Arch Linux and how Manjaro is related to it – Manjaro Linux User Guide

Arch Linux and how Manjaro is related to it – Manjaro Linux User Guide

December 7, 2023

Arch Linux and how Manjaro is related to it – Chapter 1.2

This is the second of the free articles directly taken from the Manjaro Linux User Guide book, available at The full list of freely available articles is here: Manjaro Linux User Guide – For newbies, fans, and mid users.

Read time: 2 minutes. Previous article: 1.1 Book Structure and contents. Next article: 1.3 About Linux, Windows, MacOS, And Unix.

Manjaro Linux User Guide book - Arch Linux and how Manjaro is related to it. Second of the freely released chapter sections.

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Arch Linux is one of the fastest and most lightweight major Linux distributions. Major means that it serves as a parent to multiple child distributions.

What is a distribution

A distribution is a combination of the Linux kernel, a large amount of additional SW, graphical environment SW (the type of windows, menus, and other GUI features), and tools. The combination of all these additional SW and tools is what makes a significant difference. Some are designed mostly for servers, while others are designed for PCs. Some are rich in features (e.g., 3D effects on a desktop by default), while others are lightweight or even for microcomputers (such as Raspberry Pi, ODROID, and Pine). You can learn more about the major Linux distributions in the last part of this chapter.

Why was Arch created

Arch is famous for its official principles, which are simplicity, modernity, pragmatism, user centrality, and versatility. In practice, they are implemented with many useful features. These include a secure OS with the option of a full OS and user data encryption, fast and designed to be optimal in resource usage (regarding CPU, RAM, and OS load), configurable in every possible aspect, and with SW and kernel kept up to date with the latest changes. Arch, and also the Manjaro community, name this last feature bleeding-edge SW.

Unfortunately, Arch is not convenient for regular users as, despite its powerful usage and configuration, it is complex and by default a Terminal-based distribution without a Graphical Environment. In addition, it is so rich in features that learning how to use it takes many months.

What Manjaro adds for us

Manjaro sits as an Arch-based distribution with hundreds of preset configurations, several graphical environments to choose from, and lots of additional tools and SW. This makes it a far more user-friendly and easy distribution for any user, straight out of the box. It also adds many unique additional features and so serves as a lot more than “just pre-configured Arch”. Manjaro also sticks to the initial principles behind Arch a lot, so the user only gains from all the additions.

Here are the most important reasons why Manjaro is a great choice:

  • A high-speed/lightweight OS optimized by default. Thus, the user rarely needs to do anything to improve its already great speed and efficiency.
  • A great amount of the newest bleeding-edge SW packages, following the Arch principles. The Manjaro team regularly configures updates and adds new packages, provided via an easy install and update GUI SW. The update system is robust, with configurable automatic functions.
  • Perfect security, including a full hard disk system and user data encryption, and 100% user privacy (the distribution doesn’t collect user data by any means).
  • Regular kernel updates provide the newest kernel with all the features and fixes. It also allows you to switch the kernel between the latest versions and older LTS releases, providing additional flexibility when needed.
  • Many regular hard Linux configuration tasks go via GUI modules, so the user is not forced
    to learn many Terminal commands (unlike Arch, which is configured only via the Terminal). The GUI control is excellent for all daily tasks.
  • 2D and 3D Gaming is flawless. Since 2017, several big game companies have started developing games for Linux, and there are multiple open source frameworks for game development under Linux.
  • Regular computer, PC, and laptop HW is supported automatically, so there is no difference between Manjaro and Windows in this regard.
  • Manjaro has a rolling release model based on Arch, so OS and SW updates (including security and hotfixes) are always applied ASAP.
  • A lot of legacy and some relatively modern Windows SW can be run.
  • The Manjaro community provides a good amount of online manuals and an extensive forum database, which provides news and answers to all common issues. When you post in the forum to seek help, thousands of users can assist you if a solution for your issue is not already found.
  • Finally, all the preceding features have been supported for over 12 years. The Manjaro team retained them completely even after creating a private Manjaro company in 2019.

According to, Manjaro was ranked in the top 3 distributions for five years (from 2017 until the end of 2021). Now, it is in the top 5 and was, until 2021, the only Arch-based distribution in the top 5. Although the DistroWatch rank is not an absolute evaluation, it is a serious achievement measure.

For a regular user, Manjaro can offer more than Debian, Slackware, Ubuntu, and other distributions. Essentially, it is Arch Linux with a lot of splendid configurations on top, with a great GUI, stability, tons of additional available SW, and graphics.

Next article: 1.3 About Linux, Windows, MacOS, And Unix.

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