The Ardour Manual

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Why Write a DAW for Linux?

There are already a number of excellent digital audio workstations. To mention just a few: ProTools, Nuendo, Samplitude, Digital Performer, Logic, Cubase (SX), Sonar, along with several less well known systems such as SADIE, SAWStudio and others. Each of these programs has its strengths and weaknesses, although over the last few years most of them have converged on a very similar set of core features. However, each of them suffers from two problems when seen from the perspective of Ardour's development group:

It is fairly understandable that most existing proprietary DAWs do not run on Linux, given the rather small (but growing) share of the desktop market that Linux has. However, when surveying the landscape of "popular operating systems", we find:

Security matters today, and will matter more in the future as more and more live or semi-live network based collaborations take place.

Let's contrast this with Linux, an operating system which:

More than anything, however, Ardour's primary author uses Linux and wanted a DAW that ran there.

Having written a DAW for Linux, it turned out to be relatively easy to port Ardour to macOS, mostly because of the excellent work done by the JACK development group that ported JACK to macOS.