My journey to Arch (and EndeavourOS)

Back in the early to mid 2000’s I was basically going back and forth between Debian and Ubuntu (and their derivatives). The occasional fling with Fedora and openSuse and other smaller distros. The stereotypical distro-hopper, I suppose. I had long been aware of Arch. I just didn’t feel comfortable trying to install at the time. There were so many horror stories and tales of extremely lengthy and difficult installs.

So I started my Arch journey with the Arch-based distro Cinnarch in 2013. I stayed with them through Antergos. Later I moved to Manjaro. Stuck with them for a few years. For the most part, I stayed away from GUI apps for program installing and updating during that time and tried to stick with the command line. Though I did slip early on and use pamac GUI and/or Octopi from time to time. It was those experiences that got me to fall in love with the idea of Arch.

By around 2020 or so, I had finally installed actual Arch on my old HP Envy laptop using the instructions on the Arch Wiki. It took 3 times, but I got it installed. Used it as a daily laptop driver until my laptop died in December, 2023.

Enter the idea of trying to install Linux on my old MacMini. I did some research and found it should be an easy install. I’d read on some subreddits and seen some YouTube videos about how excellent EndeavourOS was. So I downloaded the ISO and did the install. So glad it worked on the old MacMini. And in my view, EndeavourOS is the best of the so-called Arch-based distros. It’s more than that, really. It IS Arch, but with many useful EOS specific tools to help you out. Plus, an awesome forum with a welcoming, inviting, vibrant, and active community. Not to mention A dedicated dev team who are approachable and active on the forum. What’s not to love about EndeavourOS?

Now, since my new laptop is good and ready… I’ll be installing Arch as they’ve just released a new ISO. Daily driver for the desktop macMini will remain EOS. Laptop daily driver will be Arch.

All this distro-hopping over the years and one thing is clear; It’s Arch… It’s always been Arch. I just didn’t really know it until recently.


everyone cuts there teeth on debian/ubu but I never cared for their way of doing things.

I get this. It really took Endeavour creator (Mr. Bryan I believe) to make me love it.

this ^^^. I tried Arch vanilla. So much intimidation built into it via ‘they say.’ I could install it as a noob no problem but I didn’t get it and moved on.

All Debs/Ubus are variations of a theme.
All Fedoras/knockoffs a variation of a theme.
But Arch ‘based-ons’ are insane. Garuda is a Vegas 4am nightmare and I had it installed for about half an hour and does not resemble Arch. Manjaro I was confused with and I could not connect it to Arch. Arco, Artix were miles apart but snappy. GNU Linux Libre didn’t seem like an Arch distro either.

It wasn’t til Endeavour that I ‘got it’ and glad I found it. I didn’t know what Arch was about til this one.
Thanks for sharing your arch endeavour journey. I’m willing to bet they all end with an epiphany :slight_smile:


Same. As for Fedora, dnf seemed OK, but I just never felt at home with Fedora.

We differ here. I did “get it.” And I still love vanilla Arch. That’s the great thing about Linux. There’s always something for everyone.

100% agree.

Yup, I think Garuda is a mess. As for Manjaro, I dug it while I was using it. I consider it the Ubuntu of the Arch world.

As I said above, I did get it. But Endeavour is the icing on the Arch cake as far as I’m concerned. Glad I found it as well!


FWIW I believe there is a little known gem in the Debian world called Lilidog (LD). The community is tiny, the dev is amazing (sleekmason). Heck, they even offer a full setup of sowm, dkwm on their openbox base. It is 100% debian repo compatible and for those of us who prefer to run debian unstable or testing, it is a tiny tweak that mirrors the debian tweak to make that happen.

My read is that EOS & LD are the two best distros. Everything on them just works fine, like it should. :wink: I’ll stop effusing now…


I agree with everything you say, except this :point_up::point_up::point_up:. For some reason, my brain could never make sense of dnf. I also had similar problems with Zypper. Maybe I’m too dense, but it never worked for me either.

