There are many reasons to change operating systems or to stick with the one you have. The way it looks, the way it works, the applications and games it supports, its possibilities to be customised by the user… Or simply because we are familiar with it and we don’t feel like changing our routines.

In fact, many people are reluctant to leave Windows for Linux, despite the fact that Linux is free, has the support of large companies and millions of enthusiastic users, and you can customise it to your liking. And one of the reasons is the way it looks. The solution? Try your luck with Linux distributions that look like Windows on the outside.

Actually, almost all of today’s Linux looks like Windows. Or rather, the Windows, Linux and macOS desktops are virtually identical. But there are Windows-style Linux distributions that stand out for their effort to look as much like Windows as possible. Let’s take a look at several notable examples.

Linux Lite

Its splash page says it all. A free operating system. Linux Lite was created to make the transition from Windows to Linux as smooth as possible. That’s why when you see the Linux Lite desktop you can move comfortably if you come from Windows.

This Windows-style Linux doesn’t stop at the façade. It also offers applications familiar to Windows users such as Skype, Steam, Kodi or Spotify**. This aspect is nowadays very easy to achieve, as the most used apps are cross-platform, such as Google Chrome, LibreOffice or VLC Media Player.

Linux Lite is a generic Linux distribution that is updated on a regular basis. It is based on Ubuntu and uses the XFCE desktop, so it performs very well on new and not so new computers. It only requires a 1.5 GHz processor, 1 GB of RAM and 20 GB of disk space. If you have any questions, you can answer them in its official manual.


You’ll find it hard to tell WindowsFX from the Windows 10 desktop. This Windows-style Linux is one of the most recent projects of its kind and delivers what it promises. What’s more, it allows you to run Windows programs via Wine if you can’t find a free alternative.
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In this Linux everything is designed so that you don’t notice the change from Windows to Linux. They’ve even incorporated a virtual assistant. Instead of Cortana, you’ll find the Helloa assistant, available in Brazilian and English and based on Google technology.

WindowsFX is based on Ubuntu and incorporates a multitude of changes and improvements. In addition to supporting Microsoft applications, you will be able to run games and also VDI virtual desktops (VMware Horizon, Citrix Receiver, Remote Desktop…).

Zorin OS

As its creators say, Zorin OS is an alternative to Windows and macOS designed to make your computer faster, more powerful, more secure and respect your privacy. In other words, all the advantages of Linux with the look and feel of Windows.
Another of its peculiarities is that it offers a Lite version for older or modest computers. Its requirements are 700 MHz processor, 512 MB of RAM and 8 GB of disk space. And for new computers, you can use the Ultimate, Core or Education versions.

With Zorin OS you will be able to give free rein to your needs, run it on all kinds of devices, including touch screens, install all kinds of Linux applications and enjoy its 20 pre-installed games.


Based on Debian Linux, Q4OS is another one of those Windows-like Linux distributions. This time, it looks just as much like Windows 7 or Windows 8 as Windows 10. It also has another theme that imitates Windows XP, for the more nostalgic. The choice is yours.

This Windows-style Linux has the advantages of Debian: easy to install, automatic updates, application installer, a good catalogue of apps, and so on. And as usual, you can install it or run it from CD or USB.


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