as well as newer EFI computers.

Looking for something to start with? Here is our list ofThe Best Linux Distros for Beginners.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (2)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (3)

2. SO Zorin

The Best Linux Distribution for Windows Users

reasons to buy


design change


Nutzbar ready for use


Tailor-made documentation

reasons to avoid


Older computers will have trouble running anything other than the Lite version.

The Zorin OS project started in 2008 with the sole intention of making Linux easy to use. Its developers wanted Linux to be accessible to everyday users, and they did so by introducing familiarity into the user interface.

The distro is aimed at beginner Linux users who are used to popular proprietary operating systems such as Windows and macOS. This is thanks to the custom Zorin Appearance application, which modifies Zorin's Gnome desktop environment to resemble Windows in both form and function.

Zorin is available in several different editions. Three of them i.e. Core, Lite and Education are offered as free downloads. Zorin is based on Ubuntu and the Core Edition is the standard version that includes all the necessary applications on a common desktop.

If you have an older computer, you can use the Lite Edition, which is designed for low-performance computers. The Education Edition, as the name suggests, is built for learning and comes with all popular open source learning apps and utilities.

Alongside those three is a fourth version called the Ultimate Edition which is currently available for $39. It includes support as well as some additional features eg. B. the ability to use interfaces that mimic macOS and come with all kinds of apps and games.

read our completeZorinOS review.

Looking for Windows-compatible Linux options? Here they arebest linux distros for windows users

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (4)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (5)

3. Pop!_OS

The best Linux distribution for games

reasons to buy


hybrid graphics


Special image for Nvidia users


keyboard navigation

Developed and maintained by hardware manufacturer System76, Pop!_OS not only comes on its own hardware, but is also available as a free download. The distro has several interesting features that make it an interesting option, especially for gamers.

The distribution is based on the Ubuntu LTS version and has its own user interface on top of Gnome called Pop Shell.

While there are other Linux game distributions out there, what's unique about Pop!_OS is that it comes with all the facilities that gamers need. For example, developers ensure that hybrid graphics work perfectly on the platform.

If you have a hybrid graphics card, the distro gives you the option to launch games on the GPU in the context menu. You can also easily switch between battery saving and high performance graphics.

There are some editions of Pop!_OS. In addition to the Standard Edition, there is one specially designed for users with Nvidia hardware and comes with the hardware's proprietary driver.

Pop!_OS also encrypts your install by default, and while it ships with minimal apps, you can extend your install with its intuitive custom app store called Pop!_Shop, which in addition to regular desktop apps also includes Steam, Lutris, and GameHub . . .

Do you want more fun with your Linux distribution? we have thebest linux distro for games.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (6)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (7)

(Video) 2023's Ultimate Linux Distro Guide - The Top 7 You Can't Miss! (NEW)

4. Kodachi

The Best Linux Distribution for Privacy and Security

reasons to buy


It can be used as a daily driver.


Conecta via VPN


Panic Room Selection Tool

Kodachi is designed for everyone who cares about their privacy and needs secure, anti-forensic, and anonymous distribution. The latest edition of the distribution is based on Ubuntu and uses a custom Xfce desktop.

Kodachi comes loaded with all sorts of security-focused and privacy-respecting apps, as well as a host of regular apps for you to use the distro as your daily driver. Your custom desktop is designed not to overwhelm first-time users, giving you access to all applications while remaining intuitive.

To ensure privacy, the distribution routes all Internet connections through avpn(opens in new tab)before switching to the Tor network. If you are in the know, you can easily modify the settings to connect through your own VPN service.

To increase its security, Kodachi uses AppArmor to isolate applications. It also includes several privacy protection tools such as VeraCrypt, zuluCrypt, KeePassXC, as well as the Metadata Anonymization Toolkit (MAT) for removing metadata information from files.

Its anti-forensic abilities are performed using several tools, including one that cleans RAM. The distribution also includes an option to create a password that, when entered, will securely erase all contents of your encrypted Kodachi installation.

Do you want a more secure distribution? we present thembest linux distros for privacy and security.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (8)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (9)

5. Redemption

The Best Linux Distribution for Repair and Rescue

reasons to buy


custom reset utility


Developed for novice users


lots of documentation

reasons to avoid


Experienced users may miss some tools

No matter you run Linux or Windows computer, you can use Rescatux to get out of the sticky situation when an error occurs.

With Rescatux, you get all the essential and useful tools to fix various Linux boot and Windows installation issues. The distribution uses the lightweight LXDE desktop, which makes it usable even on low-end machines.

On startup, the distribution automatically launches your custom helper application called Rescapp. The app is intuitive to use and makes the troubleshooting process accessible even for novice users.

