12.04 vs 13.04

Whats the difference between ubuntu 12.04 and 13.04. Is it worth the trouble of upgrading? And what are the features that changed/ got added. Thanks :3

The LTS releases are stable (as any issues found get fixed) I tend to think of the other (non-LTS) releases as more of a beta or unstable build. I only tend to upgrade away from an LTS (not to another LTS) if I find something that is buggy or if there is a particular feature I require (or I am testing code against it)

Ubuntu itself is inherently old - you run the system at least a month behind bleedig edge distros, and even farther downstream because of the extensive configuration and "testing" Canonical puts Ubuntu packages through. .DEB is just not worth using on the desktop - it isn't "modern" enough for desktop use. Use a distro that's closer upstream, like Fedora, Manjaro, Chakra, Sabayon, or even staight up Arch or Gentoo, not, as Zoltan said, "McDonalds" distros like Ubuntu, which are outdated by the time their "updated", especially the LTS releases of Ubuntu. The features added are nominal, because if any new things are on 13.04, they are already in the previously mentioned distros, and have been, for months.

Thanks for the quick responses. I guess I will begin to stop using Ubuntu because of what you had said. I did not know. Anyways, what are your top 3 free Linux distros? (Hopefully sorta similar to Ubuntu since I'm using the 13.04 on my laptop, and wanted It on my desktop)

Top 3? Well, that would have to be Arch, Gentoo, and Slackware. However, you might want to look into Manjaro, Antergos, Chakra (Arch-based), Sabayon (Gentoo-based), and Fedora - they have active communities, are very lightweight and powerful (Chakra is somewhat heavy from KDE), but are very well-made. All are bleeding edge (Fedora arguably the most), so they're way farther upstream, if not at the top in some cases (Fedora, I'm looking at you).

I just made the switch to Sabayon tonight I am liking what I see. It is very user friendly, bleeding edge and has tons of choice (both packages and and the way packages are handled) I recommend getting on the Wiki it is all very well explained with a dash of humor.

Fedora, Opensuse in tumbleweed, Chakra and Manjaro are good distros that are easy to use and are bleeding edge. If you really like to tinker Arch and Gentoo are the way to go.

Rolling release distros are little less stable but on a Desktop it really doesn't matter unless you love uptime counts. Plus they generally more secure due to having security patches early.  Plus who doesn't love new stuff?







If you still want a unity sort of environment just make sure to install GNOME 3.xx on whatever distro you choose. Unity is just a super customized version of GNOME for Ubuntu so you'll have relatively the same interface. Pretty much any distro has GNOME support since its one of the most used DE's around so don't worry about choosing a distro based on possible issue with running it. Lately I've tried Linux Mint, Manjaro, Sabayon, Fedora, Antergos, and a few others that I can't recall. Among those distros I've liked the communities of Manjaro and Fedora the most. Documentation is incredibly plentiful (Fedora because its been out for a very long time and is upstream of RHEL which is pretty prominent, and Manjaro because you can also use the Arch wiki for help in most cases which is very robust). I'd suggest trying Fedora out first (its the one I'm using right now). It's the distro I've had the least headaches with so far and like I said the community is pretty good.

13.04 is going to be end of life in a couple weeks. the current versions of Ubuntu are 12.04 and 13.10. 

Alright, thank you to everyone who has posted. What i'm gonna do is download fedora, Linux mint, and Manjaro. Im not gonna download arch Linux because I'm still a Linux noob and have no clue how to use the terminal, or other sorts of stuff like that. Thanks for all the feedback :3

That is not necessarily true; Fedora, for example, is a huge testing ground for pre-RedHat features and many features that are very experimental, and it is more than stable - it's even more stable than the *buntus. Arch, as well, which actually is downstream from Fedora in some respects, is incredibly stable. When a bleeding edge distro has a problem, be it a bug, security exploit, etc., they usually have zero day patches and information on how to properly fix the issue. Ubuntu, for example, might take months before the update is pushed to fix the security hole. Bleeding edge is not less stable, inherently.

The best way to learn linux is to start with the terminal, using the Beginner's guide on the Arch wiki will get you started and get you to know the way around your system fairly well, depending on graphical installers will save you time but will not help you to learn IMHO

Sometimes your posts make little sense (SOMETIMES!). But I can't help but like this very much:

Top 3? Well, that would have to be Arch, Gentoo, and Slackware.

(Though I would put them in a different order if that actually is the order you like them in)


Personally I don't see much benefit from using distro's that come with a whole lot of stuff installed. IMO you learn more and have a system better suited to you when you do it all yourself and figure out for yourself which software you want to use. Many people haven't tried or even know about any DE's/WM's outside of whatever their distro happened to ship in the release they installed :< Though that gets somewhat a moot point when virtual DE packages install most of that anyway in the minimalistic distro's (I have found just installing the DE doesn't always work the way I expect it to, certain settings or features seem to require some bloat).

So for slightly more advanced people and/or people that know what they want, is there anything the derivatives offer that offers any real benefits? I find the websites to be inadequate in that regards... (I know Sabayon offers you a binary install and then gives you portage as well, and it at least used to have a software center like Ubuntu, but other than that...)

