I’m ditching Windows in favor of Linux on my personal desktop. And so I’m looking for advice on which distro I should start with.

About Me

I use Linux professionally all the time but mostly to build ci/cd pipelines and for software development/operations. I’ve never been a Linux admin nor have I ever chosen the distro I use. I’m generally comfortable using Linux and digging into configs/issues as needed.

Planned Usage

I use this machine for typical home usage: Firefox, a notes app (currently Notesnook), maybe office style tools like word and excel. I also use this for gaming: Steam, Discord, etc. Lastly and least important, I use this for a small amount of dev work: VSCode, various languages, possibly running containers.

What I’m Looking For

I’d like an OS that’s highly configurable but ships with good default settings and requires very little effort to start using. I don’t want it to ship with loads of applications; I want to choose and install all of the higher level tools. Shipping with a configured desktop is perfectly fine but not required. Ideally, I can have all of this while still keeping the maintenance low. I think that means a stable OS, a good package manager, stable/automatic updates, etc.

Last bit. Open source is rather important to me. I prefer free and free.

Anyone have good suggestions??


I’m aware of tools like Distro Chooser. They’ve recommended Arch Linux and Endeavor OS to me so far. But I’m not ready to trust them yet. I’m looking for human input.

Edit 2: Hardware Info

I’m running on an ASUS ROG Strix GA15DK. It’s just over 2 years old. The hardware was shiny but not top-tier at the time. It’s not new at this point but also not old by Linux standards.

  • AMD Ryzen 7 5800X Processor
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070
  • 16GB DDR4 3200 MHz RAM

Edit 3

It’s official. I installed EndeavourOS! I got it to work without any issues. Yup, first try. It definitely didn’t take me ~10 tries :D

Thanks for all the input all! Wonderful crowd here!!!