Solus - General DIscussion

Hi there. I thought I’d make a general thread for this wonderful OS. I have been distro hopping since I began using Linux back in 2012. However, this one made me stay. It’s an independent distro that’s super high quality, I think it’s the 2nd most well-made OS I’ve used right after macOS. It’s desktop and 64 bit only, which makes the repos clean and server stuff free. The system is very stable whilst providing modern package versions. Besides its great default repos, it has snap installed by default and flatpak available as well. It comes in Budgie (it’s the original Budgie distro), GNOME and MATE variants. It’s very easy to use, provides useful GUI tools and automated scripts for installing third party applications.

Please note that you have to burn the ISO onto the USB drive in dd mode, and not iso mode.

Now some distrowatch info:

  • OS Type: Linux
  • Based on: Independent
  • Origin: Ireland
  • Architecture: x86_64
  • Desktop: Budgie, GNOME, MATE
  • Category: Beginners, Desktop, Live Medium
  • Status: Active
  • Popularity: 9 (693 hits per day)

Solus is a Linux distribution built from scratch. It uses a forked version of the PiSi package manager, maintained as “eopkg” within Solus, and a custom desktop environment called “Budgie”, developed in-house. The Budgie desktop, which can be set to emulate the look and feel of the GNOME 2 desktop, is tightly integrated with the GNOME stack. The distribution is available for 64-bit computers only.

That’s quite an endorsement! Damn it, now I really have to try it out :thinking:.

Why did you pick Solus over Ubuntu Budgie? Ubuntu is very well supported, with tons of packages and PPAs, while Solus… is not.


Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe Solus comes default with optimizations from Intel’s ClearLinux.

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It did as the old Dev built clear linux. Although not sure if there will be anything new added in that regard as he has left

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What is there in Ubuntu that’s not available for Solus specifically? What do you mean by “supported”? There are lots of packages for Solus as well, and they are in default repos, PPAs are a mess and a hell to deal with. Plus you get snaps and flatpaks for all the extra stuff.

I picked it over Ubuntu because Ubuntu was always buggy for me since about 5 years ago (previously I had a much better experience), crashes, funny stuff. Ubuntu has outdated software. Ubuntu isn’t rolling release, and upgrades to a new .10 or .04 version often break. The repo is generally a mess, with lots and lots of php packages for example, whilst on Solus you have on php package with all the plugins. Solus is also much faster than Ubuntu, people always wonder why it boots up and shuts down so quickly. Solus has really nice defaults, with a pretty theme, whilst Ubuntu’s theme looks like garbage.

@SesameStreetThug unfortunately I don’t know that

I’d be a shame if they didn’t continue with that. It was the major upside of the distro, from my perspective.

Solus has an order of magnitude less packaged applications available than Ubuntu. I was going to get an actual count to compare but their packaging site returns a “503 Backend is unhealthy” error right now, which is… well, not a great confidence builder.

Ubuntu boots up extremely quickly now, and of course Ubuntu Budgie also runs Budgie DE so it looks the same.

The website doesn’t work because they changed the domain from to, here is the working link:
The total number of packages on Solus is way smaller than on Ubuntu, but that’s a very bad way of measuring software availability. The number will always be much smaller for several reasons:

  1. Solus doesn’t include software needed for servers, which Ubuntu does. For example, there is a terribly outdated rails package on Ubuntu, a version from 2014. For some reason, it might be needed on servers, but the sane way of getting rails is by using Ruby’s gem package manager, that’s what developers do. It’s the same for other web frameworks and such.
  2. Solus doesn’t include old, unsupported and unused software. They have a very high standards for their repo.
  3. Solus maintainers package software in a way smarter way than Ubuntu does. For example, like I said before, you only have one php package with all extensions you need. However, Ubuntu packages php and all its extensions separately (there are like 20 extensions, if not more).

In conclusion, Ubuntu’s repo is a mess. The total number of packages that start with php for Ubuntu 18.10 is whopping 663 whilst on Solus it’s 3. It’s all because Ubuntu is a primarily server distro, so they package their software for that purpose. This approach is unnecessary for desktop, and can lead to a lot of confusion.

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The Solus Project domain was lost in the move. They are in the middle of reorganizing their staff and resources.

Solus has incredible support for development inspired users. I installed most of my tools through their software manager.

While this is kind of possible in Ubuntu, a slew of dependency issues tend to get in the way. I can’t say the same for Solus.

DKMS. I’m currently trying to get my Netgear WiFi adapter working in Solus but all the tutorials I found for other distros call for DKMS. MaybeI’m just stupid, but I just haven’t been able to find a solution for Solus, where as Ubuntu Forums offer some help. The Solus Forums, from what I’ve found, have basically said meh you’re outta luck. Buy a different adapter. So I basically have to be wired, which is fine for now, but I’m not sure what my furniture arrangement will look like when I move into my new apartment in a couple days.

Still, Solus has been the most reliable distro I’ve ever used, so I’m sticking with it. Getting my GTX 970 working was effortless. It may not have the vast amount of software that Ubuntu offers, but there’s never been a time where I broke shit simply by doing an update, which has happened to me with every other distro including Ubuntu.


Really? I’ve been using Ubuntu since Dapper and I’ve never had a minor update break my system, and only one major update ever had issues.

It was actually 18.10-- the upgrade itself failed for some reason and didn’t rollback, so I just did a manual apt-get dist-upgrade, prayed to Lord Satan, rebooted, and it worked, booting up in 18.10.

Yes. I’ve never looked into it in-depth, but I assume my issues have probably been hardware related. Not faulty hardware, just not Linux-friendly hardware. Problems on my laptops have been rare no matter what distro I’ve been using, but my desktop has never really gotten along well with anything except Solus.

I actually moved away from Ubuntu because Antergos seemed to work alright with my GPU out of the box, but then a couple updates later and that was bugging out as well. Maybe there’s something extra I’m supposed to do when using proprietary GPU drivers in Linux, but with Solus I haven’t had any issues just doing the basic sudo eopkg upgrade.

That explains it. I always picked my hardware based on proven compatibility.

Gigabyte mobo?

ASRock H170M Pro4

Ah. Your situation was identical to mine. Solus has been the only reprieve. Gigabyte Z97x-SLI, GTX 970, i7 4790k… Plagued with issues until Solus came around lol.

I’ve since upgraded some components, and I have a “modern” Intel rig for gaming and stuff. But that one is still a beast.

Still random issues with other distros though.

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You have a great point and I ask myself this sometimes (I’m coming up on my Solus anniversary).

On paper, I think the answer is rolling release.

Tbh, if there was a budgie fedora spin, that would probably be my ideal combo.


I’ve always found that Ubuntu goes for Quantity over Quality.

I found that Solus goes for Quality over Quantity.

I also found that both of them go too far in their respective directions.

That’s why I don’t use either currently, but have, at one point, enjoyed both.


This is the best answer, says the answer giver.