Every programmer needs to ask themselves several questions about their development environment which, when correctly answered, can make the job much more easier in the long run. One of the questions that needs to be considered is which operating system to use for programming. While certainly not the only choice, Linux is a fantastic platform for programmers. Here are several reasons why this is the case, and why you should keep Linux in your considerations.
1) Linux Is Free
Of course, one of the primary benefits that Linux offers is that it’s free. Especially if you’re just starting out with programming and haven’t built up much of a career yet, you most likely don’t have the money to shell out for the various software that you’d need on other platforms. This isn’t necessarily a technical benefit for programmers, but hey, financial benefits are worth taking into account as well. :P
2)It’s Easy To Get Linux And Install It
Nowadays Linux has become extremely easy to obtain and install (besides some distributions which have different philosophies), and it works virtually on any hardware. Just pick one of the more popular distributions (if you aren’t sure which one, a safe choice is Ubuntu or Mint), download the ISO file (which, again, is completely free), write it to a USB drive or burn it to a DVD, and boot off of that media to go through the installer. If you have another operating system already installed, you can also choose to dual-boot between the two operating systems so you can use Linux for programming and your other OS for anything else.
3) Support For Most Programming Languages
Linux has lots of support for all sorts of languages. Unless it’s known for being specific to a certain platform (such as Visual Basic for Windows or Objective-C for Mac OS/iOS), then the chances that you can get it on Linux are extremely high. C/C++, Java, PHP, Ruby, Python, Perl, and so many more all work perfectly in Linux.
If a specific language that you’d like to use isn’t already installed by default, you can (except for very rare instances) just get the necessary packages straight from your distribution’s repositories. Just look through the package manager for the name of the language you’re looking for, and you should be able to find it.