Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

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viking60
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Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 03 Apr 2013, 10:08

Image
Manjaro-xfce-0.8.4

Manjaro is based on Arch and developed in Austria France and Germany. Countries known for Weisswurst Sauerkraut, huge Daivid Hasselhoff CD collections and snails, but also quality and persistence.
So could it be? Can the "complicated" Arch who demands tech minded and experienced people (everybody saying something else; are not using it or Lying +1) be made easily accesible to the common user?
Simply install and go and start enjoying the very latest of software always without having the hassle of installing every six months? With graphical package managers automated install with automatic detection of hardware and dto automatic install of drivers?

This almost sounds to good to be true so I was ready to write it off when I discovered that they also maintain their own repos. Then it could work - In Arch some dev is in the mood to implement systemd this week so you better be able to refurnish your system bigtime. If you miss that week and go for an upgrade one month later you are in serious trouble and in for a lot of work.
Arch is not for those who update once in a while it is more for everyday users with experience. And Arch is very honest about that - I even get the feeling that they do not want the newbies over there.
If you are to lazy to do your own research you will probably be told off in their forums. And that is pretty fair too: Why should someone else work their but off if you yourself are not doing the same?

So after having scared all the newbies away from Arch is Manjaro an option for them?

I know the GUI package manager pacmanxg; it is only depending on X and makes install and maintenance pretty easy. It removes orphans and syncs repos and even finds the three fastest repos for you - if you so desire.
It also gives you access to AUR so there is virtually no limit to what you can install. and it will always be the latest.

To good to be true? Sit tight - yours truly is going to find out.....
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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viking60
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Re: Manjaro an easy Arch for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 03 Apr 2013, 17:52

I downloaded the latest stable xfce version (you can install KDE or whatever later).
The first positive surprise is that this is actually a live CD and everything works out of the box.
ImageImage
That is not much common with Arch and everything works too Sound vbxdriver Internet it is all there so you can actually test this one first. Very good!
On the desktop you will find a Beginners Guide
Image And I had a short glance at it -It looks good! But as any good berserk I did not actually read it. That is for chickens :snooty: So I went on to the install symbol - an arrow with a blue background - and picked the stable installer.
Now we will see if this distro has overcome the biggest hurd with Archlinux - the installation!

So I click my way through and do only easy stuff like knowing where I am and what time it is etc. All easy and familiar stuff:
ImageImage
I simply click like any beginner except that I had some thoughts on my own regarding the size of the root. You will be fine by accepting everything that is suggested though. And before I know it I am finished:
ImageImage
Time to reboot then and remove the install media:
Image
Wow that is the easiest "Arch" install ever and everything is up and running. It is easier to install than OpenSuse or Ubuntu.
So installation wise the answer is YES Manjaro is easy to install and it does it perfectly :B

PS When you install you get the choice of the free install or the non-free install; I picked the non-free install to get all that forbidden good stuff.

Now I will start using it so sit tight......
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy Arch for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 03 Apr 2013, 18:18

The first thing I see after login is the red update button on the top right so I will click that later, but first I want to see if internet and sound etc is working and it is! +1
Flash and Java too - no problem :B
So time for the update then so I click the red star.....and nothing happens. :berserkf But after some time i tried a right-click and there I could pick the update option from a nice dropdown menu:
Image
It turns out that it is pacman itself who needs an update and that does make me a bit skeptical but I click Apply and wait for the result.
And wait....
and wait....
Why the h does this thing not give me a status of the progress? In good berserk tradition I get impatient and close that crap and start the pamac-manager from that dropdown menu. It is the synaptic of Manjaro.

And there i get the error that the database is locked and another instance of pacman is running etc etc...caramba! :f that is NOT newbie friendly.
So here is the command to use after you have closed all instances of those "managers"

Code: Select all

sudo rm /var/lib/pacman/db.lck

I forgot to mention above that the fantastic install also gives you the option of adding yourself to the sudoers so this works out of the box
Then you can go at it again and fall on your nose again :C
So do yourself a favor Open a terminal and enter this command:

Code: Select all

sudo pacman -Syu
Answer yes to everything and let it do the work!
That will install the new pacman version and after that repeat the command. Now the real update begins.... answer yes I want to replace etc etc.
And reboot just to make sure.
After that the pamac-manager does actually work. (But I will never use it - learn the pacman CLI commands instead that is safer).
.....
Well after the initial update pamac-manager did actually behave so I installed kde with it. You have groups and meta packages to choose from so there is no problem:
Image
So time to log out then and see if KDE is a choice when logging in:
Image :sImageImage
I must admit I am beginning to like this thing....
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy Arch for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 03 Apr 2013, 23:49

Conclusion:
The biggest turnoff regarding Arch is the install. It is beautifully documented but it is time consuming and not what a newbie should start with.
Manjaro uses the Arch infrastructur and the fantastic pacman which is better than the apt-get's, yum's, zypper's and even urpmi's of this world.
Yaourt is automatically installed and gives access to the Arch User Repos - AUR. So there is nothing that you cannot install.

You can start it with a Live CD and install from there. The start is exactly like SUSE where you can pick the resolution with F2 and set the language (like you all know from our Berserk live CD).

You get to install it without the slightest hickup and you can be as stupid as you like and only hit enter and end up with a working install - almost.
If you know your name and a password you will be fine.

That is impressive and the install gets a 9 out of 10. I deduct one point because it does not look all that good.

