Between Ubuntu, Fedora, and OpenSUSE, you have a choice of well-supported distributions with lots of up-to-date software and commercial backing, as well as a choice of almost any desktop environment like GNOME, Unity or KDE. There are many others, however. Linux Mint brings the stability of Ubuntu with a more familiar desktop for ex-Windows users, while Elementary OS gives a more simplified, streamlined desktop which may fare well with ex-Mac users.
There is a rising underdog, however, and it is awesome: Solus.
What Is Solus?
It was started in 2011, as “Solus OS” initially as a spin-off of Debian, featuring the GNOME 2 desktop. Development continued on this operating system, including on a new desktop environment, and it went through a couple of name changes, finally landing on just “Solus”.
Today, it is a fully-fledged, independent Linux distribution of its own, with its own desktop environment and repositories.
How To Install Solus Linux Distribution?
Once Solus is on the USB stick, things get much easier. It runs just fine off the USB stick, and installing it is a cinch with the Ubiquity installer, the same one used by Ubuntu and Linux Minx.
This notification center also hides the settings for the top panel, and one can easily change things, or move it to the right, left or the bottom. Users who wish to have more control over the overall look and feel of their desktop will be very pleased!
Solus Linux Distribution Support
Since Solus is a small project, they don’t have a lot of commercial support available. Users do have access a wiki with a fair amount of documentation, some forums which are rather well frequented, a Google+ community, and an IRC channel. As a test, I got onto the IRC channel and asked a few questions. This was very easy since if you are using Solus and click on the IRC link on their website, it opens up immediately in the IRC client.
Responses were fast and friendly. I assume that most problems that people have would easily be able to be solved by the people who frequent this channel.
Overall, Solus is a great operating system. It is stable, very easy to use, and it seems to have a wide selection of the latest software available in its own repositories. The best feature, for me at least, is definitely its Budgie desktop environment. It is simple, yet can still be customized by power users. It is fast and sleek, yet it still makes use of modern GNOME technologies.
Solus is awesome, yet the only thing that lets it down is not the operating system or the developers’ faults: its installed base. The most users an operating system has the more community support and solutions offered. Ubuntu and Linux Mint users can quickly and easily find solutions to their problems with a few searches on Google, while Solus users will probably have to go to the developers themselves if they get stuck.
All in all, a great operating system with a bright future. I would recommend it to anyone in a heartbeat.