What Linux distros do you all use?

kuwanger

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I got my time down to ten minutes (faster than the Ubuntu installer, regardless of hardware).

Great, and not the point.

Like I said, it can literally be fully installed and set up with a single line command. The installation guide is a non-sequitur.

So, I can with a single line command install Arch on any platform under any circumstance for any situation I might desire? Do I need an installation guide for that? :) Seriously, someone just needs to produce an honest step-by-step guide outline the options and considerations for installing Arch and make that the Installation Guide. It is not sufficient to make a relatively short wiki page with a bunch of links any more than I can call my new one page encyclopedia (which has many links to Wikipedia) complete.
 
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Which can honestly be done in a single line. When I was going to school, I took a beginner's class to Linux because it was a requirement for information security, and I spent the time finding out how quickly I could set up Arch in a VM before the class was over. If Arch is too tedious, though, there's always ArchBang.
Yeah. Heck, I installed Arch several times over in a VM before going through with installing it on my laptop, just to make sure I had everything down. Never took more than 10-15 minutes, IIRC.

Uh, yea it is...



The Installation Guide is pretty much a hyperlink nightmare. Compare that to Debian which actually tries to be a step-by-step guide instead of an attempt to exploit an extant wiki to fill in the gaps of an install. Gentoo as well is also a pretty straight forward guide trying to walk you through things.

Of course you can go off unofficial guides or install methods, but then that rather proves the point.
Funny, as I've often heard that the Gentoo Wiki is more intimidating to newcomers, if anything. Besides, speaking from experience, not every hyperlink is necessary in order to just pull off an Arch install.
 

kuwanger

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For me, the most important thing in any installation guide is laying out the requirements, what's offered (systemd/de/whatever) and base/mandatory/optional, a general outline of how the distro package management works, and just the obvious noobie and pro stuff like MBR vs GPT, what FS to pick and why, where disk or home folder encryption fit into things, lvm or not, how many partitions to have, etc. If I read enough of the Arch wiki by clicking enough links, I'm sure I'd eventually get all the info. But it doesn't seem organized in a fashion to inform people as they go. It often feels like you need to read figurative step 13 to have some useful insight into step 1.

Of course, all that's out the window the second you've got the experience setting up a distro and the installation guide/wiki is there more to just quickly jump to certain small aspects of interest. Coming at it from an outside without specific experience to the distro and possible no experience with Linux at all, doing a one-shot installation of Arch that is actually how you want setup doesn't seem doable. Of all the installation guides, I'd say Debian is the closest at providing that.
 

Ev1lbl0w

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I started with Ubuntu but a friend of mine conviced me to try Arch.

So far so good, I only have a 1/3 chance that after a pacman -Syyu my graphics driver will screw me over and drop me to tty!

buuuuuut things considered, using Arch actually teached me a f**kton of stuff related to how computers in general ;)
 

RattletraPM

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Mostly Debian for my tiny ARM "server" and Xubuntu for everything else. I don't use a Linux distro on my main desktop PC but I have to admit, it's mostly because I'm lazy. I'm definitely moving on from Windows 10 the next time I have to reinstall my OS for any reason, setting up a dual-boot environment in case I ever need Windows again.
 

FAST6191

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Mostly Debian for my tiny ARM "server" and Xubuntu for everything else. I don't use a Linux distro on my main desktop PC but I have to admit, it's mostly because I'm lazy. I'm definitely moving on from Windows 10 the next time I have to reinstall my OS for any reason, setting up a dual-boot environment in case I ever need Windows again.
Why not set up windows in a virtual machine?
 

kuwanger

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Why not set up windows in a virtual machine?

Because the only good use for Windows is gaming? Okay, somewhat teasing on that point, but It's generally easier to just keep a whole Windows system than a VM or dual-boot, but that's obviously only really an option if you're willing to spend the money on multiple systems.
 

ry755

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*** Actually tried the 14.04 -> 16.04 -> 18.04 upgrade but beyond breaking in various ways (which was likely my fault with all the ppas), systemd was basically entirely useless with the boot error just dumping me to a terminal and saying "look at the log" which didn't actually include a meaningful error. End result, I ending up installing 18.04 clean (saving my home) and beyond the pain of reinstalling all the programs again, it wasn't that bad.
When I upgraded from Fedora 27 to 28, my Wifi driver crapped out and no matter what drivers I tried to reinstall, it wouldn't work. I ended up just reinstalling Fedora 28.

