Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Some thoughts Manjaro compared to Archbang


I'm quite fed up with distrohopping.
As I find AB good enough as an easy Arch install medium I didn't feel the urge to try Manjaro till now. But I will do it now for this post.
But first  I want to make clear, that there are some things I really like about the Manjaro project.
The central aspect is that I have thought many a times, that Arch in a way is really easy;
with some extra instruction it could be made useful for a much larger user group.
Of course you are thinking about some friends etc. that I wouldn't suggest AB because of its difficulty.
But after the very bumpy change to systemd and bin to usr  bin and  some other update calamities I gave up on the whole idea. Arch devs seem(ed?) to have lost control.
And I wouldn't like to expose friends to the general hostility towards noobs in the Arch community too.
Still I find it a really generous attempt of the people over at Manjaro to take on this task of making Arch more accessible and am impressed with what they have accomplished so far.
On the Archbang forums we had some discussion if it would be a good idea to open Arch more and I remember that ArchVortex really was against the idea.
I don't have a fixed opinion about it, I want to explore this more.
My own feelings are mixed especially about providing a gui for pacman as default, pamac.
I find the feedback given by pacman really one of the most essential benefits from Arch and here on the forums I always discourage people to use a gui for pacman.
Of course, everybody can use pacman in Manjaro, but the educational choice has been made to learn the default user to manage package management with pamac (http://wiki.manjaro.org/index.php/Using … _Beginners). This is on first sight the greatest problem I have with Manjaro.
For the rest I do find gui's useful in a lot of cases; I hardly do any file management from the terminal for instance, probably also because I'm lousy typist. Just to make clear I'm not the regular terminal geek.
Choice for stability
Holding packages for some time (a month) to lessen update problems and increase stability is also an important aspect of Manjaro.
I'm curious about the experiences with that and especially if it doesn't give problems when installing from AUR. PKGBUILD are often very soon updated after a change in package naming/update; dependency handling in the PKGBUILD can get impossible for a certain period of time; in recent example it the change to naming some dependencies qt4 in stead of qt after the release of qt5 in the Arch repos om March the 3 .
I don't worry so much about the security aspect of it. I trust that really essential updates like that for web browsers or flash will be used as soon as possible.
My own experience that with using the stable repos from Arch and a quiet update scheme you can avoid a lot of problems. I think to have as few update problems as possible a weekly update is wise in AB. People with a lot of update problems tend to update once or twice a day.
Another feature are the multiple kernels. Having installed kernel-lts has proven for me to have some great benefits. I'm amazed Manjaro isn't using the linux-lts  kernel as default.
to be continued
p.s I saw that today the qt5 update had already been passed to manjaro repo's.

1 comment:

acuviticus said...

Agree with you that Linux forums can be very hostile to newbies. Even if some forums start out friendly they seem then to morph into an "inner-fellowship" of geekiness - a social meeting area that although not totally private does not encourage newcomers. Shame, as some distro have great promise.

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