An appreciation note

Today I tried installing Arch in a virtual machine, just out of curiosity. I always ended up with problems that I couldn't figure out how to solve other times that I tried and never reached the xorg session, so this time I went with the archinstall command to have it as easy as possible. The installation was succesful in the second attempt and, after a reboot, I had a functional arch vm with the cinnamon desktop.

However, even if I expected the install to be very minimal, it was way more than I expected: no wallpaper, weird fonts in some places (mostly in the title of the apps' windows), no ability to unzip nor see the contents of compressed files, no text editor (not even a terminal one like nano), and the configuration file that makes ethernet work was completely missing by design and you needed to follow a section of the arch wiki to create it (which expects you to have a text editor, causing the need to reinstall if you didn't install nano nor add that configuration file during the installation...)

In other words, there's so much that we take for granted when we have only used distros like debian, ubuntu, zorin or similar, and I just wanted to take a moment to appreciate all the effort being put by developers (from small groups like the ZorinGroup to companies like Canonical) for trying their best to make linux feel welcoming and usable to everyone, no matter how much knowledge you have about computers nor about linux itself. Thank you for making everyone be able to consider GNU Linux as another operating system more that they can choose from and (in most cases) have a better experience than what windows, macOS and chromeOS provide.

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This has kind of been my issue with extreme lightweight distributions for a long time (in terms of actually creating a desktop environment for everything you need to do).
While yes, some distros go to far with configurations and create a bloated system, if you try the other end, in order to get a usable system for a lot of various things, that "lightweight" nature of them isn't that much better. Now, for a small device (like an rpi or older computers) that NEED to save as much as possible, it makes sense. But i'd much rather have a desktop already mostly setup for me to use, versus setting one up and saving maybe 2-300 mb while actually doing my work.
And I second the thanks for making a desktop that should just be usable from minute 1. It really makes people trying to switch over less apprehensive about it, when they see most things will work right out the box.

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Minimalism tends to be an end, not a means. The strength of Zorin OS is that it is not extreme. If choosing an OS itself was about achieving my ideals, I would not have chosen Zorin OS.

I have been using *nix type systems before Linux existed, since around the age of 12. So I have been through the bare bones, building from scratch, making it "my own" and that was cool and fun. I learned a ton, which helped me in my career and to eventually co-found a business venture. Now, I just want something that is one, powerful enough to do what I want, but two be ready to go and stable. So I always encourage trying all the distros like Arch and learn, as it really does give you an appreciation for what some of these more polished distros like Zorin do.

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Agreed, storage is very cheap these days and having a few extra hundred megabytes worth of utilities is not going to make a real difference for most use cases.

Other distributions have the option to choose what to install when the OS is installed for the first time. I think that would be a nice addition to Zorin OS as well, even if it's only a relatively simple picker. But I don't mean to sound unappreciative :slight_smile: while there's always room for improvement, I can't complain with how things are at the moment.

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You could try it with Manjaro. I've heard it is a bit easier to handle Arch System.

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Manjaro is indeed the quite "easy to use Arch".

It has received its fair share of backlash tho for some of the mistakes that has been carried out on it. So if you (Individual that wants to try Manjaro) will have to be prepared for some negative replies back if you indeed do try Manjaro and ask for help. Not all are happy or even willing to help with it. But there are also a lot whom are willing!

To be on-topic: I too would love to give a big Thank you to the ZorinOS Developers/Maintainers. I remember when i joined ZorinOS back in version 15-16. It wasn't the right OS for me at the time. But it was still a very nice user experience. I said to myself to revisit it at a later time. I've revisited it now in 17 and 17.1 and i think its safe to say that i'm staying here. I'm also VERY excited to seeing what 18 bring and the future improvements of 17.x+

I didn't exactly believe it when people said "if you want something like Windows but in Linux, go ZorinOS"

But i now realize how wrong i was. It is indeed just about the most perfect alternative to Windows for the average user wanting to come over with minimal GUI/UI changes.

