Link to an Interactive map of the Linux kernel
The following is a list of some Arch Linux based distros. For a more complete list, see: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Arch_Based_Distributions_(Active)
Antergos is a customizable system for the desktop. It started life under the name of Cinnarch, combining the Cinnamon desktop with the Arch Linux distribution. The project has moved on from its original goals and now offers a choice of several desktops, including GNOME 3 (default), Cinnamon, Razor-qt and Xfce.
ArchBang is an Arch Linux based distro that uses Openbox window manager. It’s available as a live CD. I tried ArchBang shortly after the project began. I really liked the clean, sleek setup and functionality the Archbang community put together with this distro. I also enjoyed reading the ArchBang forums, and find it an informative, friendly and pleasant place.
Arch Hurd is a port of Arch Linux to the GNU/Hurd platform. GNU Hurd is a computer operating system using the GNU Mach kernel as a replacement for Unix, released as free software under the GNU License.
Arch Linux ARM is the unified effort to port Arch Linux x86 to ARM based hardware by PlugApps & ArchMobile. I installed and use Arch ARM with a full xfce4 desktop on my Pandaboard, along with compiling all my usual AUR applications without issues. There is no video driver available to utilize the GPU hardware, so use the fbdev driver. Although just used as a test bed for ARM stuff, Arch ARM is hands down the most stable Linux distro I out of several I have set up on it.
Bridge Linux is currently one of my personal favorites, and provides an ncurses based installer out-of-the-box. Bridge uses the standard Arch repos and the AUR. Possible desktop environments are LXDE, Openbox, GNOME, Cinnamon, Xfce, and KDE.
Chakra Linux is a distribution heavily geared towards KDE4. All GTK apps are installed in a sandbox-like environment known as bundles. The project has several home-grown graphical utilites for installing and maintanence. Although under heavy development, it is reportedly suitable for everyday use. Some planned changes in the near future are switching from Pacman to Akabei for package management.
Kahel OS is an Arch based, Filipino created Linux Distro with the rolling release model. It uses the Gnome 3 desktop enviroment. Kahel OS was the first Linux distro to release a (non-beta) Linux OS based on Arch + Gnome. I tested Kahel back when it was using Gnome 2 and found it easy to install, work well, and it seemed highly polished and professional looking.
LinHES is a (Linux Home Entertainment System) distro based on Arch Linux and centered around MythTV, with the intent of being an HES-appliance. Using open source software combined with off the shelf hardware, you’ll be able to assemble a box that can serve as a PVR, Jukebox, Image Viewer, and Game Station.
Manjaro Linux is an Arch based + Xfce desktop environment. Other window managers and desktop environment are supported by the community. Manjaro comes with a custom GUI installer and additional scripts to install a preconfigured and out of the box working system based on Arch Linux. I’ve tested a Manjaro very early test version and found it to be another highly polished and professional looking distro. The early version of Manjaro worked very well for me until I tried to update it. In all fairness, I have to say this update issue has very likely been resolved since my experience with it.
Parabola GNU/Linux is a free, open source, GNU licensed rolling release distribution that uses no closed source software or bianary blobs. It is approved by the FSF and uses a Linux-libre kernel. The Parabola distro uses the Arch Repos and fully free replacements from the Libre Repo.
The original source of information for this article was the Arch Linux Wiki. https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Arch_Based_Distributions_(Active)
In this article, I’m going to briefly describe two Arch Linux derived distros, Bridge Linux and Manjaro Linux. Then I’ll explain the role and importance of selecting a Linux distro, based on the community and the availability of information and help within that community.
Although It’s been some time since I tested Manjaro, I found it to not be 100% compatible with the Arch repositories. I also had difficulty during updating Manjaro, but in all honesty, I was using a very early test version of the then newly produced distro. This is likely no longer an issue. Manjaro’s targeted users seem to be people seeking a beginner friendly Linux distro. I’d consider Manjaro a good alternative choice to Linux Mint, Ubuntu, or any one of the other Linux beginner friendly distros. Manjaro has a very polished and professional look to their website, the user interface and installer program, which in my opinion, is on par with Mint, Ubuntu, etc. The developers of Manjaro suggest not to use the AUR (Arch Users Repository), a repo containing software build scripts, maintained by Arch users. Manjaro is developed by a group of developers. For more info on Manjaro, check out their website. http://manjaro.org/
Bridge Linux on the other hand, is so far 100% compatible with all the Arch packages and the AUR. At this point in my testing, I consider Bridge Linux functionally, an Arch Linux drop in replacement or clone, with a real installer. Bridge Linux is more targeted towards more experienced Linux users, or at least users familiar with the command line, a willingness to spend time learning the system, and researching, configuring, and repairing their own Linux OS. Very similar to Arch in this aspect. Bridge has an ncurses installer that reminds me a lot of Arch’s installer from the past. A key difference being Bridges automatic hardware detection along with a multitude of unneeded xf86-video-drivers installed after the OS install. These can be removed of course to get down to what you prefer using on your system. Another departure from Arch is after installation, you are able to immediately boot into an xfce4, or whatever your choice, of a preconfigured WM or DE. Bridge Linux appears to be developed by a single person at the moment. For more info on Bridge, check out their website. http://millertechnologies.net/bridge.html
It’s difficult to compare the two distros to Arch in such a short article, but I’m leaving that up to you, the readers.
