If I’m not mistaken I’ve been using Linux for about 2 years, the story is the same as most people, Windows started doing strange things then I got frustrated and moved to Linux and surprisingly moving to Linux didn’t burden me too much.
It’s also worth noting that this is not my first time using Linux as I have a bit of experience playing with centos, debian or ubuntu based cloud servers and I was also dual booting Linux in my high school days.
My journey from the beginning of using Linux on my personal laptop may not be too interesting. The first distro I used was Linux Mint because when I was in high school Mint was quite famous and looked like Windows and also I was familiar with apt. But after that I didn’t use Linux at all during my college years and only used Windows.
After some time passed and I completed an internship at a company, I felt that Windows started doing strange things like filling the C: partition to the brim even though I was one of those people who didn’t like installing a lot of things. I even put my Steam library on another partition even though it was at a slower speed and the C: partition was only used for the system partition and I was very sure I didn’t have a virus because the CPU, RAM, and other usage was very normal. But what makes me really move is because windows is very easy to reach thermal throttle when I play games. I’ve tried several software to limit CPU speed and even replaced the laptop’s default thermal paste with a good thermal paste but still have the same results. And I think that was the peak of my frustration to continue using Windows so I totally migrated to Linux. I tried to find a distro that I thought would fit what I wanted and I thought Manjaro fit what I wanted and needed at that time.
So why Manjaro? Because I wanted an Arch-based distro and I liked the performance of pacman and rolling releases made me a bit interested and I was also lazy to install Arch manually. However, Manjaro has some disadvantages, first I use a laptop with 2 GPUs, Intel and NVIDIA or commonly called Optimus-based Laptop and the driver installation software provided by Manjaro is in my opinion very confusing so I prefer manual installation of NVIDIA drivers rather than using their software, there is also Pamac which is supposed to facilitate graphical software installation but Pamac often chooses to crash. there are other things that I forget how many problems I encountered while using Manjaro and I think I only used Manjaro for less than 1 month.
After finishing with manjaro, I think I want to use Arch instead of Arch-based distros. The installation is not difficult because I have tried it before in a VM, it’s just that my slow internet makes it take a long time during the pacstrap process. I think when I want to use Arch I will use Window Manager instead of Desktop Environment because what’s wrong with trying? I chose i3 because the configuration I thought was not too difficult and could be made modular. In the end, I’m quite comfortable with using Window Manager because it looks simple and efficient. But not everything was easy because I had to install drivers manually, I had to set up the desktop-portal, had to set up application themes both GTK and QT, some had to add environment variables, there was also ssh-agent, gpg-agent and others. although I like the workflow of Window Manager I have to set up all kinds of things to make my laptop function like a normal laptop.
After I gave up on Arch, I went back to the Arch-based distro EndeavorOS. EndeavourOS to me is just an installer for Arch given a different name. EndeavourOS also gives a few choices of Desktop Environment or Window Manager but I chose KDE because I don’t want to go back to setting all kinds of things so that I am comfortable. EndeavourOS is the distro that I have used the longest among the distros I mentioned before because there are not many things I have to change because it has been prepared by the EndeavourOS team and I am also comfortable and familiar with KDE. So what’s the problem? Some time ago, grub had a problem because they added a new thing and made some computers unable to enter grub at all, I decided to move to systemd-boot because of that problem. systemd-boot worked normally for a long time but for some reason when I did a pretty big update I couldn’t get into the login manager at all, I thought it was easy I would chroot and move to grub again because they had already fixed the problem a long time ago and I had also experienced how to install the bootloader. this is where a new problem arises. grub is not a problem because it can appear but mkinitcpio always creates the kernel in a subfolder and not in the root folder of
/boot here’s an example
that’s an example of the
/boot usually found when using grub and mkinitcpio but my
/boot looks like this
└── c98as7dksjd[random character]
this makes grub unable to detect kernel files at all, I’ve tried searching everywhere but I didn’t find anyone with the same problem and even in the arch wiki mkinitcpio shows that the generate is not in a subfolder.
I actually solved that problem by migrating from mkinitcpio to dracut, but I have a fear that because my laptop uses NVIDIA there might be problems in the future because the pacman hook is only for mkinitcpio.
I switched to Fedora, previously I did not mention that I actually tried Fedora first before EOS, but because at that time I used Fedora GNOME which I was not comfortable with, so I used it only briefly. But now I’m using Fedora KDE which I already know the ins and outs and it’s guaranteed to be comfortable. Fedora actually also has some disadvantages such as not having a website to search for applications like arch and dnf is slower when compared to pacman, their repository also has quite strict rules about what applications can be uploaded, but those things I can understand because I want a more stable system and there is RPMFusion anyway. what makes me a little surprised is that installing NVIDIA drivers is easier in fedora when compared to Arch, because in Arch you have to add kernel parameters and kernel modules and other things to make you really sure that NVIDIA will not have problems. Whereas Fedora only needs to add one line of X11 configuration after installation if you want to use NVIDIA as the main GPU. Another thing I like about Fedora is that even though they are a point release, their release cycle is fairly fast.
I can’t comment much on fedora yet and I hope I won’t be disappointed in the future. So that’s all from me for now, see you soon!