Some questions from an Ubuntu user

Hello people,
I don’t know if I am at the right place in the “Non-technical question”, but I will try anyway. I have some minor questions asking in a bit of fear before doing something stupid.

I have used Ubuntu for 10 years (I love Gnome!), but I want to change from it. I got Manjaro as a recommendation very often and I have tried it in a virtual box. I seem to like it a lot.

I am a programmer and I know how to compile programmes, however, I love to have a stable system which isn’t bothering me at all with weird bugs and fixing due to problems happening after updates.

So even though I like Manjaro, I am still unsure if this is the right system, because I am a bit in fear of the rolling updates destroying anything when I need it.
I am not interested in debugging my computer to make graphic cards work again or stuff like that :slight_smile:

So I tried Arch and didn’t like it because one needs to configure every single thing, but it seems like Manjaro is a nice trade off?

I have of course read a lot of articles about that, but I somehow didn’t make up my mind on that.

Any opinions?

How stable are your systems? Do you use a lot of time fixing stuff?

My main purpose of using my computer is actually programming and gaming (yes, I play on Linux, but it worked fine with Steam and Ubuntu). I used btrfs on Ubuntu. I love Gnome. (which looks even better on Manjaro than on Ubuntu)

Many thanks for any answer! :slight_smile:

I’m not a Linux super user. Very, very rarely do I have issues come up that cause a serious issue. They’re almost always my fault for trying to tweak something that was working fine before.

The community forum is a great resource for getting help. If I can’t find the issue already, people have been willing to help me.

The slower releases from Arch give us a pretty good buffer from system breaking problems. Just check the forum post for big new releases to see if there are any issues before you update.


Hey, @DORpave ! Welcome to the forum.

I’ve been off of Manjaro for a year or so, but am about to come back here, I think (hence why I’m here replying to you).

I’m a very non technical Linux user (and I’ve been using Linux exclusively since about 2017 or so). I can barely get by in terminal and need quite the hand holding. Needless to say, I couldn’t fix a problem on my own hardly if my life depended on it, though, of course, I’ve gotten okay at snooping the internet these days and finding solutions when need be.

To answer your question, though, I used Manjaro for almost an entire year with no major issues. Any time I ever seemed to have issues, it’s when I got in over my head and got a bit too ambitious with the AUR or something to that effect. The OS seemed very stable generally speaking so long as I wasn’t testing my limits and getting a bit zealous with add ons and stuff in AUR.

I guess what I’m saying is, if I managed to get by in Manjaro for so long with no major issues, I’m sure a programmer as yourself and with so many years of Linux experience will be fine.

I’ve mostly been on Gnome Ubuntu or Linux Mint Cinnamon if it’s relevant to you.

I’m sure with it being a rolling release, it will of course be more prone to issues relatively speaking, but I never seemed to experience it myself.

I’ve heard that Manjaro a long time ago had more stability issues, but it seems that they’re just old stories at this point in time. I DO feel like Manjaro is more “cutting edge” as they say, Arch was “bleeding edge” (meaning to expect to do some troubleshooting), and Ubuntu/Mint was more “stable.” Regardless, I think there’s “possibly” a tiny stability sacrifice there, but things like the AUR add SOOO much upside, you know? It’s something that once you get used to it, it’s kinda hard to leave it.

Take care, and I hope this helps you with your decision.


If you use btrfs you don’t need to be afraid of updates.

  • use btrfs (with 2 devices and RAID10)
  • use snapper (or timeshift) so you can rollback in a short time (15 min ? )
  • make backups on an extern media
  • Choose a stable DE
    • XFCE is the most stable
    • I keep hearing complaints about KDE after an update
  • Not much tinkering (but with btrfs and snapper you can undo everything in minutes)
  • Install 2 kernels
  • Have an live manjaro USB stick handy (just in case. This makes maintenance really easy)
  • Make your updates after reading the update-thread. But don’t procrastinate.

I program with my PC (XFCE, btrfs, RAID10, snapper, dual-seat). I’ve had to rollback twice in what I believe was 5 years or more.