Rescapp houses several buttons divided into different categories such as Boot, Grub, File System and Password. You can use them to fix common repair tasks like restoring boot loaders, repairing file systems, repairing partition tables, and resetting passwords on both Linux and Windows installations.

The buttons in each of the categories have descriptive labels that identify their function. Clicking on it will open the relevant documentation to explain the exact steps the distribution is taking to fix the issue.

If you are an advanced user, you can skip Rescapp and launch the rescue tools directly from the command line interface to save time. The Rescatux project also provides many how-to guides and videos to help first-time users.

Are you looking for a way to bring your machine back to life? we present thembest linux repair and rescue distributions.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (10)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (11)

6. Parrot Operating System

The Best Linux Distro for Forensic/Penetration Testing

reasons to buy


loaded with tools


categorized menus


encrypted persistence

Parrot OS is a wonderful penetration testing and vulnerability assessment distribution that does much more than some of its more popular peers like Kali Linux.

If you start Parrot from a USB hard drive, you can create a permanent partition to save your changes. With great care, the developers also allow you to encrypt this persistent partition for maximum security.

The distribution has a large selection of tools that are clearly organized in a categorized menu. These house the tools according to their use, e.g. B. Information gathering, vulnerability scanning, password attacks, digital forensics, and more.

Interestingly, Parrot also strives to be useful for regular computer users who need a secure and privacy-focused distro, such as hacktivists and journalists. The distro also has a home edition designed for everyday use by anyone who cares about online privacy and anonymity.

Do you need a cybersecurity distribution? Here is our list ofbest forensic and pentesting linux distributions.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (12)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (13)

7. OpenMediaVault

The Best Linux Distribution for NAS

reasons to buy


intuitive handling


Useful set of plugins


lots of documentation

reasons to avoid


Lacks enterprise NAS capabilities

Open Media Vault (OMV) is a Debian-based distribution designed to turn an old, unused computer (or even a Raspberry Pi) into a NAS (Network Attached Storage) solution.

The distribution is easy to install and manage through its intuitive browser-based administration interface. You can use OMV to include multiple drives in different software RAID layers or just use them as simple storage silos that can be accessed over the network using any of the major network protocols such as SSH, SMB/CIFS, FTP, Rsync, etc.

Best of all, you can extend the usefulness of your OMV NAS server by installing and activating various plug-ins. For example, you can turn your NAS into a torrent client to download data directly to the NAS storage or use it to stream stored music over the network.

(Video) Top 6 Brand New Linux Distros To Look Forward (2023)

read our completeOpen the Media Vault review.

Looking for more Linux media server options? we present them.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (14)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (15)

8. Carrier

The Best Linux Distribution for USB

reasons to buy


Quick Start


multiple desktops


persistent sessions

reasons to avoid


irregular pitches


Unintuitive installation process

While you could grab just about any Linux distribution off a USB drive and use it, Porteus is one of the few specifically designed for this use case.

The distro comes in several different editions, each with a different desktop environment, with most weighing in at around 300MB. They are all designed to use removable and rewritable media such as USB drives and SD cards. The distribution boots quickly and enables persistent storage by default.

The Porteus boot menu has some interesting options. For example, you can use it to copy the entire live environment into memory, which takes up more than 768 MB of system memory, start Porteus in text mode, boot a PXE server, or access the PLoP bootloader.

Although the project has not been regularly updated, a major release in 2022 has ensured that Porteus remains relevant and perfectly usable.

Do you want an operating system you can carry in your pocket? Here is the complete list ofbest bootable usb distributions.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (16)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (17)

9. Manjaro

The best Arch-based Linux distribution

reasons to buy


multiple editions


custom installer


ready to use

reasons to avoid


Some unconventional shortcuts

Arch Linux is one of the most versatile distributions that follows a rolling release model. It also has one of the most cumbersome and cumbersome installation processes. Manjaro offers all the benefits of Arch in an easy-to-install, out-of-the-box distribution.

The distribution is available in several official and community-supported flavors, each with different desktop environments. All versions come with all the regular desktop apps and also come with a number of custom apps to ease various management tasks.

The distribution is complemented by extensive documentation and a very active and helpful user community. There's also a handy tool called Hello, which contains helpful tips, hints, and web links to get you started using the distro.

read our completeManjaro's review.

we present them toobest arch based linux distros.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (18)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (19)

10. Linux Dog

Best lightweight Linux distribution

reasons to buy


Multiple installation mechanisms.


Large collection of apps.


binary compatibility

Puppy Linux is one of our favorite distributions for bringing old machines back into active service. The project is actually a family of distributions, each based on a different underlying distribution. For example, there is one based on Ubuntu and one based on Slackware.

