So in preparation of the Framework 16, I was wondering if there was a specific Linux OS that would be better for gaming (Other than SteamOS).
This is of course due to the fact that I plan on switching to using Linux on the 16 as my main OS, but I want to familiarize myself with Linux before hand, so is there any recommendations for gaming specifically?
If there aren’t really any better options, that would also be appreciated info!
(P.S I don’t really play games that often, so if need be I would use a partition for windows for gaming)
For starters that want a new experience from windows/mac, I recommend PopOS. It’s based off of Ubuntu, and has some decent new user experience setup. This makes the transition easier for people who want to try things out.
For a more windows-like experience, I recommend Linux Mint (the default cinnamon version) , as it is also based on Ubuntu, but has a windows-like look to it, with great flow for getting users familiar with linux.
Of both linux ditro’s listed above, both need a bit of setup to be gaming ready, but have the least friction to settle in. For gaming, I guess there’s ChimeraOS and HoloISO, but I’ve never tried them before.
[I’ll start with a question, how familiar are you with Linux and Linux terminology? What follows may or may not make sense to you. Please ask questions. The sky is the limit with Linux and you can make any distro tailored to you depending on how much effort you want to put in.]
You might see distros advertised for gaming but there isn’t anything special in them. The only that a “gaming” distro truly needs is to quickly vet kernel and mesa updates basically. You can install Steam or Wine on basically any distro. You basically want access to bug fixes and updates as quickly as you can get them without needing to muck around with stuff yourself.
If you haven’t heard of ProtonDB, check them out. You can even have the tool crawl your (assuming public) Steam profile to give you a customized list of how compatible with Proton your games are. If you use GOG or Epic for your games then I highly recommend the Heroic Games Launcher. It has seamless integration for both of those stores to launch your games from.
As for what distro I recommend? Fedora, every time. KDE spin over the stock GNOME version but I hear good things about XFCE as well. Never used XFCE in any way so I can’t comment on it. I didn’t much care for GNOME and historically GNOME hasn’t been that easy to customize if something about it annoys you (touchpad scrolling speed is a common complaint I’ve seen).
If the above terminology is confusing, feel free to ask more questions, the Linux crowd here is pretty friendly and won’t be dicks for you being a noob. We were all new once. I got my start with Ubuntu when I first dipped my toes into Linux.
Yeah, I am a bit familiar with basic Linux terminology (not too much tho, but I did trying using Ubuntu once on an old computer)
And thanks for pointing out that thing about tailoring any distro, that was one of the thing s I was wondering about using Linux.
I was also thinking about using Fedora, since that is one of the OSes that was supported by Framework, I just wasn’t sure if there would be any meaningful differences for gaming (which, as you pointed out, aren’t)
I’m happy to hear that the Linux crowd is friendly, that is always a nice thing to hear.
Again, thanks for the info, and I’ll be sure to ask questions if need be!
@Mason_Adams Actually, this thread is kinda common question, so I think I’ll create a nice flowchart that should help new users settle on a distro choice. Or at lest attempt to help. It’ll be pretty high-level so anyone can understand it. I’ll link to it once I’ve made it.
If you want to check all the desktop environments, you can probably give openSUSE Tumbleweed a go (a rolling distro). It has them all, or almost all. Also a lot of official repos at software.opensuse.org. Be sure to add Packman from the start, as it contains the bad licensed codecs, that are not included in the official release.
@Bundyo I didn’t include OpenSUSE as it seemed less beginner-friendly although I did consider it, it is the only distro that is not itself a derivative besides Fedora. Honestly, based upon what I’ve heard of OpenSUSE, I’d probably rate it equivalently difficult as Fedora. Which is to say, not awful but unlike Fedora it lack official support or even community support.
Unpopular opinion; pretty much any ‘beginner’ distro will work fine. They’re all based on the same Kernel and GNU userland. Maybe a ‘gamer’ distro releases kernel updates a bit quicker and may have a GUI tool to install closed source Nvidia drivers. And Gnome, the most popular desktop environment, may be styled a bit differently.
Ah, I see. There is one thread for openSUSE around (almost everything works, as in Fedora), maybe just needs to be structured and added to that wiki. Of course, someone should have the time to do it and that is not me.
use the distribution with the best community support and that is easiest to install and maintain. ignore all recommendations for niche distributions. the most used according to steam surveys (besides steamos) are ubuntu, arch, manjaro and fedora.
if you’re “just starting”, fedora and ubuntu (in this order) are fine.
Something else to keep in mind - security. Unless a user wants to go through the hassle of signing their own kernels and enrolling their own keys (in which casse they should know enough not to need help) I would only EVER suggest a distro that supports Secure Boot OOTB. So that rules out most distros except, you guessed it, Fedora and Ubuntu. Also OpenSUSE I think and a (very) few select others but literally everything that is in community support lacks Secure Boot support I think.
I saw Fedora mentioned as a contender, so I’ll add that there’s a Fedora-based project called Nobara designed to be friendlier to gaming. I haven’t used Nobara, but my Fedora experience on the framework has been great: