[SOLVED] EndeavourOS - My First Impressions and Some Suggestions

Beginning several days ago, I have installed EndeavourOS onto two older, no-longer-currently-active, computers: a ZaReason Strata 7330 with an Intel i7 processor and another ZaReason Strata 7330, this one with an Intel i5 processor. Both were purchased in 2012 and I now use them strictly for experimentation and learning purposes.

The installation process onto these two computers was the fastest I have ever seen with any GNU/Linux distribution. That is probably because there is little ‘bloatware’ included.

For what is essentially a Version 1.0, this system is superb. Period!

As no operating system is ‘perfect’ however, I do have a few suggestions:

On the Live Disc I believe that GParted should be made to be easily found on the Live Disc Desktop and, on the EndeavourOS download page (or even somewhere on the Live Disc), prospective users should be made aware of the necessity of ‘wiping’ all previous partitions. This assumes that the user wishes to use the whole disc for EndeavourOS and had some previous system installed on their computer.

I tried doing one of the installations without running GParted just to see what would happen and, of course, as with Antergos, the installation failed. (The previous system was in fact Antergos.) After I used GParted and ‘wiped’ the disc, the installation went perfectly and speedily.

I do not know what those who wish to dual-boot need to do; that is something that should be discussed further by people who are knowledgeable about it.

Another suggestion I must make is that the ‘Tap-to-Click’ option (for notebook trackpads) should be activated by default. Not having this work by default might be a deal-breaker for some people who are unaware of how to activate it. At the very least it might be confusing. (Most distros, in my experience, do have the ‘Tap-to-Click’ option activated on their installation disc.) As this option, when activated on the Live Disc, does not follow to the final installation, it should be made standard all the way.

I am happy to see that a minimal number of programs are installed onto the hard drive once the installation is complete but there are three which I believe should be made standard: pamac (preferably pamac-aur), xorg-xkill, and BleachBit.

Pamac (or Octopi for those who like that) is the easiest way I know of to find new programs that you may want to install. (I only rarely install via Pamac however; I just get the actual name of the program and then install via yay.) But, especially for new Linux users, something like this is essential for finding and installing programs that an individual user may want or need.

The xkill command, though probably not often used, is essential in certain circumstances. I myself do use it from time to time.

BleachBit is, for me, also an essential program (governments and websites may not like this program but that’s too bad for them!). (I have found only one GNU/Linux distribution that makes BleachBit standard - SparkyLinux, though there may be others - and I cannot understand why more distros do not.)

All of the above is MY opinion(s) only and I want to congratulate the developers on producing this excellent GNU/Linux operating system.

I also want to compliment the developers on the Calamares installer. Again, in my opinion, it is just great! As I use exclusively the Xfce Desktop Environment (I have been using it for the last four or five years), I am satisfied with the way the installed system currently is. I can appreciate, however, that many people would rather use a different DE and I hope that the installer can be updated to accommodate those people.

My wife and I currently have six (6) computers in active use running Antergos. (Four of them are new model ZaReaons, one is an Alienware AW-17R3, and the last one is an Asus Rogstrix.) (An additional new ZaReason MediaBox runs Manjaro; I plan to leave that one alone as it is working fine and serves well for the purposes for which I use it.) Over the next few weeks, I plan to change all of the Antergos computers to EndeavourOS. (I’ll have to do this slowly as I want to configure the computers to work and, most importantly, to look exactly as they do now with Antergos [along with its other advantages, this is very easy to do with the Xfce DE]; among other things, my wife does not like ‘change.’)

I hope that EndeavourOS achieves the success and popularity it deserves.

Thank you to everyone who has read this and I’d be interested in hearing what others think of my suggestions, pro or con.

Again I congratulate the developers for a job very well done!

Lawrence

P.S. There is one other thing I should mention though most users already know about it: the option to Autologin (offered in the installer) does not work. While that is not truly important, it ought to be fixed or, if it cannot be fixed, it should be removed as an option. That’s what I think anyway.

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My understanding is this is related to the inclusion of lightDM and not SDDM. (Or perhaps is a “bug” in the Calamares installer?)

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A “full-fledged” installer is planned, as described by the Bryan.

Working on the (net)installer it is certainly not an easy challenge, but the EOS team will handle it. Do not require from devs that from the start of work on the new OS, after such a lightning time, a ready installer is thrown into the ISO. So, be patient…
@fernandomaroto recently also mentioned about this problem.

Six machines with Antergos on the board, great:-j

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https://www.bleachbit.org/
we could make a voting on this, but only installing it by default will not do anything :wink:

pamac: we will not install it by default, but we could put it to a community repository if there will be a maintainer for this, a user or one of the developers with the time and willing to keep it up to date and do Bug tracking on it.

