You are not logged in.

#1 2011-03-30 04:29:11

imnotfred
Member
Registered: 2011-03-30
Posts: 13

Is Arch Linux right for me?

Arch seems like a pretty awesome distro, and I think I would like it a lot. But is it right for me?

I was first introduced to Linux and Unix-based systems last summer when I took a course at my local community college. Since then, I have installed Ubuntu on my HP laptop. In the past months, I have learned and taught myself a lot about the way linux works: downloading and installing software, Unix command line prompt, etc.

Ubuntu is a fantastic distro for linux beginners, but I feel like I'm ready to take the next step and I'm always itching to see a little more of what goes on behind the scenes. I read a guide on Arch over at LifeHacker and skimmed the "Getting Started" guide on Arch Wiki and I generally understood everything that was going on; nothing seemed way over my head. So I think I could handle Arch. What do you guys think?

If you think I should take Arch for a spin, is it practical to install it as my main OS on my main machine? Should I dual-boot it next to Ubuntu or similar? I am planning on building a PC this summer and am currently debating over which OS to use; Arch is a main candidate. My main uses for this computer will be surfing the net, listening to music (integration with my iPod would be great), a little video editing, some casual gaming, and general programming/tinkering with my computer.

I know y'all probably get a lot of these but I appreciate your feedback.

Offline

#2 2011-03-30 04:39:57

ewaller
Administrator
From: Pasadena, CA
Registered: 2009-07-13
Posts: 18,404

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Try it.  If you are not sure, try it inside a virtual machine


Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of nature -- Michael Faraday
Sometimes it is the people no one can imagine anything of who do the things no one can imagine. -- Alan Turing
---
How to Ask Questions the Smart Way

Online

#3 2011-03-30 05:03:26

sironitomas
Member
From: Cordoba, Argentina
Registered: 2009-11-28
Posts: 174
Website

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

I went trough the same debate a few years ago. After trying Arch, I inmediatly dumped out Ubuntu.

Believe me, Arch worth a try at least!

Offline

#4 2011-03-30 05:27:54

stryder
Member
Registered: 2009-02-28
Posts: 500

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Arch is good for those who like to customise everything. It provides you with a basic system (without X), and you just build from there. That way you learn and there's plenty of documentation to guide you along. Maintaining arch is quite simple unless there is a major problem which from your needs seems pretty unlikely. I'd keep the ubuntu until arch is done to your satisfaction. Then you can decide which will be your main system.

Offline

#5 2011-03-30 05:42:11

lives2evil
Member
From: GMT+7
Registered: 2010-03-21
Posts: 244

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

All this asking and talking and asking... Just cross your fingers and get it done.
I'm sure you won't get anything by asking such question. 99% people will advise you to try (since you said you understood everything and all) and that's that.
I in other hand usually advise people against using Archlinux whenever they ask such question. However I think you should try.
PS: I tried not to reply but this is my limit. big_smile

Last edited by lives2evil (2011-03-30 05:43:05)


tsujeruplive, tnarongisi... ... ... ... ɥsılƃuǝ sı sıɥʇ

Offline

#6 2011-03-30 07:29:46

cesura
Trusted User (TU)
From: Tallinn, Estonia
Registered: 2010-01-23
Posts: 1,867

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Yes, I agree with lives2evil. Usually, whenever someone has to ask if they are ready for Arch, I tell them no. However, in your case, I think that you'll do just fine. smile

Offline

#7 2011-03-30 07:47:08

eDio
Member
From: Ukraine, Kyiv
Registered: 2008-12-02
Posts: 422

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Arch needs much more effort on start, and once set up and tuned for your needs, it'll just work well (Almost 2 years of ArchLinux, about 6 months as the only OS - no major problems here).
But if Ubuntu works well for you, I don't see why should you change it to anything else.

I tried to use Ubuntu too, but some problem always appeared (in the first month of use), that I was not able to solve.

