How to Install Manjaro on an empty BRTFS (or to be) partition with an existing /home directory and existing GRUB?

  1. I have used Linux … for ever. (Last century) and couldn’t install it successfully along Fedora
  2. Calamares (Vulcan for Manjaro) Installer works fine on an empty disk, nothing I tried worked according to #1 : GRUB issue
  3. How could I install Manjaro from a USB Thumb drive, on an empty partition, ideally BTRFS and using an existing /home directory (and a new user there).

I had no issue installing on a "blank’ SSD, but was unable to boot Manjaro on a existing Fedora System.

  • Calamares is a great idea, but as of and for Manjaro 23.1…1 it is still a work in progress.
    The options are confusing, and some useful ones are simply not available.
    Need to have simpler option for existing boot loader install or simply update and existing one.

  • “Manual partitioning” menu does not allow a simpler install. Even Crude Fedora “Anaconda” is more functional.

  • Ideally it would support BTRFS subvolumes too. (and options like compression, Encryption etc…)

  • A Usual step by step procedure, to achieve what is requested here would be just great !

  • It is very likely, that a manual install, with a well documented proper procedure, possibly requiring minor modification of Calamares-Vulcan would allow installing Manjaro along an other distro. If some good soul, has the interest and patience to take this task, it would be a lot more constructive than the RTF from the “basic courtesy & wisdom challenged”. Kudos in advance for the brave who may step up to this plate. :innocent:

Thanks for the attention

You choose manual partitioning and set the mountpoint to /home

It does, mount them as @subvolume. F.ex a home subvol would be mounted as @home

No, that is not what this forum is for.

So other than that just a rant?

I guess you have to take all of that up with the developers of Calamares then.

Calamares in a universal installer framework created for many Linux distributions.
See About Calamares. Cheers.

Yes, I am aware of this.
But is Calamares on Debian (for example) is properly configured, Calamares for Manjaro obviously is a work in progress, to allow more than a basic install.
By “more” I just mean add Manjaro on an existing Linux (at least the top Distros) system:

  1. preserving /home (add a user who can be “Administrator”)
  2. installing Manjaro on an empty partition
  3. Ideally allow this partition to b e formatted as desired (ext4, BTRFS, XFS and perhaps more)
  4. Allowing BTRFS Subvolumes
  5. Allowing BTRFS compression
  6. Allowing to add mounting on another Linux partition (creates appropriate /etc/fstab)

Thanks for the attention.

How to install Majaro

What is Majaro and why are you telling how to install it? :thinking:

This is a support forum, not a search engine. You’re asking a question to find out how to do something, not searching for a How To article. Right? :wink:

Please edit your topic title to be more clear and concise with proper punctuation. Both your topic title and first post have spelling errors.

Please see:

All of these are possible (not sure about the compression, but that is just a mount option and IIRC that is possible to add)

Here is another guy that had a bit trouble understanding it: Reinstall Manjaro with Calamares / GUI, keeping /home, cleaning /boot/efi and /

I have no experience with BTRFS. However, as far as I’m aware, most of this is achievable using the Manual Partitioning method during Manjaro installation. At least, it is with the official Manjaro distributions.

In another thread, you mentioned that you use Manjaro MATE, one of the Community editions; I don’t know how complete Calamares might be on that.

I have tried to install Manjaro, wirth the latest XFCE : same GRUB problem, would not even boot.
What I tried to do works just fine with other distros, like OpenSuse, Fedora. (perhaps Ubuntu?)
So right or wrong my feeling is that the Vulcan Version of Calamares for Manjaro, needs quite a bit more work : such a great distro deserves a better installer.

I have use GRUB 1 and 2 for ever: GRUB2 is not so simple, and just too many ways to install it, update it etc…
About same comment for efimgr, useful … when it works. (Works OK on Manjaro)

BTRFS is not simple, but it is now very reliable, great performance, has great belts and whistles… and in my view is still poorly documented. It is still continuously enhanced : great job.
Neither GPARTED, nor gnome-disks has kept up with BTRFS … yet.

I agree. Except I found it super easy to install, I just made sure to have all the information before I installed.

I also found Manjaro “super ueasy to install” on a machine where the disk could be formatted and the default install.

Too install it along Fedora, or probably others distros) made obvious shortcomings I have not seen in Fedora (and derivatives) or OpenSuse… and more !
No one likes to work on “installers” this is why great installers, usually comme last.
Grub2 is not a piece of cake, but LILO was not one either !
I guess it will take time for Manjaro to have a better GUI installer or some smart dedicated volunteer?
Calamares seems a reasonably OK (perhaps great) framework, it is not bad (not perfect yet) on the new Debian.

Thread moved from Support to Feedback as it’s all feedback with no support queries. However, this is bordering on an unconstructive complaint thread and may be closed.

Please review the forum rules again, specifically: Ineffective Discussion (“Bikeshed”)

As others have said, Calamares is not developed by Manjaro. Please check upstream issues and see if there is something related to your concerns. If not, feel free to create a new issue.

I have never formatted any disk. I partition my disk and calamares formats the partitions for me.
I share my disk with Windows. btrfs with subvolumes on the same disk. Zero problems.
But I made my research before installing, separate boot partition was one.

My guess is you have MBR bios or share boot partition or something similar.
But this is no longer a support thread and it sounds like you are not really interested in solving anything.


is untrue, at least for gparted, you can create/resize btrfs, witch I think is what calamares is using.

You find good Information about Btrfs in the wiki

and in

Since the btrfs master is in the thread → @andreas85
Do you know about the compression? Is there a way to set f.ex compress=zstd:10 as mount option when setting up the partitions in calamares?

Found this thread but the answer is “I don’t know if it is possible directly in calamares”. How to install manjaro with BTRFS file system, with zstd (2) compression in Calamares for UEFI?

I really do not know for sure

But if i remember right, once when i installed (the last time) there was a field shown. For btrfs to give mount- options (inside calamares) where it would be possible to enable compression.

But when using manjaro (as a rolling release), even if you enable compression after your first boot, it will take place over time. After a year, most of your files will be compressed.