Choosing the Best Linux Server Distro (2022)

Originally published at: https://haydenjames.io/best-linux-server-distro/

Are you in the process of choosing a Linux server distro (distribution) for your next project? This article will help you decide by pointing out the strengths of the top Linux server distributions in contention. If you are looking for a Linux desktop distro, look at this post instead: Choosing the Best Linux Distro for…

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I am attempting to convert my boss to Linux. The business is on the smaller side (only about 15 of us working there) but I feel like Linux servers would prove to be a good asset to the company. Which would you recommend for a small company?

I can only say judged on my own(rather limited experience with enterprize servers) but ubuntu server is mostly a safe card that is easy to setup and it’s rather easy to expand.

Big + is that most people familiar with linux would learn it quickly and be able to operate it probably easier then say RHEL or other propriorty distros that has different package systems and perhaps a more “locked” community if the help is needed at sometime…

What you want is:

*Easy setup
*Easy expansion(if company is growing)
*Free(or at least cheap)
*Something that offers time to focus on earning in your business and not being fearful if the next update might “break” system or cause downtime aka hours for a dedicated man or female to make it run optimal again:)

As i dont know your prior experience my recommendation is pointing to Ubuntu or debian as it is stable and easy to work with👍 However if you are used to different OS as your bread and butter other distros might suit your needs as good:)

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I agree with you.

Since CentOS 8 was abandoned by Red Hat. I’ve slowly moved many CentOS 7 and CentOS 8 servers to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS and 22.04 LTS. For some of the very same reasons you gave.

I didn’t opt for CentOS Stream or Rocky Linux, etc., because in my opinion there are too many formative unknowns for long-term production projects. That’s arguable I’m sure. But I’ve had to upgrade servers from Ubuntu 12.04 and 14.04 recently, and other than Debian and RHEL, there aren’t many straight-upgrade server distros to choose from.

Linux server distros in the future

In the next 5 to 10 years, there could be acquisitions of many of these CentOS 7/8 alternatives. When we set up servers, we often expect them to be online 10 or 20 years from now. So for me, Ubuntu is currently the most value-flexible long-term choice.

Also, I prefer Ubuntu because Canonical offers Ubuntu Advantage, which allows you to choose the level of enterprise features and support you would like.

Red Hat has recently done similar by offering free entrance enterprise for up to # of servers, but what was the motive? Also, again in 10 years, will it change? I welcome their input.

After many years of running other distros, I’ve ended up primarily on Ubuntu. Canonical isn’t the greatest, there are many gripes, but overall, (again in my opinion) their approach to enterprise has been early to allow users to transition from free to paid more gradually, and à la carte.

I can write more freely about this stuff here in this setting because it’s opinionated, and as such, it’s easier to keep me honest in the forums than say on the blog. For example, if I write somewhat negatively about Red Hat or Rocky Linux, it’s just my one article headline and content that’s out there. That’s not responsible and there are many who will give valid reasons for them (and for others) which Rocky Linux and others would be better alternatives than Ubuntu/Canonical.

It’s great to read @KCT post and any others who add to the discussion because it allows readers and forum members - including myself - to gain a more holistic view of the Linux server distros space.

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This is something I will be pushing people to if they have any questions about choosing the right server for them. You really know your stuff. Happy to be a part of a community with someone this knowledgeable. If I ever set up a Linux server, I will be coming to you with questions!