An important part of selecting a Linux distro involves the community and support. Lets use a fictional Linux distro in the following example called Elite Linux. Elite Linux is a great distro and it seems a high percentage of the community members are either coders, programmers, or general Linux gurus. This high concentration of Linux intellect, however, has trade offs. This group most certainly has the knowledge to help you with any problem or any situation you may find yourself in. The tricky part of this situation is presenting questions seeking help in the forums in such a way as to
not attract one of the elitist douchebags, more knowledgeable community members, to then be told to RTFM, (read the fucking manual) which in this case, the “M” is actually referring to man pages or Elite Linux wiki topics. Once this happens, the groupthink mentality obviously takes over. Sadly, I see this behavior thrown in the face of all to many new forum members.
In the Elite Linux wiki, I see very much deviation in the quality and detail of various topics. Some being very thoroughly covered, some being rather incomplete, leading to more questions than answers. This may seem random at first, but a closer look would reveal the topics more likely to attract new or inexperienced users, seem to be the ones mostly lacking in info. So you spend the time to have identified what is lacking in info on a topic using the wiki. You have research other sources and succeeded in accomplishing your task. You now go to the wiki to add missing info, and it’s promptly removed. But not without an explanation something like, as
an elitist douchebag, a package maintainer, I have obviously already memorized that info, so it’s therefore wiki clutter to me! Anyone has the ability to amend or add content to the wiki after registering. The problem with this system being, if the people controlling and editing the wiki content don’t want truly useful contributions to be included, you’re as an end using, non code contributing, not a trusted user, not a forum administrator, etc, up against the wall. You really have no recourse to try to include information, other than debate via “wiki messaging” with the elitist douchebag package maintainer that removed the wiki contributions to begin with.
I believe, based on watching the Elite Linux community evolve over the 4 years or so I’ve been around, that the community may possibly be trying to “weed out” the regular non code contributing end users via subtle things, such as not allowing proper documentation on things as basic as setting up networkmanager to manage network connections. How many new users would throw in the towel trying to use Elite Linux if for example, after the time consuming, manual, no installer method of installing, they couldn’t get a wireless network connection working via network manager?
Hypothetically speaking of course, if a group of Elite Linux gurus are the majority within a community, feel they are elite within a like minded group, feel it’s a waste of time to share with anyone below their level of knowledge on a subject, prevent access to information useful to less knowledgeable individuals than themselves, this would be an effective method to reduce the size of that community.
So in closing, be mindful of the importance of the role of a support community and the basic attitude, including any hints of rudeness or elitism within that community. Sometimes, attitude and willingness to help will prove as important or possibly more so than the ultimate combined technical knowledge or expertise level.
A while back, I did an Arch install in Virtual Box. The install went pretty smooth and specifically, the wired network connection worked out of the box. Great, no having to screw around or waste a bunch of time, it just auto connects on boot up and did what it should. Over time, I ended up installing a couple different DE’s / WM’s to check the current state of some alternatives to xfce. Down the road another month or so, I decided I should install network manager. I’ve installed it several times in Arch over the years without issue via referencing the Arch wiki.
This time the difference being systemd. Shouldn’t be a problem I thought. I was sure the wiki would be updated to reflect the changes brought about by the switch to systemd. Well, unfortunately, I found this to be not the case this time. I found myself trying to follow the wiki, but it seemed, the wiki was steering me in different directions, giving up just enough info in bits and pieces for me to realize I’d have to go off and search or study other subject. The Arch wiki on networkmanager turned out to be quite incomplete and not straight forward compared to other subjects I’ve used in the wiki.
I just wanted to install network manager. I didn’t want to combine it with educating myself on all the details and inner workings of systemd and systemctl, along with all the related commands, systemd terminology, how to set up service files or whatever, etc, etc.
After struggling for an afternoon to get network manager and my network connection functional, I thought, wow, the wiki’s missing something, but what? Although not entirely clear to me at the time, why, a last ditch effort to get NM working was to switch the default installed dhcp program to a different one from the regular repos. Viola!
So to make a long story short I came to a couple of conclusions after this rather challenging experience to get network manager setup.
1) The network manager program is for “newbies” who want or need an easy gui tool, -or- For people who could give a shit less about network technical crap as long as it works.
2)Network manager in the Arch wiki is complete crap lacking important info compared to other more “hardcore” subjects. Want to use vi or vim, tmux or screen, probably thorough and complete with usable informative commands, etc. Want to use a “newb” network tool, good luck with the douchebags controlling the wiki content. I attempted to clarify or improve the network manager wiki section. I was shut down rather instantaneously. My contributions were promptly deleted. I was informed, one of my systemd command wasn’t even right! ….. Hmm …. here’s a guy who knows, but could he take the time to correct my error so I could learn …. hell no, seemed he was just gettin off knowing I was wrong, and telling me so … I think this is an example of douchebaggetry at it’s best!