I’ve never visited the Garuda forums. And yes, The Arch forums, while active, are full of snobs who seem to be there for the sole purpose of being rude and holier-than-thou.

Didn’t waste your time. It’s much better here at the EOS forum.


I love the Garuda forum! I have always found the community very welcoming and good-natured. There is very little tolerance for help vampires, but it is a small team and not many forum helpers so I think that’s fair.

Users who actually make an effort get help there.

The default theme on the KDE spin is pretty intense. Not my cup of tea either (I use Sway). Although, if a user cannot manage to change the default theme on their own, then perhaps an Arch-based distro is not a good fit anyhow. :wink:


I can confirm that 100%. :grin:


"We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the Garuda began to take hold. I remember saying something like: “I feel a bit lightheaded. Maybe you should drive…” Suddenly there was a terrible roar all around us and the sky was full of what looked like huge pulsing Candy icons and fonts, all swooping and screeching and strobing and diving around the desktop… and a voice was screaming: Holy Jesus! What are these goddamn animals? I screamed at my attorney "type yay –S napalm you drunken fool” but the Garuda was getting more intense for him as the Praga Khan-neon show of the desktop was causing him to swat the air violently. By then then our Red Shark was aimed at a muddy ravine and the roar of bats got louder as our wheels left the road.”

So no, the option to change themes really wasn’t there on my first spin…I don’t blame myself :slight_smile:



Oh my, sorry to hear, things have changed there in the last 15 years. Debian Forums has always been like that.

I found the Arch forums to be very helpful to the people who try to solve the problems themselves and give the proper info of what they tried with logs. If you going there to ask for help without trying, then your responses may not be very favorable.


I think that might hold true for many of the Forums where people dislike having their time wasted doing work for others… :wink:


also @sammiev
I think technical questions where one can post a question then say “I tried M, I tried N and O, but that stuff didn’t work etc:” would be so much easier for the person trying to help because they can see what you’ve included/eliminated and may be able to send you in the right direction. Or at least explain how you tried to understand the literature (wiki, search function.) and failed.
I never want to come to ask a question empty-handed, and if I got absolutely nothing, I will be honest about it.

My theory is the more you try to help yourself before asking, the less chance someone will steer you to man or wiki page in their immediate reply :grinning:


My theory is the more you try to help yourself before asking, the less chance somone will steer you to man or wiki page in their immediate reply :grinning:

This is huge. I’ve been able to solve so many problems by just experimenting/searching around first.

For a newer person, though, Endeavour’s forum seems really patient and mindful. I’d put it up there with Debian + Mint’s.

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All true…and with a very wicked humor streak that makes it unique and matches my own :face_with_spiral_eyes:


I’m rattling on just in case there are more new people reading. you have a luckier strategy than me. Mostly I just fail. But if I’m in too deep I always understand the root of the problem if I’m reading at some smartypants place like stackexchange…problem is all solutions are not only distro-specific but DE-specific as well.
Or use ‘search’ function to find Solved posts only to find your circumstances are different or the info is 5 years old.
THe thing that sets this place apart is it might have more geniuses than stack or anywhere else I’ve been…most complicated questions are solved almost immediately here.
I’m over a year into Endeavor and I still dig it strongly. I would not be a year + into it without the help of this joint that is for sure.

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Well, reading the open post I found myself a little too, since I started using Linux. Only that I’ve been using it for a very short time, almost a year. And obviously I did a lot of distro-hopping, in addition to the common mistakes that a user outside of Linux can run into (using Linux as if it were Windows, or choosing a distro because of its desktop environment and so on). Obviously I also relate to EOS and its community. Other communities are not so friendly towards the novice (which is not so obvious, believe me, I have seen it personally, obviously not here but elsewhere).

Obviously much more recently I also had Arch on the PC, but now I limit myself to having EOS and W11 on the PC. I find EOS more comfortable to use than Arch.

Of course I’m still learning and making mistakes, like destroying an ssd trying to install arch. XD