Despite its small size, Puppy is second to none in out-of-the-box features, and there's an app for just about every task you could perform on a desktop computer.

The FossaPup edition of Puppy Linux is compatible with the Ubuntu repositories, giving you the ability to add an even greater variety of apps from this vast collection.

However, it's no surprise that Puppy skips mainstream apps in favor of lightweight options. The most iconic are Joe's use of the window manager and the Fox Filer file manager, which give it a distinctive look.

Looking for an operating system that won't wear down smaller hard drives? we present thembest lightweight linux distributions.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (20)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (21)

11. Arch-Linux

The Best Linux Distribution for Power Users

reasons to buy


continuous release


Large selection of apps


complete documentation

(Video) Choosing the Right Linux Distro

reasons to avoid


It takes time to install

Arch Linux is one of the most sought-after distributions designed for experienced Linux users who want to create their own custom installations.

While the average Linux distribution provides a predefined set of applications, Arch allows users to create their installation from scratch. However, the downside of this capability is that installing Arch is a cumbersome process.

Configuration files must be configured manually, and everything from partitioning to installing the bootloader must be done manually. While the process is well documented, it's still cumbersome for the average Linux desktop user.

But it's Arch's extensive package repository, package management tools, and rolling release model that has led to several projects like Manjaro offering to package its benefits into an easy-to-understand package.

Do you want to be more advanced with your Linux operating system? we present thembest linux distros for power users.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (22)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (23)

12. alone

The best Linux distro for developers

reasons to buy


designed for development


multiple editions


continuous release

reasons to avoid


Comes from the factory with limited tools

Solus is a general purpose rolling release distribution that can be used for all sorts of regular desktop tasks. In fact, it is touted as an ideal platform for developers.

The distribution advertises on its website that it supports several advanced editors and integrated development environments (IDEs) such as Atom, Idea, and Gnome Builder. In addition, you can manage code in various version control systems like Git, Bazaar and others through graphical tools like GitKraken and Git-Cola.

The distribution's website also states that the operating system supports a variety of programming languages, such as Go, Rust, PHP, Node.js and Ruby. The distribution doesn't come with many tools by default; Instead, it's a blank canvas to download and install a variety of other development tools and libraries from the repositories.

Are you looking for an operating system designed for programmers? we present thembest linux distro for developers.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (24)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (25)

13.Network server

The best Linux distribution for small businesses

reasons to buy


management graphical interface


useful functions



If you don't have time to manually configure and deploy a server, you can use the NethServer deployment to deploy many common network services with one click.

For example, with NethServer you can set up a web filter, email server, file server, web server, firewall, VPN, Slack-like team chat, and many other services. Best of all, you can deploy and configure almost every aspect of your server from an intuitive browser-based interface.

While NethServer eliminates the need to manually edit configuration files, you still need to have some knowledge and understanding of the basic technologies behind the useful user interface.

The CentOS-based distro offers all these features for free, making it an ideal choice for small businesses. However, the project also offers multi-level professional support for larger organizations.

Are you looking for an operating system to help you run your office? we present thembest linux distros for small businesses.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (26)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (27)

14. OPN Sense

Best Linux-Firewall-Distribution

reasons to buy


Based on HardenedBSD


Graphic interface


many features

Thanks to its intrusion prevention system, OPNsense is one of the best firewall distributions out there. Furthermore, it offers not only a dynamic firewall, but also various other network services.

OPNsense enjoys regular weekly security updates to ensure all threats are mitigated in a timely manner.

With OPNsense, you can display a captive portal, shape traffic, detect and prevent intrusions, configure a virtual private network (VPN), and much more. You can manage all these services through an intuitive, modern, web-based, multilingual and well-documented interface that is very pleasant to use.

Technically, however, OPNsense is not a Linux distribution and actually works with HardenedBSD, a security-focused fork of FreeBSD. OPNsense actually grew out of the efforts of two mature open source projects, namely pfSense and m0n0wall.

Do you need an operating system that protects your privacy? we present themBest Linux-Firewall-Distribution.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (28)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (29)

15. Raspberry Pi

The Best Linux Distribution for the Raspberry Pi

reasons to buy


officially supported


configuration tool

(Video) Zorin OS 16.2 Vs Linux Mint 21.1 : The ULTIMATE Battle for The Best Linux Distro of 2023 (NEW!)


Debian based

There are several distributions for the Raspberry Pi, but the best place to start is the Raspberry Pi operating system, which is the official Raspberry Pi distribution, and for good reason.

