• First impressions of and suggestions for Antergos 2015.07.01

    A friend of mine bought a new PC recently and he requested I install Linux for him. I use Arch as my main OS at home so I thought Antergos (2015.07.01) would be a good way to get him an Arch install without all the config of installing regular Arch that can scare a lot of newcomers. I wanted to give him the quick and easy access to the unrivalled amount of constantly bang up-to-date software that running Arch brings. After installing it last night I thought I’d share the probs we encountered and my suggestions for improving Antergos and its installer, Cnchi.

    We ended up installing Antergos three times before we were successful. On the first time we just accepted the default partitioning option (‘Use all space on drive’ or whatever it says) and got half-way when I realised it prob uses ext4 by default (does it? I presume so but I didn’t check) and I wanted to install to XFS so we decided to abort the install. On the second attempt we used the existing partition layout Cnchi had created on our first install attempt (256MB /boot, 8GB swap and the rest /) but we edited it so than both the boot and root were set to XFS and we set boot to be mounted under /boot. This time the installer downloaded all the required files but then gave us some non-descript error to tell us Cnchi had failed when you’d expect it to be tidying up and installing GRUB. I can’t remember exactly what the error said but it was certainly a bit vague and didn’t explain why the installation had failed.

    Cnchi’s partitioner chose ext2 for the boot partition when we accepted the defaults but I also know that GRUB2 can boot directly from XFS under Arch as thats how I have my install configured so I don’t see why I shouldn’t have been able to use XFS for /boot if that is what caused the installer to fail. It seems to me Cnchi prob needs to have its partitioning checks tweaked so that others using the minimal installer don’t end up wasting hours waiting for a full install to download before being told their install has failed. If you don’t already use XFS by default, have you considered switching? Red Hat obviously think its the best filesystem now that RHEL defaults to XFS.

    Cnchi could also be improved by giving the user the option to choose which repos to download from (which regional Arch mirror to use) and I think it’d also be great to add a toggle switch to enable the multilib repos for x64 installs in the same way the installer lets you enable the AUR repos. It should explain that multilib lets you run 32 bit Linux apps under a 64 bit install. I had to manually enable it for my friend as two of the first apps we installed were Skype and wine.

    Why is pulseaudio not installed by default? Skype requires PA since 4.3 was released and, more importantly, I’ve never had any luck in getting sound to work under KDE unless PA is installed (it seems solid requires it for KDE audio) so I think PA should be installed by default, at least for those who choose KDE. It’s a quick fix but only for experienced Linux users who know how to fight and win in the multi-layered world of Linux audio. :)

    Finally, on a subjective note, I can’t stand the numix square theme! That’ll be because I also hate the Metro/Modern/flat and dull look pioneered by Windows 8 and Server 2012. I was really disapppointed with the look of the default Antergos KDE desktop but I’m sure someone will be into flat and square desktops?

    I know I’m complaining but I do appreciate what a great job Antergos is doing of making Arch easier to install and how much work is involved in putting a distro together so I’d like to say a big thanks to the devs. I’m only writing this because I’d like to see Antergos improve so keep up the good work!

    Thanks Antergos team!

  • As for this forum, I was unable to register without using my Google account because of a captcha that asks you to identify the colour of an advert below the registration form. To me the advert looked purple or violet but neither answer was accepted. Does the Antergos community not accept colour blind or partially sighted users? I don’t think I’m either but captchas should alternate anyway.

    Also, I had to submit this thread as a question. Just submitting it as a new thread didn’t work.

  • I can’t help with your other issues as I am still weighing up whether I should install antergos or not but regarding the registration system, I was on my forth and final attempt and also got stuck on the color question until I reailised the reason I could not see an advert, hence having no idea how to answer the question, was my ad blocker was in affect. Once I disabled the ad blocker for this site I could see it was “purple” and could proceed with registration. My point being is that I was less than 1 minute away from not signing up and completely dismissing anything to do with antergos. Sure, the solution was simple and due to me never been faced with an issue like this before but do you antergos guys really want to turn away potential users by making anything harder than it could be?

  • I tried purple at least twice but it didn’t work for me. I also tried orange which was the colour of the other ad as well as black and white out of desperation because that was the text colour used in the two ads on the page. I almost didn’t share my feedback as a result of the dodgy captcha system.

    I’m trying to minimize my use of Google products so I wasn’t keen on registering via Google but that was my only choice.

  • I can’t say that I’m impressed with Pamac being included as the default package manager regardless of the users choice of desktop. It seems to work OK provided you don’t install more than one package at a time. Every time I tried installing more than one package installation would only get as far as ‘Checking inter-dependencies’ and that’s where it stalls indefinitely.

    I’ve not tried all the GUI package managers for Arch yet as I usually do my package management from the terminal but I do sometimes use Octopi and I’ve never had any issues with it. I’ve installed multiple packages at a time with Octopi many times before without any issue and it certainly makes more sense to include Octopi or Appset as default when people choose KDE or LXQt as their desktop. Going off my experience with Pamac I think GTK desktop users would be better of with a different GUI package manager too.

  • I was hoping for some kind of response from at least one of the Antergos devs.

    Have I posted to the wrong forum?

  • im sure the devs have taken a look at your post and will use it as feedback 👌

    the Cnchi is being updated all the time. a new release will be out soon.

    i agree with the numix theme. im not a fan but themes are easy to change.

    the forum software being used on this site is very recently installed. probably take a while to work all the bugs out.

    package manager. again something really easy you can install. the great thing about a rolling release is once you get things setup the way you like it you wont need to reinstall anytime soon.

    some good points made. i would say antergos is still growing and we could see a lot of the changes you mentioned happen in the future.

  • @Dan-MacDonald Ditto here, with the color question. I tried orange, I tried purple, and I tried several other colors, just because I thought of them. Seems like, if you get it wrong once, it won’t accept any other answers. I am both green and red color defective - those colors could have been ANYTHING!

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