From official repo not only ubuntu,see


Low RAM ? Low CPU? Old or experimental?Servers or OS?.

No problem.Open Source.

Free no need money.

more(here) # FreeBSD archive (here)

1998 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

1999 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2000 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2001 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2002 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2003 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2004 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2005 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2005 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2006 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2007 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2008 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2008 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

  • PC BSD 7.0.1 (DVD) Based on FreeBSD 7.0 (Release 17 october 2008)

2009 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2010 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2010 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

  • PC BSD 8.0 (DVD) Based on FreeBSD 8.0 (Release 22 february 2010)

2011 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2011 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

  • PC BSD 8.2 (DVD) Based on FreeBSD 8.2 (Release 21 february 2011)
  • Fedora 15 (DVD) Linux 2.6.42 (Release 24 may 2011, end of life 26 june 2012)
  • Linux Mint 11 Gnome (DVD) Linux 2.6.38 (Release 26 may 2011, end of life 28 october 2012)
  • Mandriva 2011 (DVD) Linux 2.6.38 (Release 27 august 2011, end of life august 2014)
  • Linux Mint 12 Gnome (DVD) Linux 3.0 (Release 19 november 2011, end of life 9 may 2013)

2012 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2012 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2013 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2013 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2014 : 32-bits PC (Intel x86) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

2014 : 64-bits PC (AMD64) operating system    (Checksum sha256sum)

Old Ubuntu Releases see below:

The following old releases of Ubuntu are available:

The following releases are also available which have been superseded by later point releases (the current point release is available on as usual):

Some old releases of Kubuntu, Edubuntu, and Xubuntu are also available here.

For current releases, see

ICONameLast modifiedSizeDescription

PARENTDIRParent Directory  -  
DIR4.10/2006-12-04 12:13 -  
DIR5.04/2007-04-23 13:04 -  
DIR5.10/2007-04-23 13:01 -  
DIR6.06.0/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR6.06.1/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR6.06.2/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR6.10/2007-09-05 17:56 -  
DIR7.04/2008-05-17 12:52 -  
DIR7.10/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.04.0/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.04.1/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.04.2/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.04.3/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.04.4/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR8.10/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR9.04/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR9.10/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR10.04.0/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIR10.04.1/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIR10.04.2/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIR10.04.3/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIR10.04.4/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIR10.10/2010-09-30 09:06 -  
DIR11.04/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR11.10/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIR12.04.0/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIR12.04.1/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIR12.04.2/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIR12.04.3/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIR12.04.4/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIR12.10/2016-04-22 13:18 -  
DIR13.04/2016-04-22 13:21 -  
DIR13.10/2016-04-22 13:21 -  
DIR14.04.0/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIR14.04.1/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIR14.04.2/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIR14.04.3/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIR14.04.4/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIR14.10/2016-04-22 13:22 -  
DIR15.04/2016-04-28 18:22 -  
DIR15.10/2016-08-04 21:34 -  
DIR16.04.0/2017-02-16 23:31 -  
DIR16.04.1/2017-02-16 23:31 -  
TXTFOOTER.html2012-11-02 11:42 21  
TXTHEADER.html2017-02-17 00:38 2.3K 
DIRbreezy/2007-04-23 13:01 -  
DIRdapper/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRedgy/2007-09-05 17:56 -  
DIRedubuntu/2014-02-06 16:29 -  
IMGfavicon.ico2004-09-15 13:00 4.2K 
DIRfeisty/2008-05-17 12:52 -  
DIRgobuntu/2009-07-23 13:12 -  
DIRgutsy/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRhardy/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRhoary/2007-04-23 13:04 -  
DIRintrepid/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRjaunty/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRkarmic/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRkubuntu/2014-02-06 16:45 -  
DIRlucid/2015-10-21 22:38 -  
DIRmaverick/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRmobile/2009-07-23 13:12 -  
DIRmythbuntu/2011-02-02 12:51 -  
DIRnatty/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRoneiric/2013-08-23 20:43 -  
DIRports/2009-07-23 13:12 -  
DIRprecise/2015-03-26 19:14 -  
DIRquantal/2016-04-22 13:18 -  
DIRraring/2016-04-22 13:21 -  
DIRreleases/2016-10-11 14:59 -  
DIRsaucy/2016-04-22 13:21 -  
DIRtrusty/2017-02-16 23:12 -  
DIRubuntu-core/2012-08-24 00:17 -  
DIRubuntu-server/2006-10-19 13:28 -  
DIRubuntustudio/2014-02-06 16:28 -  
DIRutopic/2016-04-22 13:22 -  
DIRvivid/2016-04-28 18:22 -  
DIRwarty/2006-12-04 12:13 -  
DIRwily/2016-08-04 21:34 -  
DIRxenial/2017-02-16 23:31 -  
DIRxubuntu/2013-08-23 20:43 -  

Linux Mint Releases

Best Lightweight Linux distributions

Let’s start from the #7 of the list and move on towards number one.

