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Mint 12 to ?

post #1 of 15
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I just successfully installed Arch Linux ARM on my Touchpad and am eagerly awaiting my Raspberry Pi (placed a pre-order but it looks like it won't get to me till August at the earliest).

Am rather liking Arch Linux (been playing around for the last hour or so with pacman) and having used Mint 12 for the past few months, I'm thinking of transitioning to another distro. I use my machine mainly for work (statistical analysis and writing) and am currently learning Python (with Udacity!). I am also considering dabbling into Android development (will start with "kanging" ROMs and hopefully learn more along the way).

I'm debating between Arch Linux and Archbang - what do you guys recommend?
Edited by veblen - 3/27/12 at 11:27am
    
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post #2 of 15
It's pretty much whether you want to build Arch from scratch yourself or whether you want something already made and go from there. I believe that pretty much sums up the differences.
     
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post #3 of 15
With arch you get binaries but a ton of stuff is in the AUR only. And while I like Arch, Sabayon seems better polished and a bit more to learn. Though with both of those, your really learning distro specific source building. As both have it automated, sabayon has better source based package management by far... With that, you can also just get a binary distro and build packages from source yourself, even go so far as to make your own custom binary packages. You learn equally well with that too, so really it's all up to how you want to go.
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post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the responses, guys.

mushroomboy: Hmm, I never really considered Sabayon. I tried it out once a long time ago (eight or nine years) for the eye-candy but I'd imagine it's changed a lot since. tongue.gif I suppose the best way is to try all three in a VM and see which one I like best. I'd learn a lot in any case. smile.gif
    
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post #5 of 15
Yep, playing in a VM is a great way to learn, with snapshot as your "safety net" smile.gif

I'd steer clear of Arch if you require it for work - in my experience, it's not the most stable distro. Because the packages are bleeding-edge, there's obviously less testing, therefore more bugs (some could be fatal, as no package can be tested against your configuration). I'm not sure if ArchBang is any more stable, as I think it draws from the Arch repos?

You could always try Debian minimal, start with CLI then install your DE with apt-get. It'll be a lot more stripped than Mint, and offer a similar experience to Arch but with more stable packages. You can always point at the testing repos for more modern packages
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post #6 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by chemicalfan View Post

I'd steer clear of Arch if you require it for work - in my experience, it's not the most stable distro. Because the packages are bleeding-edge, there's obviously less testing, therefore more bugs (some could be fatal, as no package can be tested against your configuration)

I really hate this argument.

What /is/ your experience with Arch? And what /is/ your experience with Linux ( do you know the inner workings and what makes it tick )? Have you ever had an Arch install go bad because of a bad package?

They go hand in hand. If you know how to properly maintain your distro then there's absolutely nothing that'll go wrong that is 'fatal'. I personally have been using Arch for close to 4 years now, never had any issues that I wouldn't of on another distro with same program. I know a few other people here on these forums that could say the same. And thousands that use it as a daily os on the irc channels I spend my days at.

Even if you aren't exactly Linux savvy, then there's a very small chance that something could go wrong. Hell, I've had a Debian install go bad because of updating the kernels. Which has never happened to me in Arch and since it's bleeding edge, I've gotten quite a few kernel upgrades.

Same thing for my Gentoo install as well, using nothing but deemed 'unstable' packages and doing great.

For the average user, there's not much bad Arch (or any other bleeding edge distro)can do.
Edited by Shrak - 3/28/12 at 7:21am
post #7 of 15
My only gripe with the bleeding-edge aspect of Arch is the frequency of the updates. It gets a bit tiring when every week there's yet another 300MBs of packages to download for my laptop (admittedly this is as much my fault as Arch's as I have a hell of a lot installed on my laptop. The servers running Arch aren't nearly as bad).

I wont deny Arch has it's quirks, but all in all I've found it as reliable as any of the *buntus.
post #8 of 15
Yeah it definitely has it's quirks and questionable areas, I'm definitely not saying it's perfect. But I see that excuse about bleeding edge being thrown around a lot. Like people never using it but 'hearing' bad things about bleeding edge and it being 'fatal'. Which is just extremely over exaggerated the majority of the time. And honestly most problems I've had with Gentoo or Arch are problems that when looking up, others are having on every other distro.
post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys.

I actually do like "bleeding edge" since I've a thing for updating. In fact, I sometimes feel a tad disappointed if there aren't any updates when I run apt-get update in Mint. redface.gif Haven't had time to set up VMs yet but any thoughts on Archbang?

I also just realized that one of the programs I use - Revolution R - works only on Red Hat Enterprise, and for some reason, doesn't work on Fedora. It does work on CentOS I think - any thoughts on CentOS?

I somehow feel that my questions are rather silly; all distros will work just fine for my purposes. I guess I just want to delve deeper and would appreciate the experience and expertise here. smile.gif
    
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post #10 of 15
Archbang is still the same as Arch just instead of going through archs setup Archbang pretty much sets all the config files for you.
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