How Linux Can Be a Designer’s Best Friend

Today we are used to the fact that a designer is a creative person; he goes to bed late at night and, of course, works on a Mac. Perhaps, sometimes, on Windows. But most designers strongly associate themselves with a slim, beautiful MacBook. Many people choose it as a tribute to their profession because the iOs is convenient and practical.

The second camp of designers who deny the convenience of MacBooks is choosing Windows. By tradition or because it is supported by most major hardware manufacturers and has much software available. For them, this is not so much love as practical considerations.

Statista data confirms this choice: the graphic shows that most IT people worldwide report using Windows operating system as their preferred development environment as of 2021. Apple’s macOS comes in third with 44 percent, behind the 47 percent of developers picking Linux.

Stop. Linux? Io-Axis designers and Windows hobbyists overlook the benefits that Linux can provide.

This article will look at why a software development company can set up work on Linux for their designers and what benefits it will give everyone.

Linux Benefits for Designers

Surprisingly, not only can Linux do almost everything that other operating systems can do, it can do those things better and easier. And that’s why:

1. Free access

iOS and Windows have paid structures, which means if you have a limited budget, it will be more difficult for you to reach your goal – to make a quick profit. At the same time, Linkus has a significant advantage over Windows and iOs – Linux won’t cost you a dime. And when you have it, it is yours for life. You do not need to buy or wait for an expensive system update; you do not need to update the exact machine you are working on to stay in the trend of our time. Almost all Linux software is free. You can run nearly all Windows applications and some Mac applications on a Linux computer.

2. Open source

Both Windows and OS X contain a vast amount of code that no one other than Microsoft or Apple can know. And if you work on these platforms, you agree with this state of affairs and trust the companies.

Linux is entirely open-source. It means you don’t have to get an unpleasant surprise. If someone hid any malicious code inside Linux, it would be almost instantly detected and removed by any of the thousands of volunteers working to ensure that Linux remains the safest free operating system.

3. System security

Linux was initially designed as a secure operating system, and it is. It does not mean that you never need to worry about security, but it does mean that you do not waste time downloading antivirus database files every day. Moreover, Forbes wrote that Microsoft itself is seeking security advice from the most unexpected source: the Linux developer community.

4. Best efficiency

When you work with Windows, you have to do defragmentation to avoid wasting space on your computer. Linux store files differently, so you don’t waste space. Another way to make Linux more efficient is that it doesn’t need to produce the memory-consuming computing resources required by Windows 10 or OS X.

5. Animation tools

Synfig Studio is a Flash replacement and what Linux can do

for designers. The main thing you can do with this tool is to create cartoons. Synfig Studio doesn’t duplicate everything Flash can do, but the animation quality is superior in some respects.

On top of that, Synfig Studio has an extensive online video training program with correct closed captioning, which you don’t often find in commercial software, and is here for free to use.

Why else is Linux appealing to designers?

1. High availability ensures high performance

The software contains bugs and updates to fix bugs and new bugs resulting from these updates.

Open source creative apps do not have mandatory subscription fees or licensing requirements. They are available when needed and are available on almost any platform. It means that when you sit down at your work computer, you know you have access to the software you need.

It can be challenging to find a computer on which, for example, Inkscape does not work than to find a computer on which such a proprietary application is running. We call it high availability, and it is very beneficial to users.

2. Оpen access is better for a variety

It is a different kind of high availability but essential for designers. We could say that many designers would not be in the creative industry if they did not work with open source. Even open-source projects that offer a paid subscription, such as Ardor, ensure that users access the software regardless of their ability to pay.

Linux attracts because it does not limit the circle of persons who can use your software. It attracts even more users to your product. And when you do that, you are engaging a greater variety of creative voices. Art loves influence, and the more experience and ideas you have, the better. It is possible with innovative open-source software.

3. Resolute format support is more inclusive

Inclusion benefits – the more people can use the system, the more help both the system itself and its users.

Proprietary software has access to open file formats since they contain open source and can be integrated into any application. Surprisingly, creative open-source applications nonetheless include support for as many proprietary formats as possible.

It is possible to support a large number of open file formats.

4. Limitless ideas

The open-source code that Linux gives is the ability to interpret tasks in a variety of ways.

When you work with proprietary software, you start seeing the world based on what is available.

Typically, you have a few must-have open source “obvious” solutions, but you also get an additional dozen applicants on edge. These options are sometimes only half done, or they are too focused on a specific task or challenging to master, but most importantly, they are unique and innovative.

Some helpful design tools that work on Linux

With the right set of tools, you can work more efficiently here.

Proprietary software is usually associated with sensible work habits, and rarely can you directly benefit from focusing on making it easier for users to automate tasks. Linux, with its open-source, is mainly built for automation and not just for servers.


Figma is fast becoming one of the best and most popular UI / UX design tools out there. It has a generous free tier that will be more than enough for most people. However, at the time of writing, Figma only provides official desktop clients for Windows and macOS.

Figma-Linux is Figma’s unofficial full-featured desktop client for Linux.


Inkscape is a powerful tool that lets you do almost everything its paid counterparts do, but it’s free and open source. Its highly anticipated 1.0 version is currently in beta testing and has many performances, functionality, and interface improvements.


GIMP is a powerful piece of software. If you’re a seasoned Photoshop user, it can take a while to adjust to the GIMP workflow. But when you do, you can do almost anything you can do in Photoshop (but for free). It can even open .psd files + it’s open source.


Photopea is a full-featured alternative to Photoshop on the web. It can open files from most other applications and has a robust set of tools for all your photo editing needs. Its interface is noticeably more modern and designed to be familiar to Photoshop users. Its free tier has the same features as its low-cost premium subscription, which will disable ads on the site and give you double the story steps.


Krita is a free, fully functional, open-source art studio. It allows you to create paintings, sketches, comics, textures, and more.

Summing up

Perhaps for many of you – if you work in design – it will discover that Linux can cover most of your work and creative needs. If you’ve tried Linux before but gave up, this is an excellent reason to try again. After all, Linux has been improving and becoming more convenient and exciting lately.

Linux used to have a reputation for being difficult to use and unsuitable for the desktop, but now that has changed. Many things are easier to do on Linux than on OS X or Windows because there is less hidden code behind you.

Best of all, even if not all hardware is supported, at least you will know immediately on Linux. These massive delays are infuriating every time you plug something new into Windows. In Linux, everything either works, or it doesn’t, and there is a way to make that work or not.

Finally, you can run both Windows and OS X inside Linux, and you can run Linux inside either of the other two, and there are Linux distributions explicitly made to run on Mac hardware. So if you want, you can take advantage of the best features of all these operating systems.

Author’s bio: Anastasiia Lastovetska is a technology writer at MLSDev, a software development company that builds web & mobile app solutions from scratch. She researches the area of technology to create great content about app development, UX/UI design, tech & business consulting.


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