Formerly known as Raspbian, the Debian-based distribution uses a lightweight, custom LXDE-based desktop environment that uses the Openbox window manager. Custom desktop not only saves resources for other important tasks, but also looks elegant and attractive.

One of the best things about this distro is that it comes with a variety of educational apps, including Wolfram Mathematica and a Pi-specific version of Minecraft, aptly named Minecraft Pi. Despite this, this is still a general-purpose Linux distribution.

The latest version of the Raspberry Pi can now be used as a very powerful computer, and the distribution's developers have ensured that it works smoothly with the most popular operating conferenceSoftware como Google Meet, Microsoft Teams e Zoom.

Are you looking for a new operating system for your Raspberry Pi? we present thembest raspberry pi distro.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (30)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (31)

16. Free server

The best Linux distribution for servers

reasons to buy


long term support


Optional payment support


well documented

In some ways, Ubuntu Server Edition is just as popular as the desktop version. Ubuntu produces LTS and non-LTS versions of the server, as well as the desktop.

Ubuntu Server runs on all major architectures including x86-64, ARM64, POWER9, IBM s390x, RISC-V and more.

The distro is also popular for building cloud computing platforms, and the project also offers cloud images for AWS and Azure. In fact, Canonical claims that over 55% of OpenStack clouds already run on Ubuntu and will set up a managed OpenStack cloud for your company for a fee.

There's a thriving Ubuntu community, so expect to find lots of online support and discussions on the official forums, as well as elsewhere on the World Wide Web.

read our completefree trial.

Want to start a home server? we present thembest linux server distribution.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (32)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (33)

17. DebianEdu/Skolelinux

The best Linux distribution for education

reasons to buy


many uses


terminal server


Debian based

Some of the best tutorials in use today are open source, and the DebianEdu/Skolelinux packages are the best of them all.

The distribution is the result of collaboration between the two homonymous projects. In addition to learning tools, the distro also offers a full range of Linux desktop applications that allow you to use the distro as your daily driver.

However, one of the highlights of the distribution is that it comes with a preconfigured terminal server that meets the needs of a typical educational institution. In addition to installing the distribution on your computer, you can easily deploy it to multiple computers in a lab.

The distro's simple web-based administration tool gives you complete control over your network and lets you manage hundreds of individual user accounts.

Are you looking for an operating system for your classroom? we present them toobest linux distros for education.

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (34)

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (35)

18. Easy operating system

The best niche Linux distribution

reasons to buy


Nutzbar ready for use


many uses



reasons to avoid


no iso image

EasyOS is an experimental project from the original developer of Puppy Linux. While it looks like any other kind of Puppy, the distro was built from the ground up to explore using containers on the desktop.

EasyOS uses containers to create a secure distribution that is easy to use and manage. Interestingly, it doesn't use any of the existing container technologies like LXC and Docker and uses its own homebrew solution. This helps isolate individual applications and even run entire distributions with minimal overhead.

Despite its name, EasyOS isn't particularly straightforward. It is very different from what is known.linux desktopDistributions that most people are used to. The great thing about the distro, though, is that you don't need to be familiar with its containerized approach to use it.

read our completeEasyOS review.

Are you looking for something different? Here is our complete list ofThe Best Weird and Wonderful Niche Linux Distros.

What is a Linux distribution?

A Linux distribution, or distribution to use its full name, is an operating system built around the Linux kernel. Unlike Windows or Mac OS, a Linux operating system consists of many open source components that are produced and maintained by different organizations.

While you can source and assemble all of these programs yourself, setting everything up is time consuming and difficult. This is where distributions come in. They do all the hard work, deciding which open source software to use and presenting it in a format you can use with minimal setup.

How to Choose the Best Linux Distribution for You

Distributions are usually designed for a specific user or use case, so it's very easy to choose the best Linux distribution for you. If you are new to Linux and want a new operating system for your PC, we recommend choosing a popular general-purpose distribution that is updated regularly.

Besides, the world is your oyster. You'll find distributions for home entertainment servers, software development, security and privacy, and many other specific tasks. Decide what you want to achieve with Linux and use that as the basis for your distribution research.

How We Tested the Best Linux Distros

We install all Linux distributions to provide an accurate rating based on first-hand experience. We'll walk you through the installation process, test usability, and examine the main components used to build the distribution.

We check which programs, tools and applications are included by default and how niche distributions solve specific problems.

From there, we looked at ongoing support, frequency of updates, and upgrade options where available. We investigated each developer's website to assess the distribution's documentation, and looked to official online communities to see how active they are.

Read how we test, review and rate products on TechRadar(opens in new tab).

The best Linux distributions of 2023 (36)

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