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Is Arch Linux a good choice for a Linux newbie

Arch Linux is a very popular enthusiast-class distribution of GNU/Linux that was started all the way back in 2002. It is therefore one of the oldest distros still in continuous development.

Arch is considered challenging for a beginner because it is not designed with them in mind, although one can use it. Arch has an enormous support wiki—one that I have consulted many times myself even though I have never used Arch itself—and expects its users to figure out solutions to the problems they may encounter. Most Arch users are already very experienced when they come to the distro, and move to Arch because they want the added control it offers them over their OS and experience. Basically, Arch allows you to mess things up in ways that most distros do not.

Using Arch is considered a badge of distinction in some Linux communities, affirming the person as a power user (although Slackware is much more challenging). “I use Arch btw” is a common meme in the Linux community.

The software itself is so well-done that Arch is the basis for other, more user-friendly distros like Endeavour, Manjaro, and Garuda. Many current Arch users started on one of these derivatives and then moved on to Arch itself.

I don’t use it or recommend it, but not because it’s bad. It’s actually a fine distro, but just doesn’t fit my use case. If you are interested in it, but inexperienced, try Endeavour, which is basically Arch reworked to be user-friendly.


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