When comparing Solus vs FreeDOS, the Slant community recommends Solus for most people. In the question“What is the best desktop OS?” Solus is ranked 14th while FreeDOS is ranked 21st.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Rolling release
Pro Modern desktop environment
The default desktop environment used by Solus is called Budgie and is quite nice and minimalistic.
Pro Easy installation
The installation procedure for this distribution is quite simple. It's GUI based and all you have to do is to follow the instructions given by the installation window itself.
Pro Exclusively for desktop systems
Pro Great package management
The software center makes it really easy to install the latest software through Snappy and Flatpak. Including third party software.
System boots quickly and stays responsive. Does what operating system should do, and does it really well.
The system itself is very stable. All packages in the repository seem to be carefully picked, well prepared and run stable.
Pro Seamless Packages
It may not have the most obscure packages, but the packages it does have is a good number of everything a Linux user needs. Gamers, developers, desktop users, etc. all have the necessary packages and then some. The packages themselves are integrated perfectly and are very well updated.
Pro Built from scratch
Pro Open Source
Pro Large and friendly community
You won't be let alone, any question submitted on FreeDOS forums will be detailedly answered in a few hours time.
Pro Compatible with MS-DOS apps
Pro Supports FAT32 partition
As opposite to every MS-DOS version equal or older than 6.22, or any DR-DOS version, you won't be restricted by a 2 Gb large FAT16 partition.
Pro Highly portable OS
It takes ten minutes to make a portable, USB FreeDOS drive, All you need is a USB device FAT or FAT32 formatted (128 Mb should be enough, but a 2 GB device would be better). First make a FreeDOS bootable USB drive with a program like Rufus (on Windows) or UnetBootin (on linux or Mac). Select it at boot and run fdisk to make a Primary DOS partition and install FreeDOS on it. Final step: reboot and run fdisk again to make the new partition active (optional: delete the installer partition). After that, the system is ready to boot with any computer.
Pro Extremely lightweight
Takes less than 10 seconds to boot.
Pro Easy to dual-boot, either with any Linux distro or Windows
If you install a Linux distro after Freedos, GRUB2 will automatically detect it. As for Windows, newer EasyBCD releases implemented FreeDOS and automatically recognize it.
Con Slow development
Con Software a bit slower to launch than for other distributions
Con Forums are not very friendly
Con There is often a black screen after update
Con An upgrade breaks the system quite often
Con No USB Image writer
Con The default desktop environment is not very customizable
Maybe because it's a relatively new project still in its infancy and this may be fixed in the future, but Budgie is not very customizable. You can only change the theme and wallpaper.
Con Unlikely going to be your PC main OS
If looking for a lightweight OS, and thinking of FreeDOS as a possible option, consider that it will only useful when having to deal with legacy software, or other dos-based programs still commonly used at workplaces. Nonetheless it's a fantastic solution for Retro-Gamers who still own a a supported sound card. However the lack of modern software makes it hard to accomplish common everyday tasks, such us opening a document written in UTF-8, not mentioning, obviously docx and pdf files. The best choice is to install it on a USB drive, in order to have a portable OS, with basic hardware and all your files (and if you want games) ready to be launched with every machine. Useful to edit partitions, as well as restore MBR, check errors, install a light bootmanager on any kind of FAT partiton of every IDE-mode compatible hard-disk.
Con Obvious lack of sound card drivers
If you own a sound card produced after than 2000, you won't find a driver to make it work.