mintCast 250 – The Return of Arch




Texas Linux Fest:

  • Rob reports back on how Texas Linux Fest went.
    • Cody — Registration
    • Nicole Engard — ChickTech Austin (
    • Jeff, Eilene — SE Linux Fest
    • Jim Simpson — Free Software Foundation

Main Topic:

  • Isaac tries out Arch Linux again and thinks he might have found the perfect distro.

Tips & Websites:

Pre-Show Music:

Podcast Announcements:

  • FOSS TALK LIVE 2016 – August 6, 2016, The Harrison, London, UK
    • Sold out, but no reason you can’t go to the pub they will be at and have a beer and talk with other FOSS lovers
  • 2016 Ohio LinuxFest – October 7-8, 2016, Hyatt Regency, Columbus, OH
  • List of conferences according to the Linux Foundation

More Information:

Hosts: Rob, Scott, Joe and Isaac
Live Stream every other Sunday 2:00 p.m.(Central):

Contact Us:

More Linux Mint info: website, blog, forums, community


Podcast Entry and exit music provided by Mark Blasco ( Podcast bumpers provided by Oscar.

7 Replies to “mintCast 250 – The Return of Arch”

  1. nD

    You guys totally forgot to read my comment on ep #249 about toe the line: shred. From a “common tasks” standpoint — this is definitely one you need!

  2. Will

    I’m glad to hear that Arch has been working more smoothly for Isaac this time. I have been using Arch for a couple years and haven’t felt the need to try anything else. I haven’t had any major issues with it. I think Arch’s reputation for instability comes from a few different sources. First the AUR is totally community run and not coordinated with the main repos, so sometimes an Arch update will temporarily break an AUR package. Second, there are more frequent updates, so packages that frequently introduce backwards incompatible changes (e.g. GNOME) can cause issues when they are updated (for GNOME, the extensions often aren’t compatible with the new version right when it comes out). Third, major structural changes might require some manual intervention. Arch was already on systemd when I started using, but I imagine it took some work to upgrade to using systemd when Arch first switched over.

    Be sure to check out this page, Isaac:

    It depends on what your ultimate goal is, but I imagine after Isaac finishes with Linux from Scratch that he will end up back on Mint. There is a lot of value to learning the details of how the tools you use work, but once you know it you often want to just get other things done. It was fun setting up the Arch install I have been using, but the next time I need to set up a computer I might just go for a distro that sets up the display manager and desktop environment for me rather than one that requires that I start off by manually partitioning my drive.

  3. Hank Barta

    Nuke & Pave vs. upgrade…

    Time to complete – I suppose there may be more processing as install scripts (during an upgrade) have to examine precious configuration files and adjust them as needed for the new version. That’s the only reason I can think of for the 2 hour time to upgrade.

    Saving/restoring the installed package list. I think there’s a minor risk here that some package name has changed between releases suck as a new version suffix. An upgrade script can accommodate this but blindly installing all of the old packages will not. It is also possible that dependencies for some packages change may have changed. Apt will pull in new dependencies but will ‘autoremove’ get rid of unneeded dependencies if they are explicitly installed?

    I usually upgrade from one dist to the next but every once in a while I perform a ‘nuke & pave’ as a cleansing measure. I reinstall things I use regularly as I use them. Reinstalling gets rid of things I installed, tried once or twice and never touched again.

  4. Hank Barta

    Distro hopping

    I’ve done my share of distro hopping and practice a couple things to facilitate that. First is when I partition a hard drive I’ll create several 30GB partitions for the root file system (some swap space) and the remainder of the drive for personal data. I can then install several distros or an upgrade for a current distro and easily switch between them by rebooting. I used to mount my personal data at /home but found that configuration settings for different distros and/or desktop environments conflicted with each other. In order to avoid this problem I no longer mount my personal data at /home. Instead that remains part of the root directory. I then symlink any directories in my $HOME directory that I want to share between distros to the corresponding directory in my personal folder. I do not include configuration directories so that these remain specific to the distro. I’ve only run into a couple of quirks with this approach. For example the command “find Documents …” finds nothing since it does not cross mount boundaries. However if I type “find Documents/ …” I get the results I expect. Apparently the trailing backslash follows the link so ‘find’ starts in the filesystem that holds my personal files.

    The script I use to perform this is:
    hbarta@yggdrasil:~/bin$ cat

    for i in Downloads Documents Music Pictures Videos Templates Public \
    `cat /mnt/home/hbarta/Documents/Computer/yggdrasil/files.lst`
    if [ ! -L $i ]
    if [ -e $i ]
    mv $i $i.bak
    ln -s /mnt/home/$USER/$i /home/$USER/$i
    echo linking $i
    echo $i is already a link


    (Comments? I don;t need no steenkin’ comments! 😉 )

  5. mikef90000

    UPDATE from #249, Clem@LM has posted (github?) that the x-apps menu entries will be updated to include the app name. This may appear in the title or description, not clear yet.
    In the meantime I do it myself :-). No more wondering which ‘image viewer’ I have installed.
    As an Xfce fan I will note that it will not change much (good). The x-apps will be available as well as xfpanel-switch (for backing up / restoring panel configs – yay!). The Xfce project site has been pretty quiet as they are concentrating on GTK3 migration of the DE now. I suspect that they may use most of the x-apps as default. Not sure about apps like xfburn, but just discovered that brasero now works with r/w media and has one more feature than the former. Time will tell ….

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