I was feeling a little restless a few weekends back, and Fedora on my laptop was not exactly doing it for me, so I decided to try a new distro. Looking at what the cool kids are using, I grabbed Manjaro, which is Arch-based. Having zero experience with Arch had me kind of excited to try this out.
The process of getting this distro to install was fraught, due to UEFI restrictions and Microsoft sticking its nose where it has no business. I did finally get it installed, but I ended up not only replacing Fedora, but also the Windows 10 install that was also on the hard drive. I was really hoping that Manjaro would be the epic distro that I was dreaming of.
I should have recognized the install issues as signals from The Universe telling me to stop what I was doing and to seek a different path, but onward I pressed. Seriously, I should have listened.
Manjaro’s tagline should be “A Linux distro for single people without children or other responsibilities.” Yes, you can twiddle a thousand different settings to get it to work just the way you want, but this is exactly the same reason that I prefer iOS to Android: I don’t have the time or desire to twiddle settings any longer. I have constant interruptions and a 100 other things going on in the real world. I need my tech to work with a minimum of fuss or supervision on my part. Yes, I wanted to try something new; to keep my mind malleable with a new puzzle. But this was just too much. I wanted a crossword puzzle, but found myself in an M. C. Escher painting. Twiddle one bit, and then the option to undo that, if you do not like the result, is magically gone or no longer working. Ducky.
And then there are the the package manager(s). It has several package managers. Sure, having options is great and all, but not for something like this. As if APT and YUM weren’t bad enough, here we have PACMAN and some other version of the same. Yes, it is a nice name (far better than Yellowdog Updater Modified), but after 20 years of Linux usage, I have the commands to make APT and YUM work burned into my brain. I have not found any sense in the flags that you can set in PACMAN. Why would I possibly want to do a sync with a package manager? Yup. I am an old. Get off me lawn!
To its credit, Manjaro does look nice. But, as a person who spends most of his time in the terminal, this is kind of lost on me. I am using the GNOME version of, well, the ISO I downloaded is 18.1.5 (wow! that was a month ago already!), but looking at the web site now, it is 19.0.2. I guess that it is under active development! And I thought Fedora was updated too much for my interests at this point! AHAHHAHAHA! But, while poking around for that version info in the menu system, I noticed that none of the apps actually launch when clicked. Seriously. WTH? I had to Google for a CLI answer, which negates the point of the application menu system, and renders the good looking desktop pointless. Thanks, Manjaro.
Needless to say, Manjaro and I are not getting along. I am going to look around for a different distro to try. I could keep going with this old man rant, but other things are currently more pressing.