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How to Find Out My Linux Distribution Name and Version

Reading time: 2 min
Hostman Team
Technical writer

Understanding and identifying your Linux distribution name and version is fundamental for several reasons in the realm of system administration. Firstly, it provides crucial information about the underlying operating system, which is essential for troubleshooting and applying the correct configurations. Different Linux distributions may have variations in package management systems, directory structures, and default configurations, and knowing the specifics ensures accurate and effective system management.

Hostman Tip

If you are using Hostman, you can access this information conveniently through the platform's dashboard. In your control panel, click on your server, navigate to the Plan tab, and you'll find the distribution name and version listed.

Using the lsb_release сommand

  1. Open your terminal.

  2. Type the following command and press Enter:

lsb_release -a
  1. The output will display information about your Linux distribution, including the name and version.

Example Output:

Distributor ID: Ubuntu
Description:    Ubuntu 20.04.3 LTS
Release:        20.04
Codename:   focal

Checking the /etc/os-release file

  1. Open your terminal.

  2. Type the following command and press Enter:

cat /etc/os-release
  1. Look for the PRETTY_NAME and VERSION_ID fields to find your distribution name and version.

PRETTY_NAME="Ubuntu 20.04.3 LTS"


That's it! You've successfully found out your Linux distribution name and version. Whether you're using the terminal or your Hostman panel, knowing your system details is crucial for effective system administration.

Knowledge of the distribution and version is vital when installing software or packages. Many applications are distributed with specific installation instructions tailored to different Linux distributions. By knowing your distribution, you can follow the appropriate guidelines, ensuring compatibility and seamless integration with your system. Additionally, when seeking support from the Linux community or forums, specifying your distribution and version helps others provide more accurate and targeted assistance, enhancing the overall efficiency of issue resolution. In essence, finding out your Linux distribution name and version is a foundational step that empowers users to navigate, configure, and troubleshoot their systems effectively.