Enthusiasm Lost For Linux On The Desktop


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Praetor

A long developpement delay between XP and Vista and the flop that it was as given Linux Devs plenty of time to give us something that "just work".  Instead it's the adoption of OS X that grew in that period.  Then we got Windows 7 and it was bliss again, until Windows 8...  

 

I guess Linux had lots of time to become good.  But the lack of interest of the what, 92% of Windows users?  Is not forcing any devs to bring good apps to Linux.  The only major thing that happened with Linux is SteamOS but even that is a little bit stale...

 

I've tried many distro, but with my dual monitor setup, sound card, video, ... I've ran into problems like all the time.  Enough to make me WANT Windows back on my PC.

 

To each their own.

 

This. Linux has too much distros, too much time to grow and it didn't (Vista fiasco, 8 fiasco). Meanwhile OSX grew allot; some clients i have are now 100% OSX, having coming from Windows and / or Linux/UNIX. Why? because it just works.

 

I, myself, i'm platform agnostic: whatever works i'm in. But i do see that while other OSs had their highs and lows but continued to grow, Linux still retains some stigmas, like being "too difficult to learn", "it's all CLI and that's retro" and "my apps or games don't work!".

 

Granted, there are several things that hurts Desktop Linux alot and as long some things won't change (still using X, still having subpar AMD and Nvidia drivers, still lacking mainstream software, games and such), Desktop Linux won't launch. Simple. Also the fact that Linux zealots don't understand the price for changing OS: the cost of buying the same apps all over again, the earning curve, the fact that older generations don't want to waste time learning the intrinsics of the OS but want something that just works while younger generations are all over OSX because their phones have a similar experience...

 

On the other side, the server side of Linux is pretty successful? Why? Because the big enterprises invest alot of money developing a good, stable, secure and pretty good OS. Something that lacks (investment) on the Desktop side of Linux.

 

Honestly, Desktop Linux is like the Windows Phone; runs on low end hardware, is pretty good but only a few have it.

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chrisj1968

The problem is the AMD and Nvidia camps lack of driver support for linux. I'd be so bold as to say this lack of support is on purpose in some way

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dead.cell

The problem is the AMD and Nvidia camps lack of driver support for linux. I'd be so bold as to say this lack of support is on purpose in some way

It's called saving money by not investing as much to such a small market. Not sure what else there is to see behind this. Money talks; even Microsoft has no shame in supporting iOS and Android before WP at times. :pinch:

 

Here's hoping things still get better, but for things like multi-monitor to be behind today... That's one of the reasons it's been hard to get behind Linux. I only use it when I have to, considering I'm a gamer as well.

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Lant

I've reached the point where I want Windows on my desktop, so it "just works". I don't have the time or energy to spend getting a Linux graphical shell set up and working nicely.

That said, I happily do significant software development and other work in my many Linux VMs, where most of the time I just have a text editor and a terminal open.

I just don't see the Linux Desktop as something I need or want.

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Brian M.

For me, more than anything, it comes down to productivity. I'm more productive when using a unix based system simply because it's what I'm used to. I use OS X and Linux on a regular basis - and I find I'm much more productive when I can fall back to a shell than I am with Windows (which I haven't really used as my main OS since Windows 98). I have a Windows VM for testing stuff but I really struggle using it. Partly because most of the commands/keyboard shortcuts I use are different, but partly because I'm just not used to the workflow in Windows - especially recent versions.

 

As for which distro - I use Debian, not because I think it's better than any of the others, but because it's the one I have the most experience with, and in this game more experience = a better chance of knowing how to fix something when it breaks.

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Haggis

I use Linux 100% in the house and have done for over 3 years now

 

I use Linux mint not and have settled on this...It just works ;)

 

For times i need to use windows (Itunes etc) i use a Windows VM within Mint, it works perfectly fine.

 

 

I use windows at work and for most users in my workplace they would freak out if one day they came in and Windows was not there

 

But in saying that all our work in in a Citrix Environment so using Linux as a local system would be entirely possible

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Skiver

 

But in saying that all our work in in a Citrix Environment so using Linux as a local system would be entirely possible

Off-topic and I'm sorry but.... Haggis are you responsible for the Citrix Environment in anyway?  :shiftyninja: If you are might want to avoid me on Skype next time  :rofl: 

On-topic - not much I can really add to this, the closest I get to Linux is running the odd command on a Call Manager that I believe runs some form of Redhat, but its pretty locked down in terms of what you can do so I wouldn't really call that using Linux in anyway.

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spy beef

Linux has KVM hypervisor and nothing can beat that. I pass through my gtx 980 to my VM running windows 7 and play Crysis in HD while running Ubuntu at the same time. Actually, I can play all Windows games without having to dual boot.

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theholmboy
AR556, on 23 Nov 2014 - 10:08, said:

Linux's freedom of choice is its greatest weakness. Too much chaos. Someone working on a FOSS project wakes up in a bad mood, they throw their hands up and say Fork it! All it does it divide resources and create more chaos.

