Which of these Ubuntu-based distros is the best?

When you think of Linux, Ubuntu is the first thing that comes to mind. While Ubuntu on its own is as great as it gets, it continues to host other distributions, each vying for the top spot. Feren and Zorin OS are variants of Linux, each drawing power from the ever-famous Ubuntu.

Both Linux distributions are the best in their respective fields and promise to meet the requirements and expectations of the end users. If you’re having a hard time deciding between Feren and Zorin OS, read on for more details on the two distros.

System Requirements for Feren and Zorin

Feren and Zorin OS are both Ubuntu-powered Linux distros, so you can expect the best of both. In short, Zorin and Feren are among the most beautiful Linux distributions. What sets them apart is their features, but under the hood, they work with Ubuntu as a base.


Like any Linux distribution, the ISO images are easy to download from their respective websites. However, before downloading the images, you need to make sure that your system meets the following criteria:

Feren OS System Requirements

This is what you need to run Feren OS

  • Screen resolution: 1024 × 768 or higher resolution
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 50GB
  • CPU: 64-bit architecture

Discharge: Feren ISO operating system (free)

Zorin OS System Requirements

The minimum hardware requirements for Zorin OS are:

  • Screen resolution: 1024 × 768 or higher resolution
  • RAM: 1GB -2GB (depending on the edition you are downloading)
  • Storage: 10 GB-40 GB of disk space (depending on the edition you are downloading)
  • CPU: 64-bit architecture

Discharge: Zorin OS ISO (Free)

First look at Feren and Zorin

On Feren OS, some icons are available in the default layout, distributed along the taskbar of the screen. You can start Vivaldi, Files and Store from the menu bar. On the right hand side, you will see some basic icons that show system usage, battery, and other relevant system icons. The entire layout is simple, allowing you to easily navigate the desktop.

Feren OS desktop screen showing icons and wallpapers

Zorin OS has a minimalist look; this is just one of the many reasons to give the operating system a try. You won’t find many icons on the home screen in the default layout. In addition to the menu icon, it has icons for the Firefox browser, files, and software. On the right side you have the basic drum and sound icons.

Applications on the Zorin desktop screen

Feren vs Zorin: What desktop version do you use?

Feren OS ranks high in customizations as it ships with the KDE Plasma desktop. KDE Connect remains one of the more customizable options available on this desktop. You can easily connect your phone to your system to receive notifications, reply to messages, and more.

If you want to know your system in detail, you can always open the Tour Guide from the settings menu and try it whenever it suits you. You’ll feel right at home with Feren OS if you’re transitioning from Windows. After all, Feren is one of the best Linux distributions for Windows users.

KDE Tour interface on Feren OS

Zorin OS is available with the GNOME desktop; It is one of the most widely used desktop environments within the Linux ecosystem. Since Zorin is available in several editions, you can download GNOME with the Pro and Core versions. Alternatively, Zorin Lite is available with XFCE, which adds to the lightweight nature of the desktop.

Zorin desktop boot walkthrough screen

Feren and Zorin Default Applications

Feren OS comes with its default native apps, which are meant to give users a basic skeleton to work with. Also, you can install apps on your system from the Flatpak package manager, to customize them according to your requirements.

To get you started, here’s what you can expect with the basic installation:

  • Web navigator: vivaldi
  • Office room: LibreOffice
  • Image editor: Krita
  • Email client: Geary
  • Pictures viewer: koko

List of default applications on the Feren OS desktop

From an installation perspective, you can access four main software hubs on Zorin: Flathub, the Snap Store, and the native Ubuntu/Zorin APT hubs. You can also install the AppImage and DEB packages on your Zorin system.

  • Web navigator: Firefox
  • Office room: LibreOffice/OnlyOffice
  • Image editor: GNU Image Manipulation Program
  • Email client: Evolution
  • Pictures viewer: Pictures viewer

List of default applications in Zorin OS

Screen designs in Feren and Zorin

Feren’s desktop layouts are slightly different than Zorin’s, but it gives users plenty of options to work with. You can choose from Default mode, Tablet mode, and other desktop layout options.

Settings page showing various desktop layouts on Feren OS

Each layout has its own set of customizations, which makes them different. However, despite the differences, each view offers a beautiful collection of customizations that will appeal to end users.

On the other hand, Zorin OS offers three editions: Pro, Core, and Lite. Since Pro is a paid edition, you can expect eight desktop layouts and a few additional premium layouts. You can use Zorin’s Appearance tool to toggle between different views.

Zorin Appearance Tool Dialog on Zorin Desktop Screen

Enjoy multiple views from a native macOS view, or revive your experiences with Windows 11 view. You can choose other layouts, including:

  • windows classic
  • ubuntu
  • windows
  • window list
  • Play
  • gnome shell

The last four layouts are available as standard desktop layout views.

Ferin vs. Zorin: Performance

Feren OS ranks well in performance, especially since it’s a perfect combination of Ubuntu and KDE Plasma. It uses about 1.8 GB of memory in idle state, while the CPU usage is between 5 and 8%. The latte dock continues to use the most resources, while the macOS theme consumes a lot of battery.

System monitor showing computer statistics on Feren OS

You can expect Feren to consume around 2.1 GB of memory and 8-10% CPU usage when running heavy applications.

Although Zorin is based on Ubuntu, its configurations are not the same as the base system. If you’re powering up old computers, you’ll find Zorin a perfect fit. Performance is stable and it works great with virtual machines, especially when you have limited resources.

Zorin OS performance graphs showing system usage

When you start working with Zorin, you’ll find that the desktop is quite responsive when handling animations, switching between windows and tabs, opening and closing applications, and installing updates.

In an idle state, the operating system uses about 2-3% of the CPU with a RAM usage of 1.1 GB. Some native apps consume a lot of memory, which increases the overall load on the system.

If you are working with heavy applications, Zorin uses 2 GB of memory and 30-35% CPU.

Choosing between Feren and Zorin

Linux distros are a godsend for end users and there is no clear winner between Feren and Zorin. Both distributions are based on Ubuntu, and there is no doubt that each is the best on its own.

Keep a few main factors in mind to ensure you download a suitable Linux distribution. This way, you can never go wrong with your Linux distribution selection.

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