And you will have a lot of fun with manjaro :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


just like you I recently migrated from ubuntu to manjaro based on recommendations so I’m here to share my experience with you.
first of you should know you are going to struggle to install various apps learn about AUR and understand the difference between pacman and apt in general. installing different packages is not easy as ubuntu even if you use the ''Add/Remove Software".
after getting along based on your device you might find some driver issues, for example, I had a problem with the audio card. you might have it with graphics since you play games.

but I’m a debugging junkie and I love to solve such problems. here is what I did to maintain a stable operating system that won’t get out of hand during working or programming.
I create a bash script for every solution to every problem and comment on whatever I need to know about it. just like a little forum for my own problems. this helps me get over problems and build my current setup from the ground up in no time(if reinstalling is required).

Generally, I’m glad that I have switched. and I think int would be at least a good opportunity to learn about manjaro and Arch.

Thank you for comment. The quoted part directly scares me again in a way I don’t want to try it😁 I don’t want to set up Raid or two kernels😁
But otherwise, it doesn’t sound to bad. Thank you for reminding me of timeshift, I actually use that on btrfs as well and saved my system with it once.

Thanks to everybody so far for answering.

While cynical13 and MyDaisyBates directly calmed me down, andreas85 and Matinanjaro directly scared me again and reminded me why I actually ask myself if I need Manjaro

But together with btrfs and timeshift, I might give it a ago😅

1 Like

That’s the spirit. forgive me if I scared you. you will love the journey.

I usually don’t have any issues, but sometimes it happens mostly on unstable branch, my main coding laptop runs stable branch, I dont have any OS backup system, I only backup my work, you only need a kernel LTS is better, for visual Studio Code I use snap format, as the repos package is missing functionality and it break a few times, that does not mean that all the repos software suffers from those issues.

I fallow some simple rules, do not update before a presentation, do not update when you need to do critical work, just in case something happens, as I also don’t want to debug OS issues when I am working, and most importantly don’t do modifications in the vannila system as in (monkey patching) as most do.

No one can decide for you, you have to use it a few months and decide if is the right tool for your use case.

And you might have issues with nvidia cards when drivers are updated, but if you use open source driver you should be ok here, amd or intel there is no issues.


RAID10 is easy with btrfs (not like it used to be )

This is not needed. But it gives additional safety.

  • Just do a sudo btrfs add device ..., and you are in RAID-mode

You can find good Information about Btrfs in the wiki

2 kernels are easy to use with Manjaro.

This is not needed. But it gives additional safety.
You can easily switch kernels from one boot to another.

  • Just do a sudo mhwd-kernel -i linux61 and you have added a LTS kernel to your system

Please install 2 kernels (one of them LTS)

Haha, my no RAID was actually just because I only have one internal disk and don’t want to change my hardware setup.
But thank you for the link about the duo-kernel, I will have a look for that, maybe thats a think to actually consider.

Thank you for your help :slight_smile:

Arch has two wikis that might help going forward:

Do some reading at distowatch.

I also got started with Manjaro on a VM. Go though the update process: read the announcement (at least the first post), change your mirror-pool, refresh your local repository, update. Try pacman. Try pamac. Make sure your current tools and procedures work. Learn to ask good questions, including using the discourse forum software, and ask them :slight_smile:

If you are set on a rolling release, and like a reasonable configured base system that still empowers the user, Manjaro will deliver at this time. I’ve been using Manjaro for a couple of years. Historically, the stable-updates have been coming once a month. There is no set schedule (so set your own) and you NEED to stay current.

The other must resource is reading at least the Stable Update via this forum or rss:

I think it comes down to the development enviornment you require and your specific hardware.

I moved from a fixed release distro running sysVinit/Upstart and KDE4 to Manjaro systemd and Xfce. Technically, knock-on-wood, we have had no issues, after the initital install and our own customizations.

The Manjaro Team and the folks on this forum have been very generous with their time and knowledge.


I have been using Manjaro unstable branch since 2016 (I have survived 2 instances of forum gone haywire) and I haven’t experienced any downtime that I did not cause myself.