Offline

#8 2011-03-30 08:08:15

cyrus
Member
From: Auckland
Registered: 2011-02-14
Posts: 26
Website

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

To satisfy yourself and determine whether it is right for you, I'd suggest you install Arch on a USB and boot from there. Try it out a few days and take your decision.

That's what I did and decided to eventually overwrite my Fedora installation.

Offline

#9 2011-03-30 12:40:33

stqn
Member
Registered: 2010-03-19
Posts: 1,191
Website

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Be prepared for a few months of intensive research in order to make things work as you want them. Other than that... you can always install alongside Ubuntu and delete Ubuntu later.

Offline

#10 2011-03-30 12:55:42

redden0t8
Member
Registered: 2011-01-27
Posts: 42

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

I was in a very similar situation to you, and ended up going with Arch.  I'm quite happy now smile  My reasoning:

  1. It has an amazing combination of up-to-date-ness and stability due to the rolling release model.  I almost never find myself waiting for a package upgrade to make it to Arch.  Yet at the same time, I find things rarely break, and when they do the community is right there to help.

  2. It's very transparent in how everything is set up.  Distros like Ubuntu are supposed "just work", but when they don't, it's a pain to figure out what's going on under the hood.  Arch, on the other hand, takes a little more effort to set up at first, but if you have any issues it's easy to figure out what's going on and try and fix it.

  3. The support and community is amazing.  Between the wiki and the forums, odds are good you'll find the help you need

  4. The AUR (Arch User Repository) provides a simple way to compile anything missing from the repositories from source.

If you decide to go with Arch, you will have a bit of learning to do, but if I'm reading you right you'll have no problem handling it and will probably even enjoy it.

I would install Arch as a dual-boot on your current computer, that way you can continue using Ubuntu until you get Arch running the way you like it (or heaven forbid, decide Arch isn't for you tongue ).  By the time summer rolls around, you'll be comfortable enough to get it going from the start on your new computer.

Offline

#11 2011-03-30 21:07:22

dannyg123
Member
Registered: 2010-12-19
Posts: 11

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

If you feel confident with it then I say go for Arch. I use my ipod no problem with banshee and as for games and video editing there is no shortage of programs in the AUR. Also it's way easier than you might think to keep it up and running after you get it set up the way you like (way easier than ubuntu) and Arch can do anything Ubuntu can so I see no reason not to use it as your default OS.


Only on Tuesday.

Offline

#12 2011-03-30 21:12:50

graysky
Wiki Maintainer
From: :wq
Registered: 2008-12-01
Posts: 10,387
Website

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

sironitomas wrote:

I went trough the same debate a few years ago. After trying Arch, I inmediatly dumped out Ubuntu.

Believe me, Arch worth a try at least!

+1. 

1) The Arch Way really speaks to me.
2) Packages in the Arch repos are very up-to-date.
3) Pacman and the AUR
4) Pacman

Yeah, pacman is in there twice because it rocks.

Last edited by graysky (2011-03-30 21:14:15)


CPU-optimized Linux-ck packages @ Repo-ck  • AUR packagesZsh and other configs

Offline

#13 2011-03-30 23:13:49

dodo3773
Member
Registered: 2011-03-17
Posts: 801

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

I just came to Arch from Ubuntu about a week ago. It took me until today to get my system configured the way I wanted. I have never been happier with an OS in my life. If you know how to do the install (took me 2 tries because of user error) then go for it. There is a book called the "arch linux handbook 2.0" which I bought off of amazon which made it a whole lot easier for me. If you are thinking about it then you are probably ready. Back up your files and install. If you decide to go back to Ubuntu then you already know how. What have you got to lose?

Offline

#14 2011-03-31 05:41:54

Tycon712
Member
From: North Carolina
Registered: 2010-07-13
Posts: 34
Website

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

In addition to the more than helpful details described above, just go for it.
I hadn't even had much experience (compared to most arch users) with linux before I switched to Arch. I just dove in head first and its been an awesome experience.