7. Linux Lite

Linux lite welcome screen

As the name suggests Linux Lite is the lite weight Linux distribution that does not need geeks’ hardware to run it, but a beginner will be able to use it on older computers easily. Linux Lite is based on Ubuntu LTS (Long Term Support) releases. The LTS version gives support for 5 years which means once you install Linux Lite on your computer, it will provide updates for 5 years.

Linux Lite Team says: “Linux Lite is fully functional out of the box, this means that you won’t have to install extra software when you boot your computer for the first time.”  This is pretty helpful for newbies as they don’t need to go for some basic apps search to install. Most of the basic apps are built in with OS.

Current release Linux Lite 2.4 has several improvements and fixes. There is added support for exFAT, Android MTPFS, VPN connections, Bluetooth and NTP and many more changes made in this release. Some of the pre-installed apps are Firefox for web browsing, Thunderbird for emails, Dropbox for Cloud storage, VLC Media Player for Music, LibreOffice for office, Gimp for image editing and Lite tweaks to tweak your desktop.

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • 700MHz processor
  • 512mb RAM
  • VGA screen 1024×768 resolution
  • DVD drive or USB port for the ISO image
  • At least 5 GB free disk space

Download Linux Lite

6. CrunchBang++

CrunchBang++ is also known as CBPP or #!++ or CrunchBang Plus Plus. Crunchbang++ is the clone of dead Linux distribution Crunchbang Linux that was known for simplicity and lite weight. CrunchBang++ supports old computers and runs without any issue. CrunchBang++ is based on Debian 8 (Jessie) with the minimal design interface and built around the minimal and lightweight Openbox window manager.

This project is continuing with the same aim to provide easy to use & lite weight Linux with good functionalities. That’s why Crunchbang++ includes a minimal design, simple & sleek interface.

crunchbang sleek user interface


Some of the default applications in Crunchbang++ are Geany IDE, Terminator terminal emulator, Thunar File Manager, Gimp for image editing, Viewnior image viewer, VLC Media Player for music, Xfburn CD/DVD burning software, Iceweasel for web browsing, Transmission torrent client, Gnumeric spreadsheet editor, Evince pdf viewer, gFTP file transfer client, Xchat IRC client, AbiWord for office.

Any beginner can install and start using pre-loaded distribution instantly. You can download Crunchbang++ Linux torrent from their download page.

Download CrunchBang++

5. Bodhi Linux

Bodhi Linux

Another lite Linux distribution is Bodhi Linux that gives life to older PCs & Laptops. Bodhi Linux is quite known for its lightness. There are not much software pre-loaded on Bodhi Linux so it’s not big in size and when installed on older computers it runs freely without using much memory. But do not think that you can not install other applications, you can install any application that you need.

The latest version of Bodhi Linux is 3.0 which has several improvements over the previous version. Some of the new features are:

Other than this, Enlightenment makes the distro a lot faster. Enlightenment is faster than other window managers that are used in other Linux distributions. If you have any problem using Enlightenment or any other function of Bodhi then there are helpful guides written by the team.

By default Bodhi Linux does not include many applications but there are some basic applications such as Ephoto for Graphics, Midori for web browsing, ePad text editor but, unfortunately, there are no applications for Multimedia. But don’t worry! As I said above you can install other applications through App Center. PPAs meant for Ubuntu also work in Bodhi Linux, mostly.

Suggested Read
Linux Music Player Audacious 3.3 released

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • 1.0ghz processor
  • 256MB of RAM
  • 4GB of drive space

Bodhi Linux Download

4. Lubuntu

lubuntu lightweight Linux distribution

Fourth one in our list is Lubuntu, as the name suggests a member of Ubuntu family but based on LXDE desktop environment. Lubuntu also supports older computers that had been buried (Just kidding! You can also use Lubuntu on modern hardware). Lubuntu is based on Ubuntu but has less packages and very lite. Lubuntu is the lightest derivatives of Ubuntu so it specializes speed, support with older hardware.

If you were using Ubuntu earlier then you will not find Lubuntu unfamiliar. Software and repositories are same so you will get all software that you were using on Ubuntu from their repositories. But take care of your system when installing any application. Select an application that can consume less resources of your old computer. Don’t use heavy apps.

Compared to other light Linux desktops like Puppy or Sparky Lubuntu has more applications already installed.

Lubuntu Trasty Tahr

GPicView for image viewing, MTPaint for paint, Evince for PDF, Audacious for music, Gnome-Player for video, guvcview for webcam, Chromium for web browsing, Sylpheed for email, Pidgin for instant messaging, Transmission for torrent, Gnumeric for spreadshee, Abiword for office, Xpad for notes and there are even more.