I have written a couple of mini guides

That aside

  • keep your system simple
  • be picky about the filesystem you choose - stability over features (btrfs e.g. requires regular maintenance)
  • be sure your custom theme
    • if any - is maintained especially when using KDE and Gnome

My current workstation


Indeed, if the development environment can be a separate environment/container/virtual/CI-CD managed solution the workstation/OS/DE etc you work on becomes a far less critical part of your work. if this is not possible then it is all about what kind of risk is acceptable.

Setting yourself up with a independent system/environment/solution that provides a stable development & workflow sound like a way to go to me. And to minimize risk to the workflow this solution should preferably depend on as less ’ stuff’ (eg a workstation) as possible. However I’m not a programmer/developer (do work with a few) and this is just me thinking a bit further then your actual question.

I’m on testing branch and Gnome edition, feels like stable to me.
But: No snap/flatpak and minimal AUR usage
Read the #announcements before updating and the links in the post above.

Hey people,
Thank you for your answers and the helpful links!

I do have two questions about that

  1. you are talking about different branches. Is it right that I am always on the stable one anyway if I downloaded Manjaro Gnome from here Manjaro Downloads and did not deliberately change anything about that?

Maybe saying “I am a developer” was a bit too much. I am a developer, but this is my private computer and I only do private python and java projects, so there is nothing requiring fancy extra stuff like specific C+±compilers etc.

  1. People keep talking about “read the announcements”. It might be a bit naive to ask this, but as it seems to me, all of the detailed announcements warning about specific things which can break are extremely useless if I don’t have an overview about the hundreds of packages I have installed?
    Isn’t it a much better approach to don’t care about the announcements, use btrfs+timeshift and backup regularly and just boot into yesterdays timeshift if an update goes wrong?

I have the weird feeling that it otherwise becomes a very intense work to foresee the one situation where something will go wrong

Anyway: I have installed Manjaro in a virtual box some days ago and played around with it, learned about the package manager (I installed trizen after some recommendations) and I think it looks nice.
I will give it a try

Thank you so much for all the helpful comments!:heart:


No (that is ignorant, but not safe) :sloth:

Read the update-thread !

  • Most things are explained in detail
  • Other things you can search in the forum
  • If you have to do something, the thread will say so clearly

Wait until the thread has posts from at least 1 day

A rollback will help short time. But you will have to update !
And you will have to face the problem then ! :scorpion:

1 Like

No, you don’t need to know every single package installed in the system. Read the announcement post about current known issues, or task to do for this specific update if you’re in XXX case, things like that.

No it is not a better approach to YOLO the updates, if in the end you have to restore system, look for what was wrong, try to fix it, and so on, you just waste time. Read the first two posts of the announcements, update the system. Simple as that. Now if you don’t modify your system from what a default system is, I guess you could just update the system and you should be good, it’s not like each update requires user intervention, but a rolling release does require maintenance anyway so… if your goal is to just use the system and forget about everything, a rolling release distribution is not the good choice as everything is rolling all the time, some application may need some attention at some point, that’s just how it is.

1 Like

That sounds about alright folks :slight_smile:
Thank you so much

Because it is the choosen format for the release notes.

I look at the announcement’s first 2 posts by philm, and then glance at what type of problems or questions folks might have and the poll. The second post contains “Known issues and solutions”. This isn’t meant to create anxiety, but rather gain knowledge. There is transparency. We can all be in the know and prevent potential problems on our systems. There aren’t a lot, sometimes none, and they may be very specific. Those few minutes, may save hours.

It is a very quick glance, but I

  • may have the same hardware, or
  • many people are experiencing the same issue, or
  • a particular package/program (system or application) may have been removed from the Manjaro’s repo, or
  • some action outside the normal package manager might be required, that sort of thing.

By us users reading the announcment, we are saving the Manjaro Team time :slight_smile: ,

This is no different than reading the archlinux front page news or linux mint’s install instructions or release notes. But it is a rolling release and is going to happen more often.

1 Like

It’s great to see I’m not the only one with the mentality that the OS should “get out of the way”.

I’ve been using Manjaro for a few years. It’s not perfect (you’ll need to fix things every once in a while), but the problems really crop up if you procrastinate with the updates. Otherwise, in my experience it’s more stable than Ubuntu and just about anything else I’ve tried in the linux space.