Manjaro Love Affair, but Possible Cold Feet (Warning: Lengthy, Drawn-Out Newbie Rant, take accordingly!)

Story so far is that in december last year my old basement computer didn't agree with Windows 10 any longer, no matter what. LAN had been unstable for a year, seems like driver support for my old hardware was fading. Installed Mint on a whim, and it worked perfectly, rock solid unattended 150GB mkv files transfers to my main livingroom computer.

I've played with Linux superficially since the late nineties, installed Red Hat, Mandriva and so on, but my Linux friends were miles and a phone call away, just couldn't call them for every WTF moment, which were about every five minutes. Tried again, superficially, about every fifth year. The Internet grew in the meantime, and in December this year I had a big revelation: Everything you've wondered about is on the goddamn internet, you've got a problem of any kind, just look it up!

So, armed with this revelation, plus two weeks with hands-on experience, I'm converting all of my 30TB storage music & movies drives to ext4.

So far so good. Did the usual newbie distro-hopping, accidentally loaded a Manjaro XFCE live-usb to fix a partition problem, and just installed it on a whim. PANG! Instant love affair! My sluggish 2061p .mkv's opened instantly! I was afraid to click on them, seemed like they were just waiting to instantly jump out of the goddamn screen to attack me, all the while playing perfectly smooth!

SO, after some more poking around in Manjaro, and I'd already sworn rolling distros were not for me, I realize that there's just no going back from this. It's gotta be Manjaro in some shape or form. Arch is going to be a winter learning project, just to be better equipped to admin easier-mantained Manjaro on my main computer.

After a lenghty and draw-out thought-process (and a clueless, but crazily-in-love-with-Manjaro, first post here) I decided on some form of Debian-derived LTS on all the (workshop/garage/basement server) peripheral computers (needs to be set-and-forget), and Manjaro on my daily use livingroom computer.

So far so good. For two weeks I'm experiementing, learning, and generally having a hell of a good time with Manjaro. With a Clonezilla base and the possibility of Timeshift rollback, that I can always return to. But THEN my main (and Manjaro) computer breaks down with a motherboard issue. OK, I've just gotta wait a couple of weeks until the new hardware arrives, in the meantime I can do that Debian/Ubuntu LTS thing on the pheripherals!

And here is where I'm starting to feel goddamn cocky! A base Debian Buster minimal install? No problem! Just sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg xserver-xorg-core xfonts-base xinit x11-xserver-utils xfwm4 xfce4-panel xfce4-settings xfce4-session xfce4-terminal xfdesktop4, and the Terminal is your Goddamn Window to Complete and Utter Freedom! Just go from there!

SO, like Mickey Mouse in Fantasia, I'm letting it all loose. And it is great! This is complete freedom, anything you can think of is at your fingertips and at the terminal!

SO I decide to hang around at the Manjaro forum while I wait for my computer parts. Just to learn the ropes, be social, and help where I can in the Newbie Forum, with my meagre means.

But here is where I get The Big Scare. What I've learned so far, is that once you've overcome hardware compabilities, the goddamn world is at your fingertips. At least 90% of problems can be traced down to you doing something stupid. Trace 'em back, and you've learned something valuable that can be put to use in upcoming situations. Anything that don't kill you will make you stronger.

And I'm the type to rather spend a week figuring I've got to edit the *netcfg.yaml the right way to get newly installed NetWorkmanager to take care of the interfaces in my minimal install, rather than ''NetWorkManager is F____ Up and acting Crazy, Help Pleazzze!!''

Now, there is a (substantial) minority of help request in the Newbie Forums along the lines of ''I typed in the terminal "sudo f___-up", now my computer is f___ed-up, this is crazy, HELP PLEEZZE!'',

BUT the (relative) majority of Newbie Help requests seem to be from perfectly rational, normal human beings, just with some lingual limitations and cultural differences.

AND a lot of them are along the lines of this:

  • ''_did a packman update, now my computer is self-destructing, HEEELP!!''

  • ''had tearing issues, edited .xxx, now my gpu is talking to me through some sort of Cortana/Siri, it says it's gonna f__k me up seriously''

  • ''booted this morning, it came to a blank screen, received some sort of AI death threats from the OS, WTF''?

  • ''I've done nothing to my computer, everything worked yesterday, now on boot there's just a small line of some kind of friggin' fractal graphical glitch, and I hear faint, evil laughter from the speakers. PLZZZZ HELP!!''

THIS is where I'm getting goddamn cold feet! I realize that if you seek out a subforum devoted to problems, what you're gonna see is peoples problems. But from a short, two-week love-affair with Manjaro, in my mind she's like that first-girlfriend very image of innocence and good intentions. And now she's gonna cut you up with a pair of scissors.

I grew up with horses. First thing you've gotta do if that horse throws you down, is get the hell back up on it. AND, you've gotta show it that you're not afraid of it, they sense that fear. Now, the more I read In that friggin' Newbie Forum (and I'm as Newbie as anybody) the bigger friggin' fear I get! Am I gonna be Man enough to show that goddamn OS who's boss?? Is it gonna sense my fear? Am I gonna receive OS death-threats or OS self-destruction? Do I have the confidence to stop that in its tracks when it is unfolding? Should I just stop reading ''HELP PLEAZZZE!''-threads??

And no matter how cocky I am now, the world is at your fingertips through the terminal and so on, there WILL be a time when I've told Manjaro to f___ up, and then it is going to f__ up, JUST as I told it to do, and then I'll probably have to crawl back here, tail tucked, and ask for HELP PLZZZZE!