Perhaps you are confused if Lubuntu is a light weight system or loaded with every applications. Well that’s what I don’t know. But overall Lubuntu works good on older computers and consumes less system resources.

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • A Pentium II or Celeron system with 128 MB of RAM is probably a bottom-line configuration that may yield slow yet usable system with a standard lubuntu desktop.
  • 14.04 32 bit ISO require your CPU to have Physical Address Extensions, or PAE. “PAE is provided by Intel Pentium Pro and above CPUs, including all later Pentium-series processors (except most 400 MHz-bus versions of the Pentium M).” – If you have an error with Celeron M reporting “NON-PAE CPU” and would like to install Lubuntu 14.04, please see this page
  • For PowerPC, it is known to run on a G4 running at 867MHz with 640MB RAM.

Download Lubuntu

3. SparkyLinux

In our list #3 is SparkyLinux. SparkyLinux is another lightweight but at the same time SparkyLinux also targets modern computers so it has another version which is loaded with applications and make the distro run instantly after installing. Did I tell you what distro SparkyLinux is based on? No? Oooops! Actually SparkyLinux is based on Debian testing branch and it has several desktop environments including LXDE, OpenBox/JWM, e17, MATE, Razor-QT, Cli and the GameOver edition. Razor-QT is quite faster than other mentioned except Cli (Command Line Interface).

sparky razorqt

As said earlier, it has two editions: Full edition and Base edition. Full edition is loaded with applications so that you do not have to install them manually, but that is not for our old computers. The Base edition is not loaded with heavy applications so it’s light and does not use much system resources. Although Sparky has its own repositories to install most of the applications.

The list of applications installed by default is different for different Sparky, Full, Base and Gaming edition and is available below each edition on the download page here.

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • i486 / amd64
  • 256MB RAM – LXDE, e17, Openbox, GameOver
  • 384MB RAM – MATE, Razor-Qt
  • 5GB of hard drive or flash USB stick for installation – 10GB recommended
  • 2GB of hard drive or flash USB stick for installation (CLI edition)

Download SparkyLinux

2. Puppy Linux

As I mentioned above now distributions will be less in size but speedy. Puppy Linux is one of them, Puppy Linux latest release is Puppy Linux 6.0.2 tahrpup CE that is only 199 – 201MB in size. Yes! It’s very small. This small Linux distribution can be booted with a small size USB stick.

Suggested Read
Top 5 Best Icon Themes For Ubuntu 13.10

Puppy Linux can be booted live with either a CD/DVD/USB and onceits booted you can eject CD/DVD/USB and Puppy Linux will run smoothly. It’s so tiny that it saves everything on RAM which makes it very fast. You can even save any data on the same USB that you are booting the Puppy Linux from. The Quirky 7.0.3 release is even smaller than tahrpup CE, it is only 176MB.

tahrpup6 desktop in Puppy Linux

Puppy Linux uses JWM and Openbox window managers by default which is quite simple to use so beginners will have no problem getting familiar with it. If you are using Puppy Linux on old computer then this will more likely to fit into that but do not demand those high graphics applications. Try to complete your work with light applications and tools.

Because Puppy Linux is built to be fast so it does not come along with bundles of applications. But it does have some basic apps. For example, Abiword for word processing, Gnumeric for spreadsheets and assorted graphics editing and media playback programs. Personally I use Puppy Linux to recover data or to repair my currepted OS and believe me, it helps me a lot.

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • CPU   : 333MHz
  • RAM :  64MB (recommended 256 MB)

Download Puppy Linux

1. Tiny Core

Be ready to be amazed by the Tiny Core. I bet Windows’ smallest image editing app will be heavier than Tiny Core Linux. Yes! It is just 15MB in size! Amazed? It takes more time download a low quality small video clip than the Tiny Core.

Well that was about the size of distro but what is inside will also amaze you. It comes with the minimal interface and very few applications installed. If you have an ancient computer then try this out and see the magic. It boots faster than any other OS.

Tiny core user interface

The Tiny Core Linux was forked from Damn Small project but now it is completely independent. This small distro comes with FLTK/FKWM and BusyBox desktop by default. You will find many things missing, for example, hardware graphics but don’t worry you can install them manually if you want.

Tiny Core Linux terminal window

There are three editions of Tiny Core which are Core, Tiny Core and CorePlus. Core is the base system that has only CLI (Command Line Interface). This will amazingly fit inside the old computer but as this is a CLI so an experienced/advance users can operate it well. The current version of Core edition is only 9MB. :)

TinyCore edition will be for a normal user who is familiar with GUI (Graphical User Interface). A beginner can be familiar with this edition of Tiny Core Linux. The current release of TinyCore is only 15MB in size. :)

CorePlus is an installation image and not the distribution. It is recommended for new users who only have access to a wireless network or who use a non-US keyboard layout. It includes the base Core System and installation tools to provide for the setup with the following options: Choice of 7 Window Managers, Wireless support via many firmware files and ndlswrapper, non-US keyboard support, and a remastering tool. The current release of CorePlus is only 72MB in size.