Don't think twice. If you can't tell already, these guys on the arch forums are like your personal live support team. If you have any problems switchin over to arch, you can rest assured that they'll be here waiting to help if you post a question.


"If you would be a real seeker after truth, it is necessary that at least once in your life you doubt, as far as possible, all things."
-René Descartes

Offline

#15 2011-03-31 06:01:50

ksira
Member
Registered: 2009-10-27
Posts: 31

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Well you a say a few things that make me agree with the others that you should just try it.

imnotfred wrote:

I was first introduced to Linux and Unix-based systems last summer when I took a course at my local community college. Since then, I have installed Ubuntu on my HP laptop. In the past months, I have learned and taught myself a lot about the way linux works: downloading and installing software, Unix command line prompt, etc.
.

Having some formal training on the command prompt is a pretty good thing when it comes to Arch. First of all, to install it you need to use the command line, and many Arch users just prefer the CLI to the GUI. Also, because you took the class you are showing great interest learning more about Linux. Arch will probably be very fun for you compared to Ubuntu, and it will be a great learning experience.

imnotfred wrote:

Ubuntu is a fantastic distro for linux beginners, but I feel like I'm ready to take the next step and I'm always itching to see a little more of what goes on behind the scenes. I read a guide on Arch over at LifeHacker and skimmed the "Getting Started" guide on Arch Wiki and I generally understood everything that was going on; nothing seemed way over my head. So I think I could handle Arch. What do you guys think?


I used Ubuntu and switched to Arch after a year or so, taking a quick a quick detour with Debian. Honestly I wish I went straight to Arch. Arch is much easier to understand and maintain than Debian, and you will just have to unlearn some things. With Arch, I feel like I am getting a much more vanilla Linux experience than Debian.


imnotfred wrote:

If you think I should take Arch for a spin, is it practical to install it as my main OS on my main machine? Should I dual-boot it next to Ubuntu or similar? I am planning on building a PC this summer and am currently debating over which OS to use; Arch is a main candidate. My main uses for this computer will be surfing the net, listening to music (integration with my iPod would be great), a little video editing, some casual gaming, and general programming/tinkering with my computer.

I agree with dual-booting it next to Ubuntu. You can always get rid of Ubuntu later, and you may need a fallback if you get stuck. Arch is very full featured, and would suit your needs. Because you sound like the type of person who likes to program/hack go for it, just install it, get in trouble, look at the wiki, and I hope you enjoy this awesome distro.

Offline

#16 2011-03-31 06:06:51

Hyugga
Member
From: Santiago, Chile
Registered: 2010-03-26
Posts: 335

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

ArchLinux and Ubuntu are awesome in their own way. I was an Ubuntu user too, but some day i installed Arch on my laptop and i never came back to Ubuntu.
if you want to know everything that's happening in your system,  ArchLinux is for you.
Almost forgot! Arch community is the best!
Good luck.

Last edited by Hyugga (2011-03-31 06:07:30)

Offline

#17 2011-03-31 07:23:53

orpheus
Member
Registered: 2011-03-31
Posts: 6

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

guy!!!! a olny a kernel i very right for you ,try it!

Offline

#18 2011-03-31 07:32:10

Awebb
Member
Registered: 2010-05-06
Posts: 5,959

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

graysky wrote:

1) The Arch Way really speaks to me.

orpheus wrote:

guy!!!! a olny a kernel i very right for you ,try it!

Speaking to abstract ideas isn't normal. On Arch it is.

Arch. Not even once.

