Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 17th Feb 2009 17:34 UTC
Linux The ArchLinux Release Engineering Team announced the official release of the 2009.02 ISO after a long period of intense development. This distribution is among the first to officially support the new Ext4 filesystem. I've always noticed that Arch seems to be quite popular among OSNews readers, and I'm interested to know from our Arch users: why? What makes Arch such a good Linux distribution?
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Arch Pro Bullet List
by TheMonoTone on Tue 17th Feb 2009 19:11 UTC
TheMonoTone
Member since:
2006-01-01

* simple text file configuration
* very fast package manager
* no big "lets break everything" updates
* no half-assed patches that break more than they fix. I'm looking your way fedora/(k)ubuntu, please stop patching crap, you just make it worse.
* aur
* packaging things is super simple compared to the mess that is rpm/deb config files
* they never try to make overly fancy gui's that fail.
* chakra project, by far my favorite set of kde4 packages of any distro

Really you can argue that lots of other distros have a few of these things, but none of them have all of these things or equivalents.

Arch has everything I like about linux and really follows the way opensource development goes. Ubuntu/SuSE/Fedora with their semi-annual releases tend to fail more often than not at creating a set of stable packages. It never fails that some software a month or less after one of these releases gets updated with a ton of fixes/features added and its near impossible to upgrade because they would have to upgrade 20 other packages along with it. So they just wait another 6 months or more, during which numerous releases have gone by for some things and none for others, only to try again to create the mythical stable package set. Idiocy, if you ask me.

FOSS is constantly being worked on and the distro's should reflect that. Arch linux does a very good job of reflecting the reality of FOSS while still keeping it sane (no compile time, slight delay/testing period/upstream patches sent etc).

I've had fewer breakages with arch than any other distro ever. Compared to the nightmare that the rpm distros quickly become, typically because I want some software that isn't in their repo. Arch makes it easy to package this stuff myself so I *never* have crap in my system that isn't a package. RPM makes it a hassle, so I just don't bother if I'm in that situation. I know I'm not alone there...

Edited 2009-02-17 19:13 UTC

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