Currently using Fedora as well on one machine and I found that sometimes you need to do stuff that seems "alien" to the distro. Where in other distro's it's rather the normal way of doing things (urgh, kernel compiling). Finding out which gstreamer package had the mp3 codec in them was a bit annoying as well imo. But other than that it seems fine, even though I hate non rolling release I did the upgrade from 19 to 20 with only one hiccup (catalyst package maintainer stopped maintaining) and after too much googling found a solution (which was rather silly tbh).

I don't get these "issues" in Arch or Gentoo, because these things are more commonplace and don't feel like a drag to do or get. Arch has the AUR which solves a lot of stuff for you, so I'm glad to see it's in Manjaro and Antergos. And in Gentoo figuring out what went wrong is rather normal (moreso in the past it seems, don't have many issues anymore).

So I'm wondering, is there a benefit to using a derivative or something like Fedora instead, for someone that is already used to Arch/Gentoo?

Oh I don't know. It stays funny to read "Alan broke it" on a regular schedule :D

I had a whole thing typed up, but then my laptop died, so I'll keep this short.

Yes, some of my posts are arguably coherent - this is known to me. Moving on!

I like Arch for daily use more than Gentoo, but Gentoo is a lot of fun. Binary packages are simply faster to get from the repo to use, since, well, you don't have to compile them. Not to say that there aren't great benefits to compiling from source, but the point remains that I personally prefer Arch over Gentoo for my personal use. Slackware is also fun, and incredibly stable. So, yes, that is the order in which I like them: Arch, then Gentoo, then Slackware.

When you have a derivative of Arch, or Gentoo, or anything, the "benefits" generally come with preconfiguration. A well-made, tight XFCE theme on Manjaro with a consistent look and feel, for example. Some variations might come with a hardened kernel by default (Grsecurity, PaX, etc.), or have their own repos. Nothing you can't install or setup on your existing Arch is present in Manjaro, it's just preconfigured that way. Sure, architectural differences can come up that really set distros apart, but with derivatives, that usually isn't the case, especially, for example, in Manjaro's short lifespan. It also ties in your statement about users not wanting to, or knowing that it is possible to change, or configure, WMs/DEs. For me, system theme consistency is important (for no reason), so configuration is key. If users would just mess with some new setups, try non "McDonalds" distros, and non-default WMs/DEs (tiling WMs, for example - there are tons of them with incredibly cool features that so many people don't know about), then you (they) will understand thefun aspect of Linux, while learning to streamline their personal use.

You say that you are glad to see the AUR in Manjaro and Antergos - you can get the AUR on any Arch derivative or variant. Yaourt is in the archlinuxfr repo.

As for the benefits of one distro compared to the other, especially Fedora vs Arch, Zoltan would be better at answering that (as he has before, look at some of the other threads in the Linux forum). It comes down to architectural differences, release differences, and optimization differences. Many distros, ontop of the kernel, are very different architectually - Arch does things differently than Debian does, or Fedora does, and so on. Most of that is internal and doesn't impact you that much (unless it's just a horrible implimentation and is terrible in performance or functionality), but it can lead to much faster development, a simpler, more efficient distro, and overall ease for user-end development. Again, you mentioned that you don't like the non-rolling release of Fedora - that is another big difference between many distros. Some users prefer rolling (as I do), and others want to update everything in one big jump.

So, yes, that is the order in which I like them

That's fine, just wasn't entirely clear that that was the specific order and I would just switch around a bit :) (to each his own eh).

system theme consistency is important (for no reason)

It kinda is for me too, but the biggest issues I've had were Qt vs GTK applications that would just contrast each other. But lately it either doesn't bother me as much or it has improved a whole lot in the last say 5 years or so.

You say that you are glad to see the AUR in Manjaro and Antergos - you can get the AUR on any Arch derivative or variant. Yaourt is in the archlinuxfr repo.

I meant it seems like it's there by default, while in Arch you have to install an AUR manager yourself, and remember to use it. Not everyone knows about the AUR or is sceptical about it. I'm sort of managing an Arch box of my friend (he does most of it since he learned a lot in the past few years, his first box was completely managed by me) and I need to keep reminding him of checking the AUR.

About Yaourt: I'm not sure how uptodate this is, but I switched to Packer from Yaourt because Yaourt was rather slow. The creator made a whole post about what was bad about Yaourt and such but I can't find it and I know he cleaned up his forum thread about it so I'm not sure if all that is still around. Anyways, the first time I used Packer there was a huge speed increase in searching the AUR. If you didn't know Packer you might want to try it out, but since then Yaourt might have improved.


The only derivatives I've used were Ubuntu (meh), Sabayon (meh, felt like I could just as well use Gentoo since Entropy wasn't what I was looking for), and Fedora (well it's from Red Hat so I count this as a derivative :p). And so far I found them mostly annoying or not adding anything useful for me, mostly a lot of bloat (Fedora isn't too bad in that). And from your answers it would seem that I might as well just stick to what I've been using over the past few years (Arch or Gentoo) and be just as happy.

