Zorin Pro vs other distros

I have a question about Linux distros. I'm happy with ZorinOS and I even purchased the Pro version. Whenever I talk to people who use Linux, they all tell me "You should use Debian", or "Just install Ubuntu". What is the difference? Ubuntu is based on Debian, Zorin is based on Ubuntu, so what's the big deal? What is the big deal about using Ubuntu vs Zorin?
Additionally, if I'm reading a book or an article about doing something on Ubuntu, will it still work the same way in Zorin?

Anything Ubuntu 20 based will work in Zorin Core. I say that because the lite version uses XFCE and is equivalent to Xubuntu 20.

Each distro that is released has its own pros and cons. Zorin has quality modifications that improve its speed and stability for most people. PopOS is equal to if not a little slower in its responsiveness. These modifications, from the base Debian or Ubuntu root, changes the way it is experienced. This changes what people like and promote. This may be an oversimplification, but true none the less.

Using any distro, including the base distros, is a matter of preference. I found ElementaryOS confusing and difficult, PopOS friendly and responsive (though geared more towards gaming), and MX was a bit "dated" to me (though it supported all of my hardware...that was just my take). So I found and became comfortable with Zorin. But I didn't care for Gnome or XFCE. So I changed that to KDE.

Either way, preference and a users experience drive them to support specific distros. Some even fanatically. But it is still an opinion and should be taken as such. This is no different than someone swearing by WinXP or 7, hating on Win10 or 11. It is all a matter of perspective and experience.

Tell them to kick rocks, or don't...but use what you are comfortable with and you find the most productivity. Because that really is the most basic need to be resolved...can I do this comfortably so I can be efficient and productive. Whether it is to watch movies, play games, do homework or actual business....you will do each faster and more reliably if you are using something you are comfortable with and it is stable for your use.


For me, I'm comfortable with Zorin Pro. I've tried to install Ubuntu, and Debian, but I didn't really like them as much. I've use Linux Mint, and liked it, but Zorin still looks a bit more user friendly for me. Right now my Distros of choice are Zorin for a daily driver, and then Kali for my Ethical Hacking training.


You also need to remember that Zorin, whilst it aims to attract Linux and Mac users as much as Windows, I believe one of the primary goals is to make the transition from Windows to be as painless as possible. This is what attracted me to Zorin at release 4.0 which is where I started, because Freespire (the Community Edition of Linspire) had been killed off by its creator, Michael Robertson. It was a real shame as the developer responsible for 'Click'n'Run' had just got it working flawlessly when Robertson sold Linspire off to Xandros, who had bought Corel Linux after Corel dropped Linux development in 2001. Only a short time after, Xandros bit the bullet and died. It was a real shame. Freespire was a brilliant community edition:

So I was desperately looking to support a distribution that was friendly towards Windows users, the rest is history. After only 6 weeks of helping on the forum I was promoted to Moderator, little knowing how much time I would be devoting to this onerous yet honourable elevation.
You also have to consider too, that Zorin is aiming at Corporate customers too, and clearly a Desktop that is not too alien from that used by Corporates and easy to manage with the Zorin Grid.
I fully support the idea that Zorin is the best way forward for Windows migrators, and once they become accustomed to how GNU/Linux works, to embrace other distributions.
Ironically, Freespire is back in circulation, but looks nothing like its ancestor. It was picked up by Black Lab(rador) OS/PC OpenSystems. They are trying to make money from Linspire but there is also the free Freespire version. It uses xfce as the primary DE.
I have just found this page:

I think Zorin needs to sue them for stating that Zorin does not use Ubuntu LTS - shame on them!

What I like about ZorinPro is it takes the great Ubuntu foundation and extends ease of use and the integration of Wine software to make it a great general purpose OS for users. It presents an easy transition from Windows but provide a great user experience. It connects to home network and home servers easier than Windows and it is very stable and reliable. Our primary computer is a Mac, but we use the ZorinOS box as the common family computer. Wife shops and does email - kids write papers, son programs on it and we use it to play music on our Sonos speakers. Zorin takes that extra step where Ubuntu leaves off and produces a smooth and reliable OS.

I'd say there are some pretty good replies so far!

I've been distro hopping since late 2004ish, and Zorin has been the only one so far that I've used and just stuck with for more than a few months. It's been my main OS for the last 3 years! :grin:

Like the layout, stability, look / feel - I've got some Win11 icons and mouse theme.. If someone were to use it that didn't know it was Zorin - they would never know lol it's that good.

I'm sticking with it; I've got one machine with Mint MATE, and my Mums old laptop with Zorin15 Lite :smirk: Doesn't quite work with anything newer. Speaking of MATE - I'd love to see MATE for Zorin sometime!


I'd like that too.


I've tried Mate, but couldn't feel the desire for it. I would much prefer KDE Plasma over Mate.

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I always break plasma lol KDE was okay - Suse9 was my favorite for KDE. Then they put out 10.1 with plasma and... I just couldn't do it. I did try though.

MATE is kinda more of a 'classical' Ubuntu feel, I think. Also better HW support - and very, very, very stable. I've got Mint MATE on two devices, one I don't have at the moment being loaned out - but even for an older 2009 MacBook, installed Mint MATE 21.1 without any issue. Just had to install WiFi and webcam drivers. The other is a newer machine that doesn't like 5.15.x or 5.19.x kernels - at all. 6.2.x and up for that one... stupid 'SMART' sound technology :unamused: .. And WiFi, apparently an 'internal USB' WiFi? :person_shrugging:..... weird. But, works! lol And it's not hard to theme - I've got the same Win11 icon / cursor theme I'm using now in Zorin. Have seen / heard a lot of people having issues with themes :thinking:... but not sure how.

It's all preference, really. I like the simplistic layout of MATE, HW support, functionality - which, Zorin hits all of those marks very well, direct center. I'm just more happy to see there's more than just a few options out there :wink: I don't have money to keep buying the 'update' stuff every 5 years lol and absolutely don't see any reason to pay for software that's free and available to use; some very good alternatives, or direct copies of the original software..

But, it's all good! :grin:


I put MX-Linux 23.1 KDE on eldest's reclaimed Notebook, a Dell Latitude E6500 which originally had Vista on it. Preferred font is Comic Sans and this has been applied system-wide, due to changes in vision as a consequence of Lupus. Also prefers white font on black background and after some delving managed to configure Evolution with this colour scheme. Themed it on Windows 11 which they have on their desktop. I installed something similar to sweet icons for the Panel which they can manage. Plasma is now at 5.27 and in Appearance now has Boot Splash option where you can download new ones, not present in 5.18.

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Personally I can't stand Mate. It feels like been drawn back to 1995. Each to his own I guess.


Wow, these are some great answers. I've only had issues with Zorin on one machine, and it turns out it was that machine that was the problem. My ADHD brain keeps going back to Linux Mint because that's what I used in the past, but I don't know why. Zorin is a great system and the support is wonderful. I don't see any reason to hop anymore.

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