I'm probably just going to reinstall whenever I need to do a full distro upgrade in the future.
 

kuwanger

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Edit: This isn't easier to set up though.

Right, you have to get the right hardware. My own hardware (for whatever reason) has buggy IOMMU (may be kernel related too, not sure) and one of the PCIe slots is listed as PCIe 2.0 x16 "for PCI Express x4 lane width graphic cards". Uh...yea... So, I just went with another system. Really, if AMD or Nvidia would get around to adding vGPU support to their consumer graphics, that'd really sell me on them. There's just no reason to have to buy two whole GPUs when you're only gaming on one of them. :/ Definitely, I'd be a lot more inclined to buy one better one than two cheaper ones, so I can't even say that its some sort of marketing "smart" move* to get me to buy more GPUs.

* I presume Linux users aren't even a blip on their radar as far as some sort of marketing strategy. I'd presume it's more the cost of implementing it and being able to sell commercial GPUs at significant markup to include the feature.
 

RattletraPM

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Why not set up windows in a virtual machine?
Others already (partially) ninja'd me but the answer is gaming, as well as some productivity apps which are not available for Linux, or at least don't have good alternatives.

I've also looked at GPU passthrough to run Windows in a VM with near native speed but I find it too much of an hassle to do right now, not to mention that you need a secondary GPU for it, which I don't have (I could buy a really cheap one of course, but the whole convoluted setup process still remains).

Truth be told, I've found alternatives and replacements for almost any Windows app I use and supposedly Proton works really well with a lot of Steam games so I might need to use Windows way less than I think, but hey, as long as I have those few apps I'll (sadly) have to rely on Windows from time to time.
 

CuriousTommy

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My own hardware (for whatever reason) has buggy IOMMU (may be kernel related too, not sure) and one of the PCIe slots is listed as PCIe 2.0 x16 "for PCI Express x4 lane width graphic cards". Uh...yea... So, I just went with another system.

Yeah, I lucked out on my hardware. I didn't intend to use it for GPU passthrough at the time, but everything managed to work out in the end. I even got MacOS running on it!

There's just no reason to have to buy two whole GPUs when you're only gaming on one of them.

I could see this argument for most AMD CPU, but mainstream Intel CPU do have iGPU built-in (unless you want to also use the GPU on Linux).

Really, if AMD or Nvidia would get around to adding vGPU support to their consumer graphics, that'd really sell me on them.

If they are not willing to add it to the mainstream desktop, they should really add it to the laptops. I could see a lot of cross-platform developers buying these machines. Regardless, it is really dumb that this isn't mainstream.
 

kuwanger

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I could see this argument for most AMD CPU, but mainstream Intel CPU do have iGPU built-in (unless you want to also use the GPU on Linux).

Before getting a lot of Windows games, I tried to buy games that worked on Linux. Eventually though it just got to the point I decided to gamble on WINE. That didn't work great (like a 30% success rate, even with tinkering), but they were all [relatively] cheap bundles and always came with enough Linux games so I didn't feel cheated (just unlucky). In theory I could run all my Linux games in Windows (I think all of them have Windows version), but that's just silly IMHO. This system actually has an APU powerful enough to game (mostly) on Linux but again because of the buggy IOMMU it's a moot point. Regardless, even if one is an integrated GPU, technically you're still buying two. :)
 

Mr. Elementle

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Right now I'm running ubuntu with the unity trusty desktop, but i'm thinking about upgrading to gnome with either xenial or bionic soon, i'm just not a huge fan of how the gnome desktop looks, i like unity but anything past trusty crashes on my laptop.
 

FAST6191

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Others already (partially) ninja'd me but the answer is gaming, as well as some productivity apps which are not available for Linux, or at least don't have good alternatives.

I've also looked at GPU passthrough to run Windows in a VM with near native speed but I find it too much of an hassle to do right now, not to mention that you need a secondary GPU for it, which I don't have (I could buy a really cheap one of course, but the whole convoluted setup process still remains).

Truth be told, I've found alternatives and replacements for almost any Windows app I use and supposedly Proton works really well with a lot of Steam games so I might need to use Windows way less than I think, but hey, as long as I have those few apps I'll (sadly) have to rely on Windows from time to time.

