This is a frequent question among newbies to the tech industry.
Obviously it is going to depend on what kind of development you are up to. If you are making a Linux application, you’ll need a Linux OS; if you’re making a windows application, you’ll need a windows OS; if you’re making a mac application, you’ll need a mac OS.
But then the question becomes, what is the best OS overall?
I’ll try and compare the different OS’s using a benchmark. Let’s get to it.
In my personal opinion I’d say that that is you are into web developing, probably Windows is the best to go with as you can check on all reasonable common web browsers that you can’t on a Linux, including Mac which is a version of Linux.
For Linux, it’s good to learn the command line interface because it is very powerful without all the GUI. People underestimate the GUI and how it lowers productivity with higher response times. But that is not a good reason to switch to Linux as Windows has a command line too, and an advanced PowerShell which is on par with Bash.
For Mac users it is the best if you are into android development. You can write your code in Objective C which is good for android devices. I recently heard on a presentation that Java is a battery drainer for android applications. Thus people prefer to use Mac.
And even yet, Linux differs from the different distributions there is. For example, Solaris, which is a UNIX, performs very well Java compared to other Linux’s. It’s probably due to the fact that SOLARIS is made by Sun microsystems, but now owned by Oracle.
Diagram taken from: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=intel_atom_os&num=1
But in the real world it all comes down to economics. You can make a lot of money selling software for Windows, and when people give away open source on Linux, there’s hardly any monetary gain in making Linux application. The only time Linux is used in the real world is to as a large server warehouse, where they want to be cheap and avoid paying for licenses.