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Series: Bow to Everyone – Introduction

Series: Bow to Everyone – Introduction

Thursday, May 25, 2023, Ralph Hersel

We enjoy writing about distributions because they reflect the diversity and strength of the free software world. In our chat channels, live discussions about the “right” distro always take first place. It’s fun to try new GNU/Linux distributions and discuss the pros and cons with others. There are waves among users who have chosen to jump distro as a hobby: sometimes it’s the biggest, most recent derivative, sometimes it’s a return to the roots.

For me, the trend has been towards pure distributions for years. My beginnings on Linux go back to 1995 when I tried Patrick Volkerding’s adaptation of Slackware called SuSE Linux. Several years later, I ditched Windows XP and replaced it with Ubuntu 6.10 “Edgy Eft”. After that I stayed true to “Circle of Friends” for many years, until the release of LTS 20.04 “Focal Fossa”. Then going to Canonical alone became too much for me to handle. After some distribution hopping, I ended up with Manjaro (GNOME) a ​​couple of years ago, which I still use on all my computers today and am very happy with.

But if you are a real geek, you will keep searching for the perfect solution for your personal operating system. I am interested in them original distributions: Slackware, Debian, Arch, Red Hat (Fedora), Enoch (Gentoo). I’m ignoring the original single and extinct distributions (SLS, Solus, etc.).

In addition to distributions, the desktop environment must be selected. There are not many originals: KDE Plasma, GNOME, Xfce, LXQt, LXDE, Cinnamon, Budgie, Deepin. The decision is easy for me: gnome. This is a personal choice. I find the GNOME desktop to be an intuitive interface that looks good and is easy to use even for beginners. Those who prefer KDE Plasma can also continue the series using this desktop.

For the ‘Arch for All’ series, I’d assume a current computer is available, and has at least an i5 CPU (or AMD equivalent) and 16GB of RAM in the box. The integrated GPU should be sufficient for graphics. In the later parts of the series, without being an Arch specialist, I will describe installation, configuration, package management, and customization to personal preferences. The fact that I don’t know much about Arch-Linux should get you a positive rating if you don’t know anything about it either. Welcome Arch-Gurus to add comments to my description. I will add useful comments to articles later.

The next part of the series is about a basic installation of Arch Linux with the GNOME desktop.