Don't get me wrong, I do know "easy" distro's are useful, and I might just check Manjaro out one day since I see it mentioned a lot in these forums. Just in case I ever need an easy (well, easier) to use distro for someone else or for when I'm in a hurry. (Still need to check out Mandriva at some point but that's been on the list for a few years now as well)

In the past the only useful feature in distro's that came with a DE and the whole smack of packages for me was the autoconfig of xorg. And that was one huge feature, I ended up a few times not getting xorg working (properly) myself and just copied the xorg config file from a livecd :P

I think that the reality is that the bleeding edge distros are becoming ever more similar, just because they are so full-featured:

- they all use systemd

- they all have SELinux headers in the kernel by default

- they're all binary/source, as Arch is source-based via AUR, and Yum in Fedora and Portage in Gentoo can do both RPM binary and source without any difficulty whatsoever

- Fedora Rawhide is quasi-rolling, the Fc-release has a very powerful updating system and a lot of updates, no dependency is ever spared like in other distros, the kernel upgrades are pushed out as they come, and with every new release there is the easy upgrade via FedUp, which is so easy because there isn't all that much to upgrade anyway, it's more a package database rebuild than anything else, but it has the added advantage of refreshing the system.

- They all do zero-day patching, important patches are rolled out hours apart between the three distros. In Fedora, there is the added benefit of the ABRT (which I don't use to be honest, I bugzilla manually with libreport because it saves time on both sides, as ABRT files a huge log, and the devs have to weed through that to find the important info, I prefer to just file the important part, faster on my side, faster on their side), which allows the devs to push out personalized patches to systems with a certain configuration by specifying multiple specific profiles in the repos, which is pretty amazing, and I've never experienced breakage in Fedora that wasn't solved within a couple of hours (well, except for those damn nVidia proprietary driver modules every time a new kernel comes out, that can take almost 24 hours sometimes);


In the end, Ubuntu 14.04 will be released in April with kernel 3.12.0. That's just preposterous to be honest. Fedora release is now on 3.12.7 build 300, and that's fucking conservative and completely stable, and probably tomorrow, the update to kernel 3.12.8 will be pushed out. When Ubuntu 14.04 comes out, it will be full of bugs and regressions as always, and it'll be provided with a by then more than 6 months old kernel (3.12 was available since spring, was released in november last year), that has not been tested in an Ubuntu development release yet... oh boy... It also means that Ubuntu users will not have access to HSA functions until at least november 2014, IF 14.10 is stable enough to even try.

I like and use all major linux distros (Debian, Slackware, OpenSuSE, Rosa/Mageia, Fedora, Arch and Gentoo, those are the major distros, everything else is not a major distro period), but for desktop/laptop use, I favour the bleeding edge triumvirate because of the fucking quality they bring, more features, more speed, more stability, more compatibility, more software, more ease-of-use, more security, more of everything, and I mainly use Fedora because I have RHEL servers and workstations, and I also like the extra Fedora functionality of yum and fedup and other thingies, but I could just as well use Gentoo or Arch, and I do also use those, and I also like Manjaro and Sabayon, which in my opinion are the best respins of Arch and Gentoo for the desktop users that want to save time.

Servers is another story, Debian servers have advantages, I wouldn't want a bleeding edge server install, with daily updates and stuff, and always learning new tools and interfaces, but I use RHEL instead of Debian, because I want support that can be held liable all the way upstream. I might go for RLEL or SLES in the future if I don't like what RedHat is doing, but I would go for those for exactly the same reasons.

Maybe I missed something. Did Gentoo switch to systemd or is it still optional? I rather like OpenRC (or whatever it's called).

Maybe they're all getting pretty close, but I've never had the same issues I had on one distro on another (except for a few smaller ones like video tearing, but that's just vsync/compositing issues). A fun example is grub (legacy) that forgets which hdd had which assignement. The /dev/sda1 during install could become /dev/sdc1 in the actual OS, but I've only encountered this in Arch (so far anyways) on 2 different machines. And I think there's still enough differences to have a preference, even if they might be minor. I like certain package managers for example and absolutely dislike others (aptitude, brrrrr).

And AFAIK there's still a difference in packages, no? I know Arch was proud to be very close to vanilla sources of packages while Ubuntu likes to get its hands dirty and customize them so they "work better" for them. (Which can be very annoying when good patches don't get pushed upstream -or aren't accepted)


I haven't been keeping myself uptodate about the goingon's in Linux since I decided on Arch/Gentoo (Fedora is mainly playing around for now, was on the list for a long time as well and I had enough parts to play around with it only recently). But you hear all kinds of crazy stuff these days. Apparently people think Debian is rolling release now (well, not the stable one)? (haven't been able to really confirm that anywhere as of yet, but I haven't put any effort in it either)

And what's the deal with CentOS, isn't that a derivative of RHEL or Debian (I forgot which)? Why does it seem like this is a popular one in enterprises, and even for at home I see it mentioned an aweful lot. Wouldn't you be better off with RHEL or Debian then?

So much to keep track of while I already made my decisions... (been using Gentoo on and off for the past 11 years, only Arch managed to get my interest but I'm currently not using it myself for no particular reason)

Having a wide interest and so many distractions, not a great combo, heh.