More Desktops to install: we are in the making and it will be there asap!

calamares autologin --> indeed it should be removed we are only still not find how to do this, and in my opinion autologin is useless on most DE’s as it is needed to unlock your key later with typing a password also…

xkill command i can not remember when i do use this last time… but yes we can add this [done]

tap-to-click: commit/cc85f4a178a4bf3c9c8b0fb0e87698b2a0f095fa

GParted: we have a pre-install launcher (already on first stable release) with preinstall info and launchers for gparted and the installer …

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Just to be clear to everyone @joekamprad isn’t talking about the endeavour repo, he’s talking about a repo maintained by a community member. The reason we don’t ship it, is because of the extra work it brings with.

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We can also review eventually a unofficial Arch based repo that does packaging aur packaging. that including pamac. Can always make a wiki out of it.

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I personally prefer to go as high upstream as possible while getting packages. Hence git first, Arch repo, AUR and so on.

Another human factor ads delay.

Edge till it bleeds. :wink:

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Thanks for considering my suggestions and, especially, for implementing adding xorg-xkill as standard and most especially for activating ‘tap-to-click’ by default.

Obviously it is easy for some more experienced users to do this (and add programs such as pamac-aur) by oneself but I was thinking more along the lines of newer users (either to Linux or just to Arch) who might have difficulties with the distro fresh out of the box.

I still think that pamac (pamac-aur) or something similar (like Octopi) should be made standard or, at least, some instructions on the web site as to how to install it (and what it does) should be prominently available. How else can new users find programs that they might want? (Google is not really an option.)

Once fully implemented, I found Antergos to be just about the easiest distro to work with that I have ever used in 11+ years of using GNU/Linux distros and I expect that EndeavourOS will be just as easy and stable. (That is my impression after installing it on my two ‘test’ computers.) This would make EndeavouroS an almost ideal distro for someone just migrating from Windows or Mac and also for people like me who just want the computer to work and not get in the way of what I am doing with it.

Again I thank the developers for an excellent job, and for doing all of it in record time!

Lawrence

I have used BleachBit for years. It adds a major level of security to a computer. It also minimizes or even eliminates most annoying advertisements (due to getting rid of cookies, etc.). It can also clear any passwords entered which is also a big (in my opinion) security ‘plus.’ That’s why I stated that “governments and websites [and companies] may not like this program but that’s too bad for them!”

Of course it may not be a totally necessary program for many people but I think that if people realized just how powerful it is (and what it does), many more people would use it. I discovered it a few years ago and now my wife and I would not have a computer which did not have this program.

That’s the reason that I recommended that it be made standard. But, of course, as with all things concerning EndeavourOS, to include it or not is strictly up to you.

Thank you for considering this suggestion anyway.

Lawrence

It is strictly up to all here at EndeavourOS community we do not seperate development from community!

I agree that the autologin option is not really a necessity. I selected the option only for convenience on my ‘test’ computers. That’s how I discovered that it does not work.

That’s okay - I never use autologin on any actual ‘in-use’ computers; my wife and I even use a UEFI/BIOS password (we activate both an Administrator password and a User password and one or the other must be entered when we turn on our computers).

So, in my opinion, if the autologin option is removed from the installer, that is no great loss. As a matter of fact, it may be a ‘plus.’

Lawrence

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I’m fine with it as long as it becomes an option in the installer and not some repo with a bunch of packages like what Antergos had that is forced on everyone.
My biggest reason for that is that Arch needs to be updated often and partial updates are not supported. That means that you very quickly get a problem with outdated/broken packages and they need to be fixed fast. Antergos had it’s issues in that regard as it sometimes took way too long to fix stuff.

I do not agree with the “…almost ideal distro for someone just migrating from Windows or Mac…”. I honestly do not think a beginner who comes straight from those systems should be running this distro unless they really want to learn and know what they’re getting into. A package manager won’t help you update config/mirrorlist files etc. You still need to do some manual work now and then and you will have to get into that terminal at some point no matter what so get them in there ASAP and get it over with.

A welcome screen type thing giving a few examples of what you can install if you want it should be enough imo.

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We’re not aiming at Linux noobs with this distro, for that group, there’s a variety of distros out there and on the Arch-based distros, Manjaro and RebornOS are doing a great job for them. We are aiming at people who are distro-hopping for years and people who are looking for a fast and easy Arch install. This group of people have a certain extent of knowledge what Linux is about and we’re offering users the opportunity to extend their knowledge on Linux.
If you’ve seen or heard the media reviews on us, then one opinion really sticks out: We’ve got raving reviews for the fact that we’re so close to Arch and some of them even called us unique in comparison with other Arch-based distros.
This is the vision we always had in our mind for EndeavourOS and it turns out to be working well.
Yesterday’s post explains our vision and I’m going to bring this message even further out to the media, we took another road than Antergos and now the difference between RebornOS and EndeavourOS is very clear. This was always the goal, so I do appreciate your review and suggestions, but it’s not going to be the road that EndeavourOS is going to take.
The terminal combined with the knowledge the community has is the heart of this distro.

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I do thank you for the consideration you have given to my ideas and I’m glad that you have implemented the ‘tap-to-click’ feature as well as adding as a default xorg-xkill.

