Linux Flavors

Since Linux is open source and thus free to all, many folks, groups and companies have found it convenient to tailor variations of the Unix/Linux coding to their needs and to meet the needs of the Government, Commercial and Private users. As a result there are well over 70 different distributions ‘out there’.

Fortunately, for the personal, or casual user, ( as well as small businesses ) the list can be shortened down to a few. ‘Puppy’ is a pretty simple OS which places a low demand on computer resources and is fairly popular with many.

The Operating Systems with which I have spent the most time are:





Linux MX


Let's take each of them one by one and provide you with a short overview.

After you have checked these out you will probably have enough information to help you decide which system you would like to install.

Ubuntu (Pronounced) |oo'boontoo|

Ubuntu is an ancient African word meaning ‘humanity to others’. It also means ‘I am what I am because of who we all are’. The Ubuntu operating system brings the spirit of Ubuntu to the world of computers. Where did it all begin?

Linux was already established as an enterprise server platform in 2004, but free software was not a part of everyday life for most computer users. That’s why Mark Shuttleworth gathered a small team of developers from one of the most established Linux projects — Debian — and set out to create an easy-to-use Linux desktop: Ubuntu.

The vision for Ubuntu is part social and part economic: free software, available to everybody on the same terms, and funded through a portfolio of services provided by Canonical.

Ubuntu releases

The Ubuntu team broke new ground in committing to a programme of scheduled releases on a predictable six-month basis. It was decided that every fourth release, issued on a two-year basis, would receive long-term support (LTS). LTS releases are typically used for large-scale deployments.

Ubuntu is different from the commercial Linux offerings that preceded it because it doesn’t divide its efforts between a high-quality commercial version and a free ‘community’ version. The commercial and community teams collaborate to produce a single, high-quality release, which receives ongoing maintenance for a defined period. Both the release and ongoing updates are freely available to all users.

Ubuntu today

Ubuntu today has nine flavours and dozens of localised and specialised derivatives. There are also special editions for servers, OpenStack clouds, and mobile devices. All editions share common infrastructure and software, making Ubuntu a unique single platform that scales from consumer electronics to the desktop and up into the cloud for enterprise computing. (Information from

Kubuntu (/ku?.'bu?n.tu?/ koo-boon-too)

Kubuntu is an official flavour of the Ubuntu operating system which uses the KDE Plasma Desktop instead of the Unity graphical environment. As part of the Ubuntu project, Kubuntu uses the same underlying systems. Every package in Kubuntu shares the same repositories as Ubuntu,[3] and it is released regularly on the same schedule as Ubuntu.

Like Xubuntu, Lubuntu is intended to be a low-system-requirement, low-RAM environment for netbooks, mobile devices, and older PCs. Tests show it can use half as much RAM as Xubuntu, making it an attractive choice for installing on older hardware being refurbished for charitable distribution.

Lubuntu (/l?'b?ntu?/ loo-buun-too) is a lightweight Linux distribution based on Ubuntu but using the LXDE desktop environment in place of Ubuntu's Unity shell and GNOME desktop. LXDE is touted as being "lighter, less resource hungry and more energy-efficient".

Lubuntu is a fast and lightweight operating system. The core of the system is based on Linux and Ubuntu. Lubuntu uses the minimal desktop LXDE, and a selection of light  applications. It focuses on speed and energy-efficiency. Because of this, Lubuntu has very low hardware requirements. Lubuntu was founded by Mario Behling and is currently mainly developed by Julien Lavergne.

Lubuntu uses the LXDE desktop environment in place of Ubuntu's Unity shell and GNOME desktop. The LXDE Desktop is touted as being "lighter, less resource hungry and more energy-efficient".

Like Xubuntu, Lubuntu is intended to be a low-system-requirement, low-RAM environment for  netbooks, mobile devices, and older PCs. Tests show it can use half as much RAM as Xubuntu, making it an attractive choice for installing on older hardware being refurbished for charitable distribution. (From

The name Lubuntu is a portmanteau of LXDE and Ubuntu. LXDE stands for Lightweight X11 Desktop Environment, while the Lubuntu is a lightweight Linux distribution based on Ubuntu but using the LXDE desktop environment in place of Ubuntu's Unity shell and GNOME desktop. LXDE is touted as being "lighter, less resource hungry and more energy-efficient".