Download Tiny Core


Installing any of the following Linux on your older hardware will be very easy. The good thing is that there are many tutorials or guides provided by the team itself to help new users. Also you will need to do a little research about the applications you want to install on very tiny distributions. Prefer the application that uses less system resources and  has a simple user interface. If you maintain the installations then there will be no problem using any of the Linux listed above.

Finally, thank you for reading article and don’t forget to tell your favorite Linux distributions in the comment below. In similar read, I recommend reading about the best Linux distributions for beginners. Also check out some non Ubuntu beginner friendly Linux distributions.

Index of /pub/fedora/linux/releases

Icon  Name                    Last modified      Size  Description
PARENTDIR Parent Directory - DIR 10/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR 11/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR 12/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR 13/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR 14/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR 15/ 2013-09-05 19:09 - DIR 16/ 2013-09-05 19:20 - DIR 17/ 2013-09-05 19:25 - DIR 18/ 2015-02-24 00:45 - DIR 19/ 2015-02-24 00:57 - DIR 20/ 2015-07-16 17:32 - DIR 21/ 2016-05-17 20:38 - DIR 22/ 2015-05-23 15:22 - DIR 23/ 2015-10-31 17:42 - DIR 24/ 2016-06-17 01:43 - DIR 25/ 2016-11-18 14:41 - DIR 26/ 2017-07-07 16:03 - DIR 7/ 2016-05-21 03:28 - DIR 8/ 2016-05-21 02:12 - DIR 9/ 2013-04-25 08:48 - DIR test/ 2017-06-09 14:37 -

What Is a Linux Server Operating System?

What differentiates a Linux server operating system from a general Linux distribution? Consider server hardware. Servers are essentially computers with specialized specifications. For instance, server hardware ensures maximum uptime, efficiency, and security. Additionally, servers balance computing power with power consumption. Similarly, Linux server operating systems prioritize security and resource consumption.

A Linux server operating system serves content to client devices. Accordingly, server operating systems feature tools for simple server creation. Because servers commonly run headless, the graphical user interface (GUI) in a Linux server operating system remains less important.

According to IDC, hardware sales data indicates that 28 percent of servers are Linux-based. However this likely doesn’t account for home labbers. While there are dedicated Linux server operating systems, you may roll your own. The key here is to use a Long Term Service (LTS) iteration and install your desired software. LTS flavors provide stability and a longer support cycle.

When selecting a Linux server operating system, also consider your use. Using your Linux computer as a media server differs from setting up a game server. Using Your Linux Computer as a Media Server (Part 2) Using Your Linux Computer as a Media Server (Part 2) Read More

1. Ubuntu Server

Ubuntu is arguably the most well-known Linux operating system. With a plethora of Ubuntu derivatives, it’s a stable distribution. Ubuntu and its variants offer excellent user experiences. Ubuntu Server is available in two versions: LTS and a rolling-release. The LTS Ubuntu Server release boasts a five year support cycle. Although the support cycle isn’t five years, the non-LTS variant features nine months of security and maintenance updates.

While Ubuntu and Ubuntu Server are pretty similar, Server offers different amenities. Notably, Ubuntu Server provides OpenStack Mitaka, Nginx, and LXD. Such inclusions cater to system administrators. Using Ubuntu Server, you can spin up web servers, deploy containers, and more. Moreover, it’s server-ready out-of-the-box.

Although it’s not a server distro, Ubuntu LTS does feature a five year support cycle. I’m currently using Ubuntu 16.04 LTS to run a dedicated Plex server as well as a Linux game server. LTS distros can function perfectly well as Linux server operating systems. You’ll just need to install server software on your own.

Who should use this: If you’re new to Linux or server operating systems, Ubuntu is a great choice. Ubuntu remains one of the most popular Linux distros in part because of its user friendliness. Accordingly, Ubuntu Server is a fantastic entry-level Linux server operating system. It’s superb as a media server, game server, or email server. More advanced server set ups are feasible with Ubuntu Server, but it’s definitely a go-to for basic servers and novice users.

2. openSUSE


SUSE Linux debuted in 1993. In 2015, open-source variant openSUSE migrated toward SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLE). There are two openSUSE derivatives: Leap and Tumbleweed. Leap features longer release cycles whereas Tumbleweed is the rolling release. Tumbleweed is better for power users with its up-to-date packages like the Linux Kernel and SAMBA. Leap is better for stability. Updates bolster the operating system.