3) I’m done with supporting the Arch community. Moving to Bridge Linux for the time being. An Arch clone with a real installer, compatible with the Arch repos and AUR. I’ll gladly contribute to a community that does not have the elitism that Arch has grown to reek of over time. Wasn’t always like this for sure. Enjoyed the community and distro until recently. Arch is still a great, stable Linux distro. The support community unfortunately, no longer equal in quality. Lately I find reading the Arch forums a rather unpleasant experience, when all that elitism kicks in on an unsuspecting victim simply seeking help.
4) Why am I putting this on my blog? Oh hang on, I got side tracked. I just want to share what I have learned about installing network manager in Arch.
To get network manager running on a systemd Arch xfce install
First, install the following packages:
$ sudo pacman -S networkmanager network-manager-applet xfce4-notifyd
Next, using systemctl, check for any other network related services running:
# systemctl --type=service
# systemctl list-unit-files | grep enabled
You must stop and disable any network services listed so as to not to conflict with networkmanager. For example, my system had “net-auto-wired.service” listed.
I issued the following example commands to stop and disable it. You’ll need to change these according to what you’re using on your system.
# systemctl disable net-auto-wired.service
# systemctl stop net-auto-wired.service
Now lets enable and start network manager:
# systemctl enable NetworkManager
# systemctl start NetworkManager
This is what should be in the Arch wiki in the networkmanager, xfce section.
Click image for interview clip. Click here for full interview.
Bernanke mentions the possibility of an end to quantitative easing aka corporate welfare. Results are the violent sell-off in world markets.
LOL … How much more evidence do we need to see that this house of cards we ‘call capitalism’ is destined to fall.
The current economic system is rotten to the core.
It seems as though the biggest companies in the US need corporate welfare, like a heroin addict needs to feed his habit. World capitalism is broken and ‘free markets’ are nothing of the kind.
It’s clear that ‘freer’ markets have failed to bring anything to the people, except to the top 0.5% ridiculously wealthy billionaires. Instead, it started the process of slowly impoverishing the majority of people by the rich through monetary policy.
Since our government implemented the relaxing of bank regulation, private debt, public debt and personal debt have increased by orders of magnitude. It’s like building one’s house upon a house of cards that inevitably comes crashing down.
What’s needed to fix the banking system? Let’s start by bringing them under the control of the people, you know, the other 99.5 percent of the population excluded from the above mentioned ridiculously wealthy billionaires status. Split the banks up into manageable parts and bring taxation to the movement of capital so the ridiculously wealthy billionaires may be taxed much more than they are now.
I believe that if you regularly use free of charge, open source software, you should consider returning something for that use. That could consist of contributing in several ways. The following is from the Arch Linux website. https://www.archlinux.org/donate/.
Arch Linux survives because of the tireless efforts of many people in the community and the core development circle. None of us are paid for our work, and we don’t have the personal funds to sustain server costs ourselves.
There are many ways to help support Arch Linux. If technical development, documentation, or support aren’t your strong points, you could certainly help us by dropping a few bucks our way.
Since I’ve been using Arch for several years now free of charge, I feel an obligation to give something back.
I’ve contributed to Arch via documentation to the Arch wiki and on the Arch forums when possible. These contributions have usually resulted from figuring out some issues I’ve encounter on my Arch systems. If the issue isn’t mentioned in the Arch wiki and I feel that someone else may benefit from the solution, I’ll take the time to document it.
I’ve had a few situations where I’ve made suggestions for people who are more experienced on a topic to contribute to the Arch wiki. This has usually been when I feel I can’t come up with enough info on a topic to thoroughly cover it.
I’ve also recently decided to make a monetary contribution to the Arch Linux project through the click and pledge link on their Donation page https://www.archlinux.org/donate/.
If you use a Linux Distro that doesn’t have some type of funding or corporate backing to keep it going such as Ubuntu, openSUSE, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, etc. I’d ask you to consider making a donation….
I’m running Arch Linux with pure systemd. To log into the command line upon startup, bypassing starting X and GDM, I set up a Grub menu entry “Boot Into Shell”. The set up was for sysvinit and of course stopped working with systemd. I’m also running Grub “classic” as it’s now called. My opinion: All the enhancements that Grub2 has isn’t worth the trade offs of simplicity and ease of configuration of the original version, but back on track here….
This was an easy fix once I spent a few minutes looking a few things up in the Arch wiki and a quick edit to /boot/grub/menu.lst. Below is what was needed. Specifically, the “systemd.unit=multi-user.target” added to the kernel line with the previously added kernel parameters removed. This boots into the equivalent of the old inittab option of run level 3.
# (2) Arch Linux
title Arch Linux New 1 Boot Into Shell
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-linux root=/dev/sda6 ro systemd.unit=multi-user.target