Kernel 6.5.0 really and i mean REALLY made ZorinOS shine, and 6.8.0+ will be EVEN better.

The future is bright and exciting! Again, thank you!

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That was my exact experience, and I couldn't be happier that I left as soon as I realized this. Toxic elitism at its finest – the kind of waste that nobody needs. Sadly, it's not the only one.

Meanwhile, the Arch Linux wiki is one of the most comprehensive there is about Linux, and plenty of people using it are actually helpful to those asking for help.
Seriously, it's almost like Manjaro only exists so that lazy, spoiled, wanna-be brats can brag about using Arch without going through the trouble of setting it up themselves.

For a far better Arch based distribution, with a much friendlier community, I recommend EndeavourOS.

No offense intended to you @omghixd, just speaking my mind :smiley:

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To @omghixd and @zenzen:

So, on Manjaro it looks not so good, too ... I don't understand this bad Behavior. But okay.

EndeavourOS is based on Arch? I thought it is based on Fedora, hahaha!

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Yeah, this is that part of the Linux Community as a whole i really dislike. It exists in several areas/platforms and its a really bad first impression for brand new users. Alot of people forget the core reason to why they switched to Linux.

It was new, different and exciting. To many it still is (myself including). To others it might be seen as a chore and lifetask to provide support. And if people reach that state. I highly advice to take a step back and perhaps let other users take their place (if possible of course). Because the last thing we need in this scene is overly strict and unfriendly welcomings.

I as many others want it all to succeed. You aren't a perfect driver when you are learning. That is why its called being a "learner". This goes for everything and will never change. But humanity is amazing at solving challenges, this is just another challenge. And it isn't impossible at all.

In terms of setting up Arch without doing it the old-school way. You can very much do an Archinstall and have a fully functional Arch system in matter of minutes. Manjaro has its pros and cons. But if you just steer clear of their forum community. You'll be fine, i manage the unofficial Manjaro and the unofficial Zorin discord and we provide help in the welcoming way we believe is necessary, well.. we try atleast :slight_smile:

@Ponce-De-Leon Endeavour is also "arch based" indeed. I had a spin at it and.. I'll be honest, not for me. But I've heard a lot of people are very happy with it. Sooo its a good alternative for some, not for everyone. Most of Linux is a trial & error thing. You'll EVENTUALLY find a distro "good enough" for you. It took me 2 years to find something i was very comfertable with.

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Yeah, that's also true and one job that often goes unnoticed by many. I think we have a great community going on here, with ups and downs just like everyone else's.

Re-reading my previous post maybe I was a little too harsh about it – I'll leave it up anywya, if it's all the same to everyone – but the feeling regarding Manjaro is not just mine, I've seen many others complaining about this issue.
Although I still stand my recommendation of using EndeavourOS instead of Manjaro; I've genuinely had a much better experience with this project.

I smiled watching a video on djware's YouTube channel where he looks at what is the best option for migrators from Windows and said that if you used an A.I. search engine it always comes back with "EndeavourOS"! As regards to storage, size of storage isn't the issue, what is the issue is bloatware that comes about either with the system or with certain applications. Storage will not reduce the impact of bloatware that brings operating systems down to a snail's pace. What I find interesting is that PCLinuxOS KDE 24.1 (Plasma 5.27) does not have any element of systemd and at idle is only using 661 Mb of RAM, compared with Q4OS KDE (Plasma 5.27) based on Debian "Bookworm" runs at just over 2 Gb at idle (and of course has systemd gooing up the system). Interestingly PCLinuxOS does not use Discover (KDE's version of Gnome Software), but instead uses Synaptic Package Manager to update the system.

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This is something I have been saying repeatedly lately: user experience is not quantity, it's quality. If the user experience is sacrificed to save storage or RAM, I don't support that.

Do you need a comparison to think something is good? What is essential is invisible to the eye.

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Benchmarks can be useful as a measure of efficiency. Let us not forget that more RAM used equates to more energy being wasted.