Best Linux Distro for Writing Machine


New Member
May 19, 2024
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Hey Linux People,

first post here :)

So, I have maybe a little bit of an unusual question. I have this quite old Thinkpad, that is still working quite well, except for being not very powerfull. But I'm a writer, so I thought, maybe I can “build” kind of a simple writing machine with nothing much on the Thinkpad than what I need for writing.

In the past I used different distros, mostly I worked with Manjaro. But now I thought: maybe is there some kind of “rudimentary basic Linux distro” I could use? Like I really don't need anything very visual. As long as I can use a programm to create text and text-like files and connect to the internet to save stuff -- that’s all I need.

Does someone maybe have an idea?


as far as i see it you have 2 options,
1] if you feel Linux competent, then start with the Kernel and build your own be-spoke distribution just for publishing.
2]start with a full-blown distribution and hack out the apps you do not need and install any you do.

this quite old Thinkpad,
Hopefully it is post 2010 and a 64 bit machine, as 32 bit support id due to end in the next 12 months.
Hello @bertrandterrier,
Welcome to the forum, enjoy the journey!
Perhaps a minimal install of Antix would do what you want. I believe Ubuntu and it's spins also have minimal install options. Which will give you the basics and then you can add the text editor or word processor of your choice.
this page may be of help

or this
Is there a more frequent question that.. "what is the best distro for... ?"

All distro's use the same kernel, some have slightly newer kernel versions, some have slightly older kernel versions.
But it's all the same kernel. Older versions tend to be more stable. Newer versions tend to have more features and more drivers.

So then it's the desktop or the packages that make a distro unique?
No, almost all of them have the same office suite, the same browser, the same Wine, the same printer drivers,
the same network/Wi-Fi drivers. You can get MATE, or KDE, or XFce, or Gnome on almost any major distro.
Almost all of the packages of one distro are available for another distro.

In my experience, it all comes down to what package manager do you like?
If you like snap, use Ubuntu, If you like apt use Mint/Debian. If you like yum/dnf use Redhat/Fedora.
If you like yast/zypper use SuSE. But really, other than the background graphic images, they are basically
the same. It really doesn't matter which one you use.

I've heard people this one is better, or that one crashes too often, or the wi-fi didn't work with that one.
It's all the same kernel, with the same drivers. There really is no difference.

I've have 7 computers running seven different versions of Linux. None crash more than any other.
None have any packages that I can't install on the other. There really is no difference.

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