Manjaro keeps its promise here.... and then some. :B

First use of the update and the pamac-manager was bumpy and as a security it does not allow us to screw up the database. The problem is that it stays locked after you have closed all instances of the package manager so we had to remove the lock manually.
That is not user friendly :naughty:

What does work without problems is to ignore that red update button on a fresh install and open a terminal and run

Code: Select all

sudo pacman -Syu

Once the system is fully updated like that the pamac-manager and the update button will work as intended. At least it did here.

The package manager is good enough and lets you search find and install your stuff. Both xfce and kde work perfectly I was not able to fubar anything.
But since I only installed KDE basics I noticed that when I logged out of KDE it went to the CLI not back to the login manager.
Edit: This was only a matter of starting the KDE services in the default system settings panel :s I also installed Cinnamon (the Gnome2 fork) and it all works just fine.

Manjaro is rising on Distrowatch and it covers a market that Arch never will. So there is a demand. Yes - I would recommend it to a newbie as well as to a pro.
This is the kind of distro I would want on an OEM laptop I can buy in a computer shop.
Would I use it myself?
No - I use Arch. (and this is not Arch - but close enough :-D )

But this is a newbie friendly distro -promise kept.
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 15 Apr 2013, 12:35

On the update to version 0.8.5 I discovered something odd. According to the "marketing" version 0.8.5 comes with kernel 3.8.5 and I still had 3.7.

This is odd because on a rolling release you should simply be able to upgrade to get the latest.

It turns out that the kernel is not updated but they have an easy tool to do it called mhwd-kernel. With this tool you can install kernels in addition to those you have or replace them (not bad).
So I had to do a

Code: Select all

sudo mhwd-kernel linux38 rmc
to get the right kernel family - or the same family that comes with the iso.

People claim that this is a feature and that they want to be in control of their kernels etc. but that kind of defies the purpose of Manjaro: To be an easy newbie friendly distro.
Show me the newbie that wants to be in control of his kernel installation! He will hardly know what a kernel is - so leave him alone! :-D

Having said that: That kernel installation program is pretty functional and easy to use....
And Manjaro is still very user friendly - and has left the other major Arch spinoff - Chakra - behind according to Distrowatch.
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 15 Apr 2013, 23:55

I decided to install Openbox on this thing and the procedure is described elsewhere on this board so I will only say that it went just fine.
Image
Edit:
Did you just "Like" this on Facebook rolf? :-D
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 10 Jun 2013, 21:15

Here is a recent video that shows how easy it is to install:
:A
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby rolf » 11 Jun 2013, 03:00

That is one serious Linux advocate. :s
:think: Considering trying this again. Since I had trouble with the KDE community release, do I understand correctly a viable route to KDE would be to install the official XFCE version and install task-kde-minimal, after? Also, I miss the Mandrake/Mandriva choices to make individual package choices at installation time, especially to choose the Development group of packages. From time to time, I need to build something from source.

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 11 Jun 2013, 10:51

Yes you do understand it correctly. That is how I did it, so I have XFCE KDE and Openbox installed here - I am using Openbox but if my mood changes I can easily switch.

Task KDE minimal =
install:
kdebase
phonon-vlc or phonon-gstreamer as phonon backend
A ttf-* font package such as ttf-dejavu.
(This font installation is needed to avoid log-in problems:
https://bugs.archlinux.org/task/26012 - don't know if it has bin fixed in Manjaro but it cannot hurt to install that font anyway).

So the install would look something like this:

Code: Select all

sudo pacman -S kdebase phonon-gstreamer ttf-dejavu


The easy way out is simply to do a:

Code: Select all

sudo pacman -S kde


And the Nvidia proprietary drivers have been updated:
http://forum.manjaro.org/index.php?topic=4805.0
Runs beutifully here so Valves steam runs better here than on any Windows afaict.
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Getting comfortable with pacman

Postby viking60 » 11 Jun 2013, 11:45

In order to get comfortable with the great pacman (The zypper, apt-get, yum, or urpm of Arch and Manjaro) you can install pacmanxg4 from AUR

Code: Select all

yaourt pacmanxg4-bin


You only have to press buttons to perform all the tasks you need and this GUI will show you the output of the pacman command it excecutes.
Image
Here I have pressed the remove orphans button (without being root) Image

It can also query and update AUR packages. It only needs X so it will work in any environment.
And it is a good search and install GUI too
Image
As you can see it will keep a history of your last commands in the down right corner.

Now I want to only work with packages within the KDE category so I pick kde from the category dropdown list on the right:
Image
If you pick the KDE group on the right you will see everything that is installed if you do a

Code: Select all

pacman -S kde
.
Nice uh?

You will get most of this with the official pamac too - but not the pacman output of the command - and there are more features in pacmanxg4 like removing the cache and downgrading packages.
(You would naturally not want to remove the cache before you downgrade because the downgrade function needs the cache to keep track of your prior versions of the program)
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby viking60 » 12 Jun 2013, 00:07

And Just to repeat what I stated above:
If you install Manjaro and get the red button on the top right stating that there are upgrades for you:
DO NOT PRESS IT!
Go to a terminal and write:

Code: Select all

sudo pacman -Syu


This is more important now than ever since Arch has moved all libraries to a new location.
Once you have done that you can use pamac as usual - and press all the buttons you want (this only concerns the first update after install).
Manjaro 64bit on the main box -Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz and nVidia Corporation GT200b [GeForce GTX 275] (rev a1. + Centos on the server - Arch on the laptop.
"There are no stupid questions - Only stupid answers!"

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orion70
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Re: Manjaro an easy "Arch" for the common user?

Postby orion70 » 03 Aug 2013, 05:13

I'm enjoying manjaro.gaming with it and i am very surprised at the boost.good stuff.


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