Last edited by Awebb (2011-03-31 07:32:37)

Offline

#19 2011-03-31 18:29:45

ANOKNUSA
Member
Registered: 2010-10-22
Posts: 2,141

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

Check out the Beginner's Guide and The Arch Way in the wiki.  It's important to note that what really distinguishes Arch from most other distros is that it isn't a distro in the most common sense of the term.  Ubuntu, Fedora, SuSE, Sabayon, Mandriva, PCLOS, etc. have graphical installers that pre-configure everything for you;  the choices are made for you, and you'll have to work around anything you don't find to your liking. You can easily add and remove programs, but always limited by what they've provided: packages that are patched in order to work in the way they've deemed appropriate, and an init system that's opaque to users (remember the fuss over certain graphics drivers not rendering Plymouth splashes correctly?  I've never had that issue in Arch).  Arch, on the other hand, is essentially a set of tools--the Arch Installation Framework, a couple init scripts, about six config files (give or take), repos, the ABS tree, the kernel and a package manager--that allow a user to craft their own operating system to their liking.  A couple of the things I just mentioned are even optional as it is; at least three of those config files have never been touched by me, as I don't need them.  Combine this sense of freedom and control with the DIY philosophy (which I find empowering as well, but hell--I enjoy research, learning and problem solving) and the close-knit community, and you've got my favorite distro.  Ultimately, it's the choices of the developers that make a distro what it is; the software--at least in principle--rarely changes.  In the case of Arch, most everything comes straight from upstream, goes in the testing repo briefly, then ends up in the standard repo, only altered if deemed necessary for security or basic functionality.

I left Ubuntu after switching to KDE and finding Kubuntu not to my liking;  I also found that many of the "conveniences" of Ubuntu (and the 9-12 other distros I tried afterward) just got in the way.  For example, why use the Ubuntu USB Startup Disk Creator or Unetbootin when "dd" is faster and easier?  How much frustration could I have avoided installing the Catalyst driver in Ubuntu or SuSE if I'd done so manually (with a number of console commands I can count on one hand) rather than mess around with a GUI, thus knowing exactly what I did wrong?  To me, it just seems better to start with what I absolutely need and build up piecemeal, rather than add a bunch of crap I don't need/want/even know is there in the first place and hide it all behind extra GUI's, then try and pick it apart.  Ultimately, you make Arch what you want it to be.  No one can tell you if it's right for you, or if you should install it (there are rare cases where folks here would flat-out say "No," but yours doesn't seem to be one of 'em tongue).  Check out those wiki articles I mentioned;  if it seems like something that interests you, give it a whirl!

Offline

#20 2011-03-31 22:06:03

phaedrus
Member
From: Wellington, New Zealand
Registered: 2010-06-18
Posts: 20

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

I think it is definitely practical for a main OS for your machine.

Tho, if you want to 'try before you buy' then it could be worth giving ArchBang a go. It's Arch, with the OpenBox window manager and a few other things pre-installed to get you going. It uses the regular Arch repos, so you can get a feel for the Arch Way with a system that pretty much works out of the box... I now run it on a desktop, htpc and two old laptops. EDIT: should mention that ArchBang is a live distro, plus if you have a bunch of RAM spare you can load it all into RAM for speedy and quiet performance.

Basically, to really find out what's going on in the background of Linux I think the important thing to do is not to use Gnome or KDE. I just feel that they are so 'complete' that you don't get to really interact with the system... ArchBang could be a good option to get you up and running with a Desktop, but with minimal junk that you don't need or that is overly configured.

Last edited by phaedrus (2011-04-01 02:41:44)

Offline

#21 2011-04-01 00:52:07

invictus51
Member
From: Alaska
Registered: 2010-10-08
Posts: 25

Re: Is Arch Linux right for me?

I moved to Arch about 6 months ago after using Crunchbang for a while.  I was definitely nervous about it at first, but between the wiki and the forums, it made the installation and configuration of my first Arch laptop pretty straightforward.  I've been extremely happy with Arch ever since I switched, and have learned so much more about GNU/Linux and how my computer operates, it's been an awesome ride so far smile


Samsung Series 3 NP305V5A.  AMD Quad Core A6-3410, 8 Gb Ram, 750GB HD, Radeon 6520G

Don't get in an argument with an idiot, they'll drag you down to their level, and beat you with experience...

Offline

Board footer

Powered by FluxBB