I do have one other request: I can appreciate that you want to make the distro ‘Terminal-centric’, as it were, and I myself use the Terminal as often as possible (almost always for updating and adding new programs).

There is one thing that I do not know how to do in the Terminal and that is to upgrade only some of the programs that are shown to be needing updating (when there is a problem with one or more of them but there is no problem with others). If for some reason you are told that a problem exists with an updating program, it is easy to cancel the update in the Terminal and open pamac-aur and uncheck the offending program but I know of no way to do this in the Terminal.

Is there a way? If so, can someone tell me how to do it? And if there is not, can a way be added?

Thanks again for writing to me.

Lawrence

pacman -S will install the latest version of that package
You can just CTRL + C when it shows the list and install whatever package you want.

The reason there are no commands for it is that it’s not supported on Arch.

Edit: I got that completely backwards… Too hot these days :hot_face:

You mean to skip an update temporarily, you can it’s described in the last paragraph of this wiki article:

I think that Endeavour should stick to the original plan. You can’t keep adding things because someone wants you to include them so it makes it easy for them and they don’t have to deal with anything or for ease of use. All of this stuff can be installed by the user or figured out or explained or helped with. The reason i came to Antergos and now Endeavour is because i learned something everyday. It was refreshing, it was interesting, it was difficult sometimes when i didn’t understand or know how to do it. But, i enjoyed it. I learned something and learning means making mistakes and doing it again or doing it over, or fixing it. Asking questions, listening, trying. This is Linux…this is Arch. I don’t think Endeavour is being made Terminal centric. It’s more Arch centric. I think if people want pamac they can install it. I think the minimal packages included are all that anyone needs to start with. Endeavour is all about the journey!

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thats what we do, we never would add more packages to the installer itself, also as it is a matter of personal taste, adding a little usefull script like x-kill is something usefull, also to have on the ISO to use as a rescue system.

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I would like to thank the devs for taking on the monster effort to pick up where Antergos left off and create the EndeavorOS distro. Your efforts are most welcome. I did want to provide some input on what your target individual is for this distro, as that might inform some of your choices. You have mentioned that you are not targeting Linux nubes, but distro-hoppers and others that would like to try Arch but need some help doing so. I found myself in that same group when I discovered Antergos, just a few weeks before it discontinued support. My reason for trying Antergos was because I had long been interested in Arch but didn’t have the time (or interest) to study and learn it before trying it. I wanted to try first, see if it was really all it was cracked up to be, and then spend the time learning after I decided I was “all in”. So as my son (who majors in Computer Science) dithered about installing Arch from scratch as he was researching it, I grabbed Antergos and had it up and running in less than an hour. I learned a lot more using it (as did he) than I would have spent combing through the wiki and the forums. So the point is, having an easy install, with a helpful forum and a relatively easy and intuitive way to play around with the system was essential to capturing me (and my son) as new Arch-based distro users. So if EndeavorOS is after that same demographic (newcomers to Arch, switchers from Debian/Fedora linux flavors, etc), which seems to be close to the vision you have published, then the distro as it exists today is almost there but not quite in my analysis. What do switchers to Arch want: An easier install - check for EndeavorOS; a helpful community - another Endeavor strength; and finally the ability to play around with the OS a little to see if it is for them before investing the time and effort to become an Arch master. This is where I think the distro is still somewhat lacking.
Since you are going with a minimal install (which I wholeheartedly support), the ability to kick the tires of EndeavorOS is somewhat limited, as there is very little included in a baseline install. Hence I would recommend, as some others have, that a GUI type package manager be included in the baseline install, something like pamac or octopi. Both are much easier for an Arch newbie to fiddle around with, install some of their favorite programs, and kick the tires of their new OS to see if they want to stick around for a while. I get that the devs want to encourage learning the Arch Way with the terminal, but with such a lean initial install, having a way to easily and intuitively install software, and more importantly, to discover software (for the Arch newbie who doesn’t know what he doesn’t know) is essential to grabbing converts. After getting hooked, he/she will inevitably end up using the command line in no time as I did - but a GUI package manager is essential to getting them hooked. I understand the time limits by the heroic devs, and I agree with the minimalist philosophy of the community (please don’t install and office suite, video editor, etc) but it seems as if the addition of a GUI package manager would be very helpful in fulfilling the mission of EndeavorOS, while still maintaining the essential vibe of the distro and the community.

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Hi,
first of all welcome to the forum and the community.
I really understand your point of view in terms of the first initial feel of EndeavourOS. The current team are all former Antergos moderators and our experience is that the majority of Antergos users kept relying on Pamac.
When a Pamac update was bugged (and that happens more often than you like) a lot of people didn’t know what to do, or when an update needs manual intervention, they also were lost in translation.

We’re not providing a full vanilla-Arch experience, your install is shipped with a terminal-based AUR helper Yay by default, to make the experience somewhat more convenient.

After the very first boot, a welcome box is popping up that directs you to the website and wiki. We are aware now that most users click that box away, without actually reading what its feature actually means. We are going to create a menu that makes it more obvious to see what the features of EndeavourOS are.

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