System76, a Linux PC vendor, has announced the launching of its own operating system called Pop!_OS. The system is based on Ubuntu GNOME 17.04 with access to repositories of “open source software and development tools”. The first release is planned for October 19, 2017, meanwhile Pop!_OS Alpha version is already available for download.
Pop!_OS, a Linux distribution built for creators, according to System76,
“is designed for people who use their computer to create; whether it’s complicated, professional grade software and products, sophisticated 3D models, computer science in academia, or makers working on their latest invention. “
Pop!_OS uses Pop GTK theme and icon set. The distro has borrowed a lot from GNOME shell. The branding and theming are the only major difference that can be seen between Pop!_OS and Ubuntu with GNOME.
Why a new Linux distribution?
According to Carl Richell, the CEO of System76, the aim of Pop!_OS is to make Linux desktops “as productive as possible for engineering, devops, and computer science fields where Linux excels”.
The biggest question now is why is System76 creating another Linux distribution when they can use other elementary OS or even Linux Mint? Swapnil Bhartiya tries to answer this in an article in ConsumeIT.
Pop!_OS can cater to the needs of System76’s customers. Some of the customers that use System76 hardware include Pixar, Aleph Objects which produces Lulbot 3D printer, Tesla and some Amazon and Google departments.
According to Ryan Sipes, System76 Community Manager, “We know who our customers are and what kind of problems they are trying to solve…We can tailor an experience for them that increases their productivity, and makes Pop!_OS their first choice for working on their projects.”
System76 is a relatively small company and hence can easily respond to its customer feedback and their needs. According to Snipes, “We’ve been focusing our engineering effort on helping our customers achieve more and have a fantastic computer experience.”
On why they didn’t choose an existing distro like Linux Mint, Snipes said Linux Mint and the other elementary OS are not for the users that they are targeting. He claims their projects are more focused on the “mainstream computer” users.
To System76, Pop!_OS was not built as an alternative to Windows or Mac operating systems that are for mainstream users. It was developed “for jobs where Linux excels which coincides with where the System76 customer base resides. That’s computer science fields of artificial intelligence, engineering, IOT, devops and other edge technologies.”
It should be noted that Pop!_OS track Ubuntu releases. And considering Ubuntu 17.10 release schedule, their first stable releases on October 19, 2017.
System76 will also ship their distro by default on both their laptops and desktops on October 19th. Meanwhile, Ubuntu LTS will still be available as an option for those who want it.
You can download Pop!_OS Alpha right now while waiting for for the stable release in October. Don’t hesitate to share your experience if you have tried it in the comment section.