Is distrohopping in Linux becoming a thing of the past?

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In today's open source roundup: Distrohopping may be losing popularity among Linux users. Plus: A Linux user switches to Mac then comes back, and a journalist laments the headaches of recompiling the Linux kernel

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One of the best things about Linux is that there are so many distributions to choose from, unlike corporate-controlled operating systems such as Windows or OS X. And historically many Linux users have switched frequently between distros, but is distrohopping becoming a thing of the past? Steven Rosenberg has taken a stand against distrohopping and explains why he doesn't do it.

According to Steven Rosenberg:

But the idea of doing a full installation of a totally new Linux distro, bringing all of my user files into the new installation, setting up all of the services and applications I use all the time with my old configuration files (or re-creating them from scratch) and then figuring out how to fix all the things that are broken for me, my hardware and software?

I'm not excited by that. So I stay with Fedora.

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It saddens me to see someone so dead set against distrohopping, but I can understand where he's coming from since it can be a real time-suck if you do it frequently. But I think it's quite possible to find a main distro to stay with while still allowing yourself the geekish pleasure of using many other distros.

All you really need to do is install VirtualBox on your main distro. Once you've done that you can install as many different distributions as you want in VirtualBox, and run them that way. And if you keep a lot of your user files in the cloud, then you should be easily able to access them regardless of the distribution you happen to be using at that moment.

So rather than write distrohopping off altogether, I suggest that folks do it in a way that works for them. You can keep your main distribution, but also sample other Linux distros whenever you want with very little effort. And when you get tired of one of your other distributions, you can just delete it from VirtualBox and replace it with something else.

There's no way to know how many other distrohoppers have followed the same path as the writer of the article. But I sure hope that his choice hasn't caught on among many Linux users. It will be a very sad day in the world of Linux when the last distrohopper stops hopping. I hope it never happens.

A Linux user goes Mac and then comes back

A redditor details how he abandoned Linux for the Mac, and then boomeranged back.

According to Reddit:

I used Vector Linux up until 2006, when I decided that I wanted a Mac and worked all summer to buy myself a little Mac Mini. In my mind it was the best computer on the market. I downloaded xcode and interface builder and got started on learning Obj-C/Cocoa programming.

Now, in 2014, I am back on Linux. I got myself a HP Touchsmart 610, got rid of that horrid thing they call Windows and installed Kubuntu 14.04. I still have my Macbook Air, but I think I might sell it. I haven't opened it in a week.

More at Reddit
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