Default tools posit openSUSE as a fantastic Linux server operating system. openSUSE includes openQA for automated testing, Kiwi for Linux image deployment on several platforms, YaST for Linux configuration, and the comprehensive package manager Open Build Service. In abandoning its previous nine month release cycle and focusing on stability like SLE, openSUSE became a viable Linux server environment. CIO even dubbed openSUSE “…the CentOS and Debian of SUSE.”

Who should use this: openSUSE is more suited to power users like system administrators. It’s great as a web server, home server, or home server/web server combo. System administrators benefit from tools like Kiwi, YaST, OBS, and openQA. The versatility of openSUSE makes it one of the best Linux server operating systems. In addition to solid server capabilities, openSUSE does sport a lovely desktop environment. For more basic servers, openSUSE is usable but a bit overkill. Still not convinced? Check out these six reasons to use openSUSE. 6 Reasons You Should Choose openSUSE and the Geeko 6 Reasons You Should Choose openSUSE and the Geeko There are good reasons openSUSE continues to attract users, and here are some of them. Maybe you will be the next person to fall in love with the Geeko. Read More

3. Oracle Linux

Oracle-LinuxImage Credit: Wikipedia

If you did a double take when reading “Oracle Linux,” you’re not alone. Oracle Linux is a Linux distribution powered by tech giant Oracle. It’s available with two kernels. One features the Red Hat Compatible Kernel (RHCK). This is the same kernel as found in Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). Oracle Linux is certified to work on lots of hardware from the likes of Lenovo, IBM, and HP. Oracle Linux features Ksplice for enhanced kernel security. There’s also support for Oracle, OpenStack, Linux containers, and Docker. It’s branded with an Oracle theme including an Oracle penguin.

There is support, but it’s paid. Unless you’re running Oracle Linux in an enterprise environment it’s not worth the price. If you need to spin up a public or private cloud, Oracle Linux is a stellar server operating system. Alternately, try Oracle Linux if you simply need the Oracle-branded Linux penguin.

Who should use this: Oracle Linux is best for datacenters or creating clouds with OpenStack. More advanced home server users and enterprise-level settings are best for Oracle Linux.

4. Container Linux (Formerly CoreOS)


CoreOS rebranded to Container Linux in 2016. As the name suggests, Container Linux is a Linux operating system built for deploying containers. There’s a concentration on simplifying containerized deployments. Container Linux is a superb operating system for secure, highly scalable deployments. Clustered deploys are easy and this distro includes means for service discovery. There’s documentation and support for Kubernetes, Docker, and rkt.

However, there’s no package manager. All apps must run inside containers, so containerization is mandatory. Nevertheless, if you’re working with containers Container Linux is the best Linux server operating for a cluster infrastructure. It offers an etcd which is a daemon running across each computer within a cluster. You’ve got install flexibility too. In addition to an on-premise installation, you can run Container Linux on virtualization mediums like Azure, VMware, and Amazon EC2.

Who should use this: Container Linux is best for servers in a cluster infrastructure or with containerized deploys. This likely won’t mean the average home labber. But with official Docker images from the likes of Plex, Container Linux can function as anything from a basic home media server to complex clustered set up. Ultimately, use Container Linux if you’re comfortable with containers. Along with openSUSE, Container Linux is one of the best new and updated Linux operating systems you should try. The Newest Linux Operating Systems for Every Niche The Newest Linux Operating Systems for Every Niche Linux operating systems are constantly updated, with some are more substantial than others. Not sure whether to upgrade? Check out these new Linux operating systems and to see if you should try them. Read More

5. CentOS

CentOSImage Credit: Wikipedia

CentOS provides a stable environment. It’s an open-source derivative of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). Thus, CentOS delivers an enterprise-class server experience. The Red Hat sponsored operating system uses the exact source code as found in RHEL. CentOS employs the RPM package manager. In 2010, survey data found that about 30 percent of all Linux servers operated on CentOS. There’s a reason: it’s a very stable server environment with Red Hat sponsorship.

Notably, CentOS functions well on mainframes. For users that prefer a GUI, KDE and GNOME are both available. CentOS can be used as a straightforward desktop environment. Because of Red Hat support and a thriving community, CentOS remains bug free.

Who should use this: CentOS provides the functionality and stability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Therefore it’s perfect for advanced Linux server operating system. Use CentOS if you’re looking for a free RHEL alternative. However CentOS is fairly beginner friendly because it retains a package manager. Overall, CentOS is best as a free Red Hat Enterprise Linux alternative.

6. Arch Linux

Arch-LinuxImage Credit: jasonwryan via

Many servers limit power consumption. Reducing power draw is a major benefit particularly for always-on machines. Similarly, Linux server operating systems should consume few resources. Allotting resources properly is key for maximum uptime and server efficiency. Many Linux distributions use fewer resources than Windows or macOS counterparts. Arch is a simple, lightweight distribution that abides by the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) principle.