Lubuntu received official recognition as a formal member of the Ubuntu family on 11 May 2011, commencing with Lubuntu 11.10, which was released on 13 October 2011. (From Wikopedia)


Xubuntu's goals are to:

Provide an easy to use distribution, based on Ubuntu, using Xfce as the graphical desktop, with a focus on integration, usability and performance, with a particular focus on low memory footprint. The integration in Xubuntu is at a configuration level, a toolkit level, and matching the underlying technology beneath the desktop in Ubuntu. Xubuntu will be built and developed autonomously as part of the wider Ubuntu community, based around the ideals and values of Ubuntu.

The Xfce desktop environment is intended to use fewer system resources than the default Ubuntu Unity desktop. As recently as September 2010 the Xubuntu developers claimed that the minimum RAM Xubuntu could be run on was 128 MB, with 256 MB of RAM strongly recommended at that time. (From Wikopedia)

Xubuntu is an elegant and easy to use operating system. Xubuntu comes with Xfce, which is a stable, light and configurable desktop environment.

Xubuntu is perfect for those who want the most out of their desktops, laptops and netbooks with a modern look and enough features for efficient, daily usage. It works well on older hardware too.

MX Linux

MX Linux is a cooperative venture between the antiX and former MEPIS communities, using the best tools and talents from each distro. It is a midweight OS designed to combine an elegant and efficient desktop with simple configuration, high stability, solid performance and medium-sized footprint. Thanks to its high stability, easy learning curve and good looks, MX Linux makes a great no-fuss system for all types of users and applications. (Description from MX


The purpose of Linux Mint is to produce a modern, elegant and comfortable operating system which is both powerful and easy to use.

Linux Mint is the most popular desktop Linux distribution and the 3rd most widely used home operating system behind Microsoft Windows and Apple Mac OS.

Some of the reasons for the success of Linux Mint are:

It works out of the box, with full multimedia support and is extremely easy to use.

It's both free of cost and open source.

It's community-driven. Users are encouraged to send feedback to the project so that their ideas can be used to improve Linux Mint.

Based on Debian and Ubuntu, it provides about more than 65,000 software packages and one of the best software managers.

It's safe and reliable. Thanks to a conservative approach to software updates, a unique Update Manager and the robustness of its Linux architecture, Linux Mint requires very little maintenance (no regressions, no antivirus, no anti-spyware...etc). (From

Linux Mint is a community-driven Linux distribution based on Debian and Ubuntu that strives to be a "modern, elegant and comfortable operating system which is both powerful and easy to use."[5] Linux Mint provides full out-of-the-box multimedia support by including some  proprietary software and comes bundled with a variety of free and open-source applications. It's motto is "from freedom came elegance."

The project was conceived by Clement Lefebvre and is being actively developed by the Linux Mint Team and community. (

Linux Mint is a free and open source operating system (OS) distribution based on Ubuntu and  Debian for use on x-86 and x-64-compatible machines.

Currently, as of January, 2024 edition the team is moving a way, somewhat, from Ubuntu and more towards Debian and is available for 64 bit machines only.

> Mint is designed for ease of use and a ready-to-roll out-of-box experience, including multimedia support on desktops. The operating system is easier to install than most Linux  distributions. Mint includes software required for e-mail and online functionality as well as support for multimedia content, whether online or from a user's own files and physical media.

Unlike most Linux distributions, Mint includes proprietary third-party browser plugins, Java, media codecs, and other components to enable support for common accepted standards. This support allows for DVD and BluRay playback, as well as Flash for streaming media. Although the OS includes a firewall, Mint claims to have no need of anti-malware. Mint is compatible with the Ubuntu installer, which enables access to 45,000 existing pieces of free, open source software. 

There are several different desktop editions of Mint, including Cinnamon, GNOME, XFCE and KDE, to best support various hardware. Note that the KDE desktop environment is supported through Mint 18.03, Sylvia. However, as of June 30, 2018 when Mint 19.0 Tara, became available, support for the KDE desktop is no longer offered. Mint 19 is based on Ubuntu 18.04 bionic and continues to be developed, or upgraded, based on the latest version of Ubuntu. The operating system is also provided in an alternate Linux Mint Debian Edition for those that are more familiar with Linux. That edition is said to be less intuitive and user-friendly but also faster and more responsive.

Linux Mint is the third most popular home operating system, behind Microsoft's Windows and  Apple's Mac OS. (From Wikopedia)


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