We need more details. :smiley:


You have the right attitude, I think you'll be just fine with any and all distros you choose to run :+1:.


(Moved to #general-discussion:rants-and-raves.) :stuck_out_tongue:



First, realize that maybe 80+% of the 'problems' you'll see on any support forum will:

  1. Have no bearing on you or your install.

  2. Deal with hardware that you don't have/use.

  3. Be from 'users' who might be able to identify a keyboard on a good day, and/or admit to being the actual cause of the problem (didn't bother to read announcement threads, etc).

  4. Refuse to do anything for themselves (let other members search, etc). In other words, they are Help Vampires.

If in fact that is your approach to your Linux journey, then you've got the battle almost won.

You've already indicated that you'll be figuring stuff out. A bit of common sense will mostly negate your fears; take your time, try to know what that command you've typed in your terminal will actually do. Don't blindly run that latest 'l33t hax0r' script.

And there are plenty of good folks here who will help you out.

Most of all: Have a blast!


Lovely - just lovely :crazy_face:

Like you I have seen quite some topics - being a member here for +3y.

The kind of topics you mention are usually created by Linux #newbies - solving issues requires some idealism and attitude and persistence.

Attitude like - hardware don't control me - I control the hardware - and you seem like the latter type - keep on going - you are on the right track :+1:

The majority of hard cases comes from having chosen the latest and greatest hardware wise.

From my 30+ computer experience (self employed) mostly on Windows with yearly safaris into Unix land - I have achieved some knowledge.

Of course my knowledge and chosen strategy also reflects the fact that I am no gamer but coder and sysadmin - so I have never had the urge for 8GB graphics to run high-end games at FHD.

  1. Never be the first adopter of technology - it will mostly cause grief and annoyance.
  2. Use Intel based hardware when ever possible.
  3. If you have the choice use Intel graphics.
  4. If you use PCIe graphics - ensure drivers are opensource - choose AMD graphics with some market time (1-2y).

--> 2b.Use Intel based hardware when ever possible. AVOID CPU Intel with mitigations !


Are there CPUs without? :crazy_face:


Sure. The 4004.


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Some great advice here, thanks all!

My fears have been calmed to a great degree. So when my hardware arrives (I specifically chose well-established hardware), I'm gonna get back up on that horse!

So my thinking now is that Manjaro will play nice if you treat her well and reasonable, she's not that first girfriend memory who'll suddenly turn on you with a pair of scissors, from out of the blue. It is not like you're walking around carrying live explosives.

Thanks again!

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Dont imagine that seeing problems being posted on a Forum is representative of the Majority experience! From what I,ve read over the years (2 or so!) many run into problems through messing with their system or mis-Install, or have some wacky hardware problem. Then of course there are the learning curve diversions.
But i wouldnt take this to be a majority issue.


Welcome. And as I said in the drinking thread, you'll get to Arch. It's not nearly as difficult as it seems. You seem like you'll fit in just fine here. And we all run into questions. Almost all of them are answered somewhere if you Google/search the forum. (pro tip if you can't find it here. Google your problem with 'Arch Linux' at the end). If not, there's a lot of people here who like the challenge of the new problems.


99% of your fear is totally misplaced, (as long as you have backups). With backups breakages are irrelevant, you simply perform a restore operation.

Timeshift is the easiest way to backup your system, but it is not 100% foolproof. To be 100% sure your backups are guaranteed to work (when needed) you should also occasionally image your system with clonezilla (or other imaging software).

With backups you should be worry free. Fsck up your system to your hearts content. With backups any breakage is easily corrected. Flyatter, that's how you learn. If you don't break sh1t you'll never learn anything.

Just giver, and fix it till it breaks (again).


Great advices!

Picking up Clonezilla was one of the first things I did, as I've been addicted to software like Northon Ghost, Acronis and lastly Maconium Reflect, through all my years with Windows. I simply feel naked without it.

It provides a great, safe, base for exploration and learning. Clonezilla is extremely powerful, my only gripe is that it is just a tiny bit cumbersome in use, for my simple purposes. With a program like Macronium Reflect, you just set it up and run it live, and then restore from boot.

My next project is to learn more about Clonezilla, and at least add it to the boot options. Otherwise, I'm on the lookout for a little bit more convenient program.



OK, so I want Clonezilla at boot? So I've gotta learn about GRUB. Just no way around it.

What I know about GRUB at present amounts to stuff like this:

''Did nothing, but my GRUB just ate iteself, now it's booting into something that seems like its based on symbolic logic from an alien civilization. PLZZZZZ HELP!!''

''Booted this morning to a blank screen, now GRUB only speaks Chineese. HEEEELP PLZZZ!!''

But in the end, you almost always end up with ''what the hell was I afraid of, it is as simple and logical as can friggin' be!'' Just gotta roll up the sleeves, spit in you hands, and jump into it.

So far, the beauty of the system is that it forces you to learn the right way, from the base and bottom up. Gotta know your hardware, get everything right in the bios. Gotta learn the boot process, what, how and why things are happening. Get your hardware to function as it should. Establish a secure base, and then you're off like an austronaut into the unknown. Intimidating, sure. But if it is like most other things, In the end you'll laugh about it. Gotta love it!


It seems you want to use Windows 10.

No, I don't want to use Windows 10.

Why do you write, that you have to do something stupid, when Linux is installed?

If you don't get it, it'll just take too long to explain, and it wouldn't be very interesting. So I can't help you with that! :wink:

O.K. :rofl:

Does anyone else want to write something now?

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