There’s a dedicated server section of the Arch Linux Wiki. You can learn all about configuring Arch Linux as a server operating system. While there’s not a pre-packaged server release available for download, this Wiki provides the steps to creating your own. You can install popular server software including MySQL, Apache, Samba, and PHP for Arch.

Who should use this: Arch Linux is a great all-around Linux server operating system, ideal for turning an old PC into a server. But although it’s lightweight, Arch is equally as a functional on beefy hardware. Additionally, Arch Linux is best for users with technical knowhow since you’ll have to set up Arch as a server.

7. Mageia

Mageia-linuxImage Credit: Wikipedia

Mageia is a Linux operating system that prioritizes security and stability. It’s a fork of Mandriva Linux that debuted in 2010. A 2012 PC World praised Mageia, now on its fifth iteration. Although there are many Linux operating systems, there’s also a big list of Linux desktop environments. Mageia includes a bevy of environments such as KDE, GNOME, Xfce, and LXDE.

Rather than MySQL, Mageia includes MariaDB. Server-centric inclusions like the 389 Directory Server and Kolab Groupware Server make Mageia a stellar Linux server operating system.

Who should use this: Mageia is a dependable Linux server operating system. It’s loaded with tools like MariaDB and Kolab Groupware Server. Plus, Mageia and boasts a stable, secure environment. Users who require a GUI should consider Mageia because of its myriad of desktop environments.

8. ClearOS


ClearOS is specifically engineered for servers, gateway machines, and network systems. The standard install features security enhancements. There’s a default firewall, bandwidth management tools, a mail server, and intrusion detection. ClearOS 7 Community Edition sports a whopping 75 apps and tools.

While there are paid ClearOS tiers, the Community Edition remains free. Additionally, ClearOS updates are completely free from upstream sources. However, these free updates aren’t tested.

Who should use this: ClearOS is a dedicated Linux server operating. Its wide-ranging app store posits ClearOS as a distro for Linux gurus. Hobbyists and Linux specialists need only apply. Novice users, opt for a different server distribution.

9. Slackware

Slackware-ServerImage Credit: Wikipedia

Slackware is a long-standing Linux server distribution. The first iteration debuted in 1993. According to the Slackware Linux website, the project goal is “the most ‘UNIX-like’ Linux distribution.” By default, Slackware boots into a command line interface.

A full Slackware installation features C and C++, the X Window System, a mail server, web server, FTP server, and news server. Moreover, Slackware is so lightweight that it brags compatibility with Pentium systems. Continued releases ensure stability and simplicity.

Who should use this: Slackware Linux is best for seasoned Linux professionals. There are package managers, pkgtools and slackpkg. However, since Slackware by default boots into a command line environment, it’s a more advanced Linux server operating system. Furthermore, there’s a bit of complexity in its simplicity. You really have to know your way around a Linux environment to thrive in Slackware.

10. Gentoo

Gentoo-2Image Credit:

Gentoo differs from many Linux distributions. Rather than the traditional release model, Gentoo features a modular design. Thus, users pick the installed features. This is precisely why Gentoo stands as a top Linux server operating system. Gentoo: A Linux Distribution Where You Compile Your Own Optimized Software Gentoo: A Linux Distribution Where You Compile Your Own Optimized Software The sheer number of different ways in which Linux can be run is astounding, as there are plenty of choices to go around. While there are plenty of distributions which rely on either the .deb... Read More

Each install is unique. Users can build a kernel which affords much more control. Therefore, aspects such as memory consumption may be controlled for a server. Because of this modular design and flexibility, Gentoo achieves major popularity with Linux pros. System administrators notably appreciate the tailored approach that Gentoo affords.

Who should use this: Gentoo is best for tech savvy users and system administrators. Although Gentoo may be used by beginners, it’s less entry-level than the average Ubuntu derivative. But documentation is superb and Gentoo benefits from a thriving community.

11. Fedora

Server-OS-Linux-FedoraImage Credit: Wikipedia

If you’re looking for a fresh Linux server operating system, try Fedora. With the support of Red Hat, the Fedora Project receives regular updates. Upstream communities contribute frequently. Fedora comes in several flavors. Workstation caters to general users and comes with a desktop environment. By default Fedora Workstation arrives with GNOME, but others are also available. Fedora Server focuses on, well, servers.

The default Fedora Server install lacks a GUI. However, you may install one if you don’t plan to run a headless server. The Server edition boasts a multitude of tools. There’s the Cockpit system management dashboard. Database services like PostgreSQL are included in Fedora Server.

