GREAT Performance of Manjaro Mate on RPI A400

I’m not new to Linux with daily use since mid 90s, or other OSes: MacOS, Win 95 thru 10, RedHat, Suse, Novell, Mint, Sun, AIX, HP, IBM mainframe 360 thru Sys P&X.

Just wanted to say how impressed I am with performance of current distribution pkg for RPI4, Mate 21.12.

For me, as a document workstation for limited browsing/research, it just runs rings around Raspbian - surprisingly very responsive; doesnt have SNAP issues like Ubuntu, not bogged down in device support changes ala Buster to Bullseye transition. Supports the software I like/need and looks glorious on Pi.

(I thought i’d have to use 32-bit software to get this speed!)
A great job, Ray Sherwin & team!
George

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Just wanted to say how impressed I am with performance of current distribution pkg for RPI4, Mate 21.12.

Wholeheartedly agree. Over the last year, my main computer has been an RPI4 8GB, using Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS, Raspi OS Lite with MATE desktop, and now Manjaro MATE. Manjaro is certainly a more polished distro and seems more responsive than the other distros in most cases.

I have added two tweaks to fstab to reduce unnecessary (in my opinion) disk writes, which could be helpful in particular if an SD is the system disk. They are:

  1. Adding noatime to prevent accessed files being updated with the time of access

PARTUUID=XXXXXXXX-02 / ext4 defaults,noatime 0 1

  1. Writing files in .cache to RAM, instead of to the disk. Chromium, in particular, makes significance use of .cache

tmpfs /home/XXX/.cache tmpfs noatime,nodev,nosuid,size=600M 0 0

I have found one issue, using very large spreadsheets with libreOffice-calc. It takes one or two seconds to move the cursor from one cell to the next, making it quite unusable.
The solution was to run libreoffice-calc as follows:

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gen libreoffice

I found this on an Ubuntu forum.
In this way the performance is excellent, though the user interface looks like Windows c.1995. I suppose it sounds better if I call it “retro”.
I would love any suggestions on how to improve the “look” without reducing performance.

Try one of the following and see which is best for you:

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=kde4 libreoffice

Or

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk libreoffice

Or

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk3 libreoffice

Suggestion grabbed from: Menu appearance is hard on the eyes - #2 by mark_t - English - Ask LibreOffice

Apparantly more information can be found at LibreOffice - ArchWiki

Hope this helps!

Thank you for your insights, JonG, will pursue these performance observations.
I’m sure the spreadsheet tip will effect my usage soon, Tho finding OnlyOffice a good alternative so far. Using Brave browser so expect the Chromium caching tip will apply, and file access time I normally disable.
Much appreciate your info & will let you know of any observations from my less-robust usage.
For daily work & development using Manjaro KDE Plasma which also very happy with.
Best Wishes

Hi,

Thanks for your feedback, nice present for the dev team :-)
I like with Manjaro the build yourself OS possibility for the x86 and arm devices

Try one of the following and see which is best for you:

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=kde4 libreoffice

Or

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk libreoffice

Or

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk3 libreoffice

Thank you for this. I tried these and another option in the wiki, and all the options except for “gen” are problematic. It’s only a guess, but it seems that, except for the “gen” option, a whole column or maybe more is being recalculated every time the cursor is moved from one cell to the next, even when no change is made to the cell contents. As one of my spreadsheets has over 700 rows, that causes a significant delay.

I have found that the following terminal command does produce a reasonble user interface for libreoffice, while not impacting the performance:

SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=qt5 libreoffice

As described in the Archwiki page for libreoffice, I made this change permanent by editing the file

/etc/profile.d/libreoffice-fresh.sh

by removing the comment from the relevant line.

This has caused one minor issue. After every use of libreoffice, the following error appears in the system log:

qt.xkb.compose: failed to create compose table

From a few searches, it appears that this message is related to use of the “compose” key, which I cannot remember ever using, so it does not concern me.

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