• Looking to convert from Mint, what things should I be thinking about?


    I’ve been on Linux for about 6 months now and want to get off the training wheels. I consider myself to be C+ Linux user so far. I don’t like waiting months on end for a new (current version, not nightly) VLC backported update from the ubuntu devs. I’m most familiar with MATE but I fear, looking at the arch wiki, there’s “issues” with that DE (not to mention the gtk3+ transition.) Some of the apps I use exclaim to be “gnome only” (eg. Corebird for twitter) but work fine in Mate. For some reason Mint users are so afraid of breaking their system they label security kernel updates as dangerous (irony?) and they defer all pre-installed apps (VLC, LO) to the ubuntu repos (which again, take literally forever to get backported.) And there are people on their forum who say that uninstalling preinstalled apps like LO will literally destroy your system. I’m not dissing Mint, it’s just that their dev cycle is excruciatingly slow and it seems like a lot of their userbase is naive about updating things and complacent with really outdated software.

    Here’s some random Linux-related items I’m familiar with:

    • Firejail – very familiar and refuse to run VLC without it.

    • Gufw – very familiar (the only reason why I use this is for custom rules, if there’s a way to route all traffic through “tun0” per openVPN (if and when the VPN server goes down remotely) to prevent IP leakage that would be ideal.)

    • OpenVPN – very familiar on the cli.

    • 7z – very familiar on the cli (caja’s archive manager has old legacy options which I’m disappointed about)

    Assuming:
    openJDK plays nice. #minecraft

    Not sure about:

    • how some Qt cryptocurrency wallets play…
    • AMD drivers for a 280??? Debian Jessie was a questionmark and Ubuntu 16.04 was a “no.” AMD only supported 14.04 so there was issues getting steam to even launch in 16.04 (yes I know how to patch it and force the mesa drivers to load.)

    Have absolutely no idea about:

    • Wireless drivers. As some of you may know, 16.04 has shoddy wifi support on some devices and I’m not an exception. Here’s the debian fix I use for my realtek patch that works: https://github.com/pvaret/rtl8192cu-fixes

    It’ll be a shame to lose the debs, but my understanding is that most of the deb apps that are in common use are indeed available through the AUR. I don’t know how to the “correct” way to recover from a borked update – I think that’s probably the thing I should focus the most on.

  • Hi,

    If you are used to apt-get from Mint, this page will help you:
    https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Pacman/Rosetta

    We use the gtk3 version of MATE (1.16 at the time of writing).

    You can check which packages will be available to you in these pages:
    www.archlinux.org
    aur.archlinux.org
    http://build.antergos.com/repo/antergos/packages

    I’m not a fan of AMD. It had bad support in the past. This is changing though. If you need to use Catalyst drivers I’d say forget about it… cause they do not work with newest Xorg versions. You’ll have to downgrade Xorg. There are new drivers for the latest AMD cards (maybe you’re lucky): https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/AMDGPU

    About wifi, you’ll need a cable connection if Antergos does not detect your wifi. Just run the livecd. If it works in livecd it means that it can work after installed (maybe some setup is needed after the installation).

    More info: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Wireless_network_configuration

    Feel free to ask if you have more questions.

    Cheers!

  • Thanks for the reply. Just some more comments really:

    I’ve heard about these new amdPRO drivers, they look like still alpha testing to me. Plus, my gpu is an r9-280, codename “southern islands” 1st gen GCN architecture. Looks like for now, 2nd gen is more supported but in the wiki there is a hopeful line of, “[southern islands is] more experimental than Sea Islands and coming only in Linux 4.9”

    Here’s some more info on the card on Mint 18:

    Tahiti PRO [Radeon HD 7950/8950 OEM / R9 280]
    bus-ID: 01:00.0
    Display Server: X.Org 1.18.3 drivers: ati,radeon (unloaded: fbdev,vesa)
    GLX Renderer: Gallium 0.4 on AMD TAHITI (DRM 2.43.0, LLVM 3.8.0)
    GLX Version: 3.0 Mesa 11.2.0
    Direct Rendering: Yes
    

    Debian Jessie says fglrx (amd proprietary) doesn’t work with the “gnome” desktop so one would assume it would also cause troubles in MATE as well.

    I have no real use for catalyst – it was fun cranking up all the dials to 120% for a very solid 60c OC in windows (#amdHatersAndOvenReferences), but I’m more of a filthy casual gamer anyway who doorhugs every round. That being said, I know fglrx is smarter about auto-fan management and possibly better gaming performance (at least during the small time I was on Mint 17.3 (Ubuntu 14.04))

    Don’t forget what Linus has said about nVidia in the past as well. Maybe we should all use intel iGPU’s from now on. :joy:

  • Hi and I’m glad you’re thinking about Antergos. I used *buntus for years and recently moved to Antergos. The move from Debian based to Arch does involve some learning but the documentation is excellent, the Antergos forums are great and besides its not different if you are comfortable with the terminal in Mint you’ll be fine. The biggest thing for me was learning pacman and how arch handles it’s repos(mirrorlists). These are small things and the forum has lots of helpful members.
    I currently have an AMD laptop and use the ATI. It works well for my purposes—although, suspend is an issue. You’ll find most of what you need in the Arch repos and the few things not in them are in the AUR.

  • honestly dont think you will have any issues jumping over. anything you need help with just ask in the forums.

    i think very soon your card will be supported by AMDGPU. im using AMDGPU on an RX480 and works great. no issues.

    you will enjoy the rolling updates on Arch.

  • I too came from Debian based distros (Ubuntu and Mint). I’m far from an expert, but I’m loving this distro and let me just say, Pacman > apt-get

  • You know one of the reasons why I kinda want to jump ship especially from ubuntu derivatives is because of what I perceive is the future commercialization of Canonical, with their snappy “store” and proprietary “live patching” service of the kernel. Maybe Richard Stallman was right after all and more people should have listened to him. Mint offers a modified debian-only flavor called “LMDE,” but as you might have guessed, it’s painfully out of date and really basic components like gcc are really far behind and systemd isn’t enabled by default. They juggle KDE, MATE, XFCE, and Cinnamon releases and I don’t think LMDE is a priority for them.

    I was open the idea (and even tried) going straight-up vanilla debian and installing the mate desktop, but it’s just a mess trying to enable SID backports and updating multimedia repos since they employ an even stricter approach to keeping a “stable system.”

    I’ve never tried tried openbox, maybe that’s something worth looking into but I hope the apps I regularly use (again, claiming to be “gnome only” won’t complain too much.) As long as I have a compton implementation that gets rid of screen tearing on my dual-monitor setup, I’m happy. Along with my conky configs :smiley:

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