22 June 2014

In this post I am going to describe why I chose Arch Linux over everything else that I have tried. I have tried Redhat based systems like Centos or Fedora, I didn't like it because of the spread out configuration files and names of daemons(httpd instead of apache). I used Ubuntu for a long time, it had regular updates. Most of Linux applications support Ubuntu, so that you don't have to compile everything. Ubuntu was unstable when it received a version upgrade, so I moved do Debian. Stable version of Debian used old packages, so I couldn't get things to work like Skype, because of the missing dependencies. Wine was also 1.4 in default while 1.7 is out. I have tried other distributions like Mint and some other, didn't find them to improve anything. I had heard about Arch before and tried to install it, but I failed.

The second time when Arch came up again was at work, one of my coworkers uses it. He made some good points why to use it and I decided to try it. He also helped me to install it since it has no gui installation options and hes a bit smarter than me in these things. As usual 3 partitions /home, /var and / (to avoid fragmentation). Since Arch came without desktop environment, I decided to use gnome as I love it the most. I have also tried kde, xfce and unity. I found that kde was too massive, xfce was missing some important software and unity has a pretty unuseful dock, but overall I liked the idea. Gnome 3 has everything that I want in one simple solution. When I press "Windows key", It opens up all the windows, dock and search. If I want chrome then I type "ch" and then "Enter", really simple and fast. Enough about that. What differs the most is that Arch Linux comes with latest software using pacman. While pacman comes with default Arch you probably want to install yaourt. Yaourt enables you to install from user repositories. Which enables you to install basically anything I found even my country (Estonia) specific software from there. It pulls the source and builds it for you. I got all the latest software from repositories. Until now (1 month) I haven't seen Arch to fail me. My nvidia drivers are latest, where Ubuntu had old drivers and other distributions required a manual installation of drivers. Combination of latest nvidia drivers and latest wine, made a windows game "Dungeons & Dragons Neverwinter" crash less than on my girlfriends Windows 7. If are unable to chose a distribution, and are a bit of a power user then I suggest Arch Linux. For regular computer users use I would suggest Ubuntu.