Who should use this: Seasoned Linux developers and system administrators should pick Fedora Server. Its lack of a default desktop environment and enterprise-class features mean Fedora is better for advanced servers. Debating between Fedora, CentOS, and openSUSE? Check out this comparison of openSUSE, Fedora, and CentOS. Fedora vs. openSUSE vs. CentOS: Which Distribution Should You Use? [Linux] Fedora vs. openSUSE vs. CentOS: Which Distribution Should You Use? [Linux] Not too long ago I wrote a similar article about the top three distributions of the Debian side in the Linux family (Debian, Ubuntu, and Linux Mint), but as a true Linux geek I would... Read More

12. Debian

Debian-serverImage Credit: Wikipedia

Okay, so Debian lacks a specific server release. Nevertheless, Debian is one of the best Linux server operating systems available. Because Debian launched in 1993 and saw its first stable release in 1996, it’s incredibly secure. Many Linux distributions including Ubuntu are Debian-based. Why use Debian as the foundation of another operating system? Stability.

Accordingly, Debian is often used for servers because of its time-tested resilience. Debian features a package manager, APT tools, and various frontends such as GDebi. So while Debian doesn’t come with a server flavor, it’s perfect for a do-it-yourself Linux server operating system. Debian boasts impressive application compatibility, security, and stability.

Who should use this: Debian offers a fantastic server environment for two parties. If you’re looking for a basic server, like a mail, web, game, or media server, Debian is pretty simple to set up. Alternately, more advanced users with specific server needs should consider Debian. However, this approach does require DIY work. Learn more about Debian vs. Ubuntu, and how far Ubuntu has progressed. Debian vs Ubuntu: How Far Has Ubuntu Come in 10 Years? Debian vs Ubuntu: How Far Has Ubuntu Come in 10 Years? Ubuntu is now 10 years old! The king of Linux distributions has come a long way since its inception in 2004, so let's look at how it has developed differently to Debian, the distribution upon... Read More

The Best Linux Server Operating Systems

Although you can find many Linux server operating systems, each is best for a different set of users. Moreover, a non-server LTS release functions perfectly well as a Linux server operating system. Debian is a great example. While it’s not specifically a server distro, Debian boasts the characteristics of a server distribution. Namely, stability and security.

For beginners or merely simple server set up, I’d recommend any Debian-based distro or Ubuntu derivative. For all of my media and game servers, I use Ubuntu derivatives. This affords maximum compatibility with the software I run, and allows me to create home theatre PC/media server combos

12 Best Operating Systems For Ethical Hacking And Penetration Testing | 2017 Edition

Short Bytes: Wondering which is the best operating system for ethical hacking and pen testing purposes? Trying to solve this problem, Fossbytes has prepared a list of the most efficient Linux distros for hacking purposes that you need to check out in 2017. This list includes Linux distros like Kali Linux, Parrot Security OS, BlackArch, etc.

It’s time to pause the archaic Windows vs. OS X vs. Linux discussion and switch over to some advanced operating systems dedicated to pen testing and ethical hacking. A security-focused operating system is a hacker’s best friend as it helps them to detect the weaknesses in computer systems or computer networks. In this article, we have listed 2017’s top 12 operating systems for ethical hacking and penetration testing.

Before going ahead and reading out the list of Linux distros for ethical hacking, don’t miss other useful lists:

Here is the list of 12 best Linux distributions for hacking along with their download links. All of these are based on Linux Kernel and free to use. Let’s take a look:

12 Best Operating Systems For Ethical Hacking And Penetration Testing | 2017 Edition

Kali Linux:

kali best hacking distro operating system

Developed by Offensive Security as the rewrite of BackTrack, Kali Linux distro tops our list of the best operating systems for hacking purposes. This Debian-based OS comes with 600+ preinstalled pen testing tools that make your security toolbox richer. These versatile tools are updated regularly and are available for different platforms like ARM and VMware. For a forensic job, this top hacking operating system comes with a live boot capability that provides a perfect environment for vulnerability detection. Now Kali Linux is based on a rolling release model

Download Kali Linux

Parrot Security OS:

parrot best hacking distro operating system

Debian-based Parrot Security OS is developed by Frozenbox’s team. This cloud-friendly Linux distribution is designed for ethical hacking, pen testing, computer forensics, ethical hacking, cryptography etc. Compared to others, Parrot Security OS promises a lightweight OS that is highly efficient. Along with its plethora of legally recognized tools, you also get the opportunity to work and surf anonymously.


For those who don’t know, Parrot Security OS is a mixture of Frozenbox OS and Kali Linux. The OS uses Kali repos for updating its tools, but it has its own dedicated repo for storing the custom packets. It comes with MATE desktop environment and the powerful interface is derived from famous Gnome 2. This highly customizable hacking oeprating system also comes with a strong community support.

