I’ve been using Linux for a long time, since 1998 As far as I recall and seen many changes and popular distros come and go. I started with Redhat 5.2 in a boxed setup which had a whole manual to help you install it ..
After Linux Mandrake pushed boundaries in usability , installation, and becoming the Ubuntu Linux before Ubuntu ever existed. Sadly Mandrake lost its way a little and died before being resurrected as Mandriva and recently coming back more strongly as Mageio.
Instead I moved to Ubuntu on the second ever release back as Warty Warthrog, 4.10 , after always wanting an easy to use stable distro, that had the Debian base or upgrades far better than that offered by rpm based distros at the time. I stuck with Ubuntu a long while, and stuck with Unity, but just found it wasn’t ideal for a work distro, but great for an absolute newcomers linux.
I moved to Linux Mint, which I still use at home, and like a lot apart from two things:
- The change to only updating most packages far less frequently (In prefer to add ppa’s and get newer packages for a number of applications
- I found that Cinnamon although a great Desktop, I still love, is just a bit ……………………. slow …
I’d heard about the ‘Rolling release ‘ distros such as Arch and a few other flavours but they didn’t quite fit, or in Arch’s case, very interesting , blisteringly quick, but needing quite a bit of time to get setup and dangers in instability just when you don’t want them
I instead looked for an Arch clone as I like ‘the Arch way’, but preferred a slightly different route. There are others, but I preferred a non KDE distro which ruled out a couple of options and found myself downloading and trying out Manjaro off a Linux format disc in a VM. I was impressed ! So fast even in Live mode. packages far newer than in most distros without endless ppas required. I tried the standard Manjaro iso first with XFCE, which I hadn’t tried for a few years but found it had really come on leaps and bounds and was missing very few touches that I had with cinnaman as part of Mint. For that matter there are community build versions of Manjaro with Cinnamon so you can have your cake and it. But so far I’ve stuck with the XFCe version, which is so fast, its like adding another couple of CPU’s to your pc.
Its still early days and I hope I don’t find any breakages which has happened to others on odd occasions, but as being a non newbie I can usually fix most systems if required.
There si a new major version coming up shortly 0.90 currently in prerelease 5 , which promises a lot, but as a rolling release I have it already, with my upgraded 0.8.12 version I installed a while back.
But don’t take my word for it , give it a try yourself … nothing to lose.