"right now" might be the key word. I recall similar things for USB pass through when that was still a new tech. Today it is old hat and a few button clicks. I could repeat that for a variety of other tech. That said if the worthwhile GPU devs are going to continue to move away from nice hardware and try to gate things off* then so it goes.

That said most windows things I want these days are older legacy programs for certain things where performance is less of an issue than their ability to manipulate files or generate numbers.

*I am still bitter about the old "make a server grade board using one of the old designs but leave off the fancy stuff for high uptime and sell that to people wanting good stuff" design concept going away.
 

RattletraPM

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Before getting a lot of Windows games, I tried to buy games that worked on Linux. Eventually though it just got to the point I decided to gamble on WINE. That didn't work great (like a 30% success rate, even with tinkering), but they were all [relatively] cheap bundles and always came with enough Linux games so I didn't feel cheated (just unlucky). In theory I could run all my Linux games in Windows (I think all of them have Windows version), but that's just silly IMHO. This system actually has an APU powerful enough to game (mostly) on Linux but again because of the buggy IOMMU it's a moot point. Regardless, even if one is an integrated GPU, technically you're still buying two. :)
Yeah, Wine is practically hit or miss, there's just no in between. That's why I was excited when Valve announced a fork made specifically for gaming including more advanced stuff like using Vulkan by default instead of OpenGL. Plus it's apparently compatible with many other titles than just the official ones, so hey: I don't see many gamers suddently making the jump because of it, but it's definitely a nice bonus for the ones who were already thinking about it or were undecided :D

I could see this argument for most AMD CPU, but mainstream Intel CPU do have iGPU built-in (unless you want to also use the GPU on Linux).

If they are not willing to add it to the mainstream desktop, they should really add it to the laptops. I could see a lot of cross-platform developers buying these machines. Regardless, it is really dumb that this isn't mainstream.
I've got a Ryzen 5 1600 which hey, don't get me wrong, I absolutely love this CPU especially considering that I've overclocked it no problem @ 3.8 GHz with little to no voltage increase! But still, no iGPU for me to even attempt passthrough...
That aside, I remember reading somewhere that it's possible to switch GPUs before using your VM so that you always get the best of both worlds, but of course it's only going to make an already complicated setup even more convoluted.

"right now" might be the key word. I recall similar things for USB pass through when that was still a new tech. Today it is old hat and a few button clicks. I could repeat that for a variety of other tech. That said if the worthwhile GPU devs are going to continue to move away from nice hardware and try to gate things off* then so it goes.

That said most windows things I want these days are older legacy programs for certain things where performance is less of an issue than their ability to manipulate files or generate numbers.

*I am still bitter about the old "make a server grade board using one of the old designs but leave off the fancy stuff for high uptime and sell that to people wanting good stuff" design concept going away.
I feel you there, the GPU market in its current state is a hot mess with NVidia getting away with a lot of anti-consumer practices simply because they have a monopoly and AMD trying to keep up and failing basically everytime (sometimes by a hair's lenght, but that isn't enough for most gamers who want that sweet, sweet 2/3 -ish FPS gain... :() It doesn't help that NVidia is a complete asshole when it comes to supporting the open source community either. Luckily I've got an RX 580 in my main rig, which I bought because I've found it at a good price at the time and also from what I know the Radeon open source drivers are actually gaming capable unlike noveau, so at least I won't have to put up with NVidia's BS. I don't know how much it'll help with a possible distant-future GPU passthrough setup but something tells me once I make the switch I'll gradually drift away from Windows so much that a "pure" VM setup will become viable, if not optional :rofl2:

About what programs I use, Vegas is one of them. It runs like crap under Wine and while there are open source video editors out there no one comes even close to what Vegas can offer, plus it really likes direct hardware access for obvious reasons. That aside, not considering the usual games that don't run well under Wine/Proton, I admittedly don't have much else going on with the exception of a few scripts and stuff I've made for myself, which honestly wouldn't be too bad to port to Linux. However I'm also developing Snickerstream in AutoIt right now (windows only) and it might not be a good idea to run it in a VM as it could have an impact on performance (it's a lightweight app, sure, but you never know) as well as adding a few hurdles while connecting (and NTR CFW is already "lunatic" as it is) so all things considered I might just install Windows on a beater drive and be done with it for the moment. Once the right time comes, I'll be more than happy to virtualize it all! :P
 
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