Thoughts on Clear Linux?

Phoronix just published some new benchmarks in which, yet again, Clear Linux did extremely well, even with an AMD processor.
I looked briefly at some of the reviews, and I am curious. Michael Larrabe at Phoronix seems to really like it, and InfinitelyGalactic thinks it could be a replacement for Ubuntu.

Who is Clear Linux for?
Is it a choice for everyday desktop users, or only serious programmers?
Is my curiosity just an example of a shiny new thing?

From a first recherche I had to learn this first thing:
ClearOS ain’t Clear Linux. These are 2 entirely different operating systems.

I found Clear Linux’ official website.

Clear Linux OS is an open source, rolling release Linux distribution optimized for performance and security, from the Cloud to the Edge, designed for customization, and manageability.

Reading this, it is clear (ha ha) to me that this cannot be a replacement for Ubuntu or, to be precise, for a user-friendly desktop OS leader. Generic John Does don’t want a fast system (which sacrifices comfortability, proof #1 is Microsoft, because it is damn slow and yet successful) and they don’t care about security. Like at all. Last time someone told me their password, it was one of the most used words plus a single digit. These people seriously don’t care about security. (Until they are actually a victim of their own ignorance, but that is a different story.)

The John Doe guy wants

  1. Comfortability
  2. Simplicity

Any software that focuses on speed, will never be as comfortable as software that focuses on being simple and/or comfortable. That’s a fact.

Secondly, customizability is always a thing for advanced users, or at least users that not necessarily know a lot about computers but due to whatever reasons have to use it truly a lot. Not every Joe uses their computer more than 2 hours a day. Therefore, this Joe wants a streamlined experience, that does not need to be customized. Prime examples of trying to reach this goal are macOS and Windows. Both are very limited in terms of customization, because they try to streamline the experience as much as possible for the generic non-technical ape in front of the computer.

Conclusion: Clear Linux is nowhere near being a desktop operating system for the masses. It is light-years away.

I also may add, that any new OS that is not based on APT/DEB is so far behind in terms of compatibility and establishment, that there seems no way for any OS to have an independent package system and be the mainstream OS at the same time. You either have to base your OS for the masses on Debian/Ubuntu or get billions over billions of dollars from your government or your government makes a new law that you actually are forced to use this OS (Sounds crazy, but something similar already happened with Texas Instruments.). If none of the preceding measures happen, your OS will de facto never be closely as successful as Debian or Ubuntu among the masses. It just is impossible at this time and probably also in the next 10 years, at least.

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There is Clear OS which is a business thingy and Clear Linux, both of which have been reviewed on Distrowatch. It might be worth while taking a look on there. I don’t know if @abhishek knows anything about them or has reviewed them on Its Foss at all.

Nowt wrong with being curious, even if it is meant to have killed the cat, if it adds to your knowledge why not give it a look at

There is one thing, if you use some not so known OS, there is a good chance you will be stranded in the middle with no solution. For example, a lot apps do not work on non-LTS versions of Ubuntu. ie, even with a popular distro as Ubuntu, unpopular versions are not supported by regular apps. Personally, I will recommend at least a semi-popular distro or OS for your day to day use.

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Very good point to mention @meetdilip thanks for doing so


I don’t know about that, yum/rpm seems pretty well established in my experience, across RedHat, Oracle, CentOS and Fedora (dnf in this case)… but having said that - I don’t use RPM based distros on the desktop, but most of the servers I support do… haven’t used Fedora on the desktop since 2012…

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I feel pretty much the same and I mean, if you would compare how much random information you get on the internet about doing something on Ubuntu for example and how much on Fedora for example, then you would definitely find way more stuff explained that fits Ubuntu users.

Additionally, Red Hat / RPM/DNF based systems are more of a niche thing, per sé, as far as I can tell.
Here is what I can conclude from my experience in simple terms:

  1. Red Hat is one of the standard server distributions, especially for enterprise environments
  2. CentOS is Red Hat for a cent
  3. Fedora is Red Hat in alpha development stage
  4. Oracle spreads out its claws everywhere, even into Red Hat
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Most of the “help” and many of the solutions out there for Linux problems, are from Ubuntu users/forums, but having written that, let me write this: quite often I’ll find solutions provided by the Arch Wikis…

Isn’t one of Arch Linux’ main selling points, that it has huge package and community support, like e.g. the Wiki where they try to explain as much as possible? At least that is what I remember about Arch Linux.
The problem I have personally seen is that if I had to read a solution related to Arch Linux, which did not happen often, it was mostly not applicable to the distribution I was using. Other than that, I don’t really know which general OS directory structure Arch Linux is closest to.