Which Computer Operating System do you recommend?

I have to admit that I didn’t follow LMDE closely, but to my knowledge there have been some changes how it updates. Also in your provided link it says:

There are no point releases in LMDE 2, except for bug fixes and security fixes base packages stay the same, but Mint and desktop components are updated continuously.

which I would interpret that only the Mint features are updated on a rolling base whereas the system itself is not. As I understood the concept of LMDE there will be occasional major releases with a new base system, whereas the features and software only are updated on a rolling base.
Nonetheless, I also find it an interesting option, as out of the numerous Debian and Ubuntu derivatives, Mint was amongst my favorites (of the ones I tested).

Without making this decision for you, here’s a consideration to take in mind:
In general, Debian derivatives (Ubuntu included) and CentOS follow a conservative update policy for packages. Rather than following the upstream software projects for updates within a distro, they choose for many packages to back-port only bug- and security fixes. On the plus side this means that if your computer worked when installing the distro, an update is highly unlike to accidentally break things or alter behaviour greatly. On the downside, the versions of software you find in your repositories are often one or several versions behind upstream. Only with a full distro upgrade you will get the newer packages.
Fedora and Arch on the other hand are more proactive in releasing updates that are made upstream. This means that the software you run tends to be better up to date wrt. upstream and has less customisations (back-ports of fixes), but could alter appearance or behaviour after installing just an update. In the past updates have led to systems temporarily breaking in Fedora, but in my personal experience these days the quality of both upstream software and package management have reduced this risk quite a bit.

Which you prefer is up to you, but hopefully this can help make an informed decision!


When you would install Lubuntu on your Macbook (don’t know if that’s possible), then you will be surprised with the performance. Lubuntu works very well with a 512 MB graphics. It’s light so I guess even the ventilation should better cope.


Back when I upgraded to Windows 10, I started to play around with Linux distributions whenever I read a distro name I didn’t know and which seemed to be a promising candidate to switch over, so an easy switch for a Windows user like me was a priority.
While I’m still not switching over anytime soon, these are the ones that positively stuck with me so far, in that order:

  1. Linux Mint Xfce
  2. SolydX
  3. Xubuntu (Yeah, I like Xfce :slight_smile: )
  4. Solus (Budgie desktop looks and feels very good, but lags on my passively cooled AMD AM1, waiting for low-TDP Ryzen APU)
  5. Rosa Desktop Fresh R6 LXQt (Old, I know, but I haven’t tried a current version yet.)
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4 posts were split to a new topic: Coreboot vs. Libreboot

A post was merged into an existing topic: Which computer do you recommend?

I have been using Mageia at work and home since 2006 (then Mandriva).
It have wide hardware compatibility, nice and easy install and configuration graphical tools which do not get in your way if you want to use command line. It boasts 26 (!) desktops - of course Plasma, Gnome, Cinnamon, Xfce… and you can have several installed and just logout/login to another.

Lots of programs packaged, of course all normal desktop tools, but also electric CAD, mechanical 3D modelning, and other speciality programs, Tor server, Nextcloud server… For Fairphone connection i use KDEConnect and Syncthing - very fast and i need not sync files via Google nor phone network.

Regarding laptops i really like old quality laptops. The old T61p with vPro chip and Quadro graphicupgraded with modded BIOS, SSD faster RAM and CPU was really swift until it broke at age of 10 years this spring. Now i have a T400. BTW i read Libreboot works with T400.

The recommendation is of course Trisquel for freedom en security. Xubuntu works also pretty well and fast.
For secure devices and security issues take a look at https://tehnoetic.com/
They make a great job! Excuse me, but also for smart phones.

You don’t want anyone to try an OS last updated on 2014 and run away from outdated software. I used Trisquel for some time in 2015 and moved to Debian after waiting for a no-yet-released update.

Perhaps it’s an idea to get a live-cd offor instance Lubuntu and try it in your Macbook.
Then you can see how it looks like and get a feel without installing.
A live cd doesn’t change anything on your Macbook.
Just go to the distro you want and burn a live-cd.
If you want I can sent you live-cd’s of the distro’s you wish to try.

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Another option would be to use e.g. VirtualBox and try out different Linux distributions within a virtual machine (on your MacBook as well as on your new computer). Be aware that an operating system within a virtual machine may be a bit slow, but it should be sufficient, if you only want to get a first impression of different Linux systems and desktop environments.

Apart from this I would also recommend Ubuntu at the beginning, and Debian for the more experienced User.

Same here. I found it easier to adjust to my liking and it was slightly faster than Ubuntu. Well, under the hood most of it is the same, it’s the graphical interface that is the biggest difference. You can check out different websites to compare, see what you like the most.

I am mainly using XUbuntu. I find it offers good desktop functionality together with low resource usage. The simple desktop helped me to convert quite a lot of people coming from both the Windows and Mac worlds to Linux.

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Maybe not really answering your question here Paula but still my two cents nevertheless:
I myself have been using only Linux (Ubuntu and Mint) for some years now, mainly to support open source.
Would be nice to have a site which lists potential trouble regarding all sorts of aspects of OS selection (and not just OS specific sites addressed at specific problems).
Biggest problem for me so far was using external sound interfaces for recording music and there was nobody around to warn me. To run them under Linux external sound interfaces need to be “class compliant” and there are not many vendors creating these.

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Interesting that you mention audio devices. I have done lots of audio work with Linux and I find Linux more or less the best OS for a DAW. I am aware of the problems with “class compliant” audio devices. My sense is that with tablets (both iOS and Android) on the rise in the audio world, more devices are supporting the standard USB audio class interface these days.

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I think that a big-enough USB stick can be used too.

From own experience I know not every usb-stick can be made bootable.
Also your laptop/pc must be able to boot from a usb-stick. Mostly you have to alter the bios.

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I have switched the OS on my notebook from Windows to Ubuntu a few month ago and I can also recommend it. I think it is a good choice for a beginner. I found the wiki and forum from ubuntuusers.de very helpful.

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It’s not very specific about installation troubles, also because this would have to be very hardware specific, but distrowatch.com is a great resource to get an overview: https://distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=major

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I would also strongly recommend to run a live cd to get a feeling about the different user interfaces. And more important of course: is everthing working as expected (wlan, printer etc …).
I also guess Linux Mint is a good decision to start with.

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