Download Parrot Security OS


backbox-linux- best hacking distro operating system

BackBox Linux is an Ubuntu-based operating system with its focus on security assessment and penetration testing. BackBox Linux comes with a wide range of security analysis tools that help you in web application analysis, network analysis etc. This fast and easy to use hackers’ favorite Linux distro comes with a complete desktop environment. The software repos of the hacking tools in this hacking operating system are regularly updated with the most stable versions.

Download BackBox Linux

Samurai Web Testing Framework:

samurai best hacking distro operating system

Samurai Web Testing Framework is basically a live Linux environment that comes pre-configured to work as a web pen-testing platform. The framework contains multiple free and open source hacking tools for detecting vulnerabilities in websites. It’s often called the best operating system for Web Penetration Testing.

Download Samurai Web Testing Framework

Pentoo Linux:

pentoo best hacking distro operating system

Based on Gentoo Linux, Pentoo is a pen testing operating system that is available as a 32 and 64-bit installable Live CD. You can also use Pentoo on top of an existing Gentoo Linux installation. This XFCE-based distro comes with persistence support that allows you to save all the changes you make before running off a USB stick.

This excellent hacking operating system comes with a wide variety of tools that fall under categories like Exploit, Cracker, Database, Scanner etc. This Gentoo derivative inherits the Gentoo Hardened feature set that brings additional control and configuration.

Download Pentoo Linux

DEFT Linux:

deft best hacking distro operating system

The open source Linux distribution DEFT stands for Digital Evidence and Forensic Toolkit. It’s based on Ubuntu and built around the DART (Digital Advanced Response Toolkit) software. It comes with many popular forensic tools and documents that can be used by ethical hackers, penetration testers, IT security specialists, and other individuals.

Download DEFT Linux


caine best hacking distro operating system

Caine is an Ubuntu-based security-focused distro that is available as a live disk. It stands for Computer Aided Investigation Environment and can also be run from the hard disk after installation. This Linux distro comes with a wide range of tools to help you in system forensics.


Caine comes with a large number of database, memory, forensics, and network analysis applications. This distro for ethical hacking also features common applications like web browsers, email clients, document editors etc. for usual computing purposes.

Download Caine

Network Security Toolkit (NST):

nst011 best hacking distro operating system

Network Security Toolkit is a Fedora-based Linux distro that runs on 32 and 64-bit platforms. This bootable live CD was created to give you an access to the best open source network security applications for pen testing purposes. This easy-to-use hacking distro easily converts the x86 systems into an ethical hacking machine that is helpful in intrusion detection, network traffic sniffing, network packet generation, network/host scanning etc.

Download Network Security Toolkit

BlackArch Linux:

blackarch best hacking distro operating systemblackarch best hacking distro operating system

BlackArch Linux is available as a complete Linux distribution for security researchers and ethical hackers. It’s derived from Arch Linux and one can also install the BlackArch Linux components on top of it.

The constantly growing repo of this useful operating system for hacking purposes is stuffed with more than 1400 tools that are thoroughly tested before being added to the codebase.

Download BlackArch Linux



Available in Debian, Ubuntu, and OpenSuSe, Bugtraq is famous for its electronic mailing list that is purely dedicated to computer security. The issues that are covered are vulnerability discussion, security-related announcements, exploitation methods etc. The Bugtraq Team consists of experienced hackers and developers that offer a great service for ethicals and pen testers.

Bugtraq comes with tons of pen testing tools including mobile forensic tools, malware testing tools and other software developed by the Bugtraq-Community.

Download Bugtraq

ArchStrike Linux:

ArchStrike is a great Linux distribution for hacking purposes. It’s a penetration testing and security layer on top of the popular Arch Strike Linux distro. This ethical hacking operating system follows the Arch Linux philosophy very closely. It should be noted that unlike other Linux-based distros on this list, ArchStrike isn’t a standalone Linux distro. Instead, it’s an Arch Linux repository for security professionals with tons of pen testing tools.

ArchStrike website

Fedora Security Spin:

Fedora Security Spin acts as a safe test environment for working on security auditing, system rescue, and teaching purposes. It’s maintained by a community of security testers and developers. Powered by the popular lightweight Xfce Desktop Environment, Fedora Security Spin comes with all the important security tools you’ll need. It has firewalls, network analyzer, password crackers, intrusion prevention, forensics, password tools, etc. Some of the featured applications in this Linux distribution for hacking are Etherape, Ettercap, Medusa, Nmap, Scap-workbench, Skipfish, Sqlninja, Wireshark, and Yersinia.

Fedora Security Spin website

Did you find our list of the best operating systems/Linux distributions for hacking purposes useful? Share your views in the comments below.

Over 13 years on webdesigns. HOSTING

GNU General Public License, GNU GPL
Anarchista Thomas Horkel {©} 2004 - 2017