This was my issue with it when I tried it as my server OS many years ago...  But, I do really like Parted Magic. :D

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cork1958

I've been an off and on again Linux user for many years now and have settled on Debian full time on 2 of my machines. Actually have had it installed for about a year and a half without a single thing breaking! That's a record!!

 

Back in the days when I was trying that bloated thing called Ubuntu, it seemed like every update caused something to break so bad I would have to totally reinstall. That got old in a hurry. Still can't stand that version of Linux.

 

I would have to agree that drivers, especially video drivers, are the main thing holding Linux back, if I had to pick just 1 thing.

 

Unfortunately though, I can not go Linux 100% on all my machines as things just don't work out of the box like they do in Windows. Maybe if I were better at the command prompt it wouldn't be such an issue, but I just can't stand that!! That would probably be what I would say is the second thing holding Linux back for every day computing and users.

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Haggis

Off-topic and I'm sorry but.... Haggis are you responsible for the Citrix Environment in anyway?  :shiftyninja: If you are might want to avoid me on Skype next time  :rofl: 

On-topic - not much I can really add to this, the closest I get to Linux is running the odd command on a Call Manager that I believe runs some form of Redhat, but its pretty locked down in terms of what you can do so I wouldn't really call that using Linux in anyway.

 

I know some stuff about it, how to fix some errors, lol feel free to bug me :)

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JustGeorge

Linux Mint is probably the best Linux distro out there atm. Assuming you don't run into some stupid, show-stopping bug it inherits from Ubuntu. Honestly, other than the helpful community, I don't see why people continue to support it. Unity certainly isn't setting the world on fire and seems like there are buggy regressions with every release. OpenSUSE is pretty nice OOTB, but YaST blows, IMO and its geared a bit too much toward the advanced Linux user. Fedora with its closed-minded software philosophy and its SELinux BS can burn.

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simplezz

Linux Mint is probably the best Linux distro out there atm. Assuming you don't run into some stupid, show-stopping bug it inherits from Ubuntu. Honestly, other than the helpful community, I don't see why people continue to support it. Unity certainly isn't setting the world on fire and seems like there are buggy regressions with every release. OpenSUSE is pretty nice OOTB, but YaST blows, IMO and its geared a bit too much toward the advanced Linux user. Fedora with its closed-minded software philosophy and its SELinux BS can burn.

I agree that Mint is a very decent distro. It requires minimal effort to get up and running. Along with Xubuntu, it's probably the best 'beginner' distro. Though for more experienced users looking for a tailored environment, it doesn't really fit the bill. "Best distro" is a subjective term based on an individual's requirements. Mint isn't all things to all people.
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James7

Personally I love Ubuntu Studio for making music. And I now am using Unity on my regular computer, it's awesome. I don't know why people go on about Linux On The Desktop as if, because 90% of the people don't use it, it must be a failure. It is a success with me. 

 

Give it time--a few years maybe. ;)

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JustGeorge

I agree that Mint is a very decent distro. It requires minimal effort to get up and running. Along with Xubuntu, it's probably the best 'beginner' distro. Though for more experienced users looking for a tailored environment, it doesn't really fit the bill. "Best distro" is a subjective term based on an individual's requirements. Mint isn't all things to all people.

True, but what customization do most people really do to their OS these days? Not talking about people running servers/business type applications, just average joe. All most people care about is having a stable OS that plays media files, can browse the net, social media and email. Mint is all of that on first boot, minus malware problems (for now).

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jojothehobo

I've read elsewhere too that Linux is losing its enthusiastic user base. I think that is a mistake for a number of reasons. I can't begin to list them all, but I can say that my employer buys all the latest Microsoft and professional applications for my work desktop and laptop and I still do a good fraction of work on Linux and  will really miss it if it is gone. To begin with it is just so painless and easy. My distro updates regularly, every week for me, all my apps and the OS too. I have choices of apps that can do everything I need to do. For the few tasks that require professional, expensive software then I use the mostly  Windows applications, although even there I know how to configure Linux to do them but need the file formats to communicate with others. For example, Libre/Open Office and Scribus beat MS Office and Publisher all to pieces. I also installed  Calligra and WPS for some variety and for the tasks they do better. Sage, R, and Cantor can do just about  anything Windows programs can do with Math. I can also control and customize the  system and develop domain specific distributions for enhanced performance in  specialized tasks, which one can't  with Windows. 

 

In summary, Linux is faster on a given machine, less prone to hacks, is easier to manage and allows me to control my IT budget a lot easier than Windows programs with all manner of money sucking  "options".  There are some areas where  Linux needs to advance faster. Web apps, an update or replacement for X ,and collaboration enhancements for starters. Finally, vendor lock in to the Windows/Apple ecosystem is a sure formula for loss of freedom and exploitation. Linux is the best choice for the 98%. For individuals you can keep an older machine with a generation old Office and Windows for those tasks where full compatibility is required (or go to a library or other establishment. 

 

all the best 
Jojo

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guitmz

I think many "consumer" users end up with windows (aka gaming people that only knows basic stuff - even pro players sometimes dont know how to fix a simple OS error, home users, office users, etc) but that does not mean that linux isnt and wont be great someday.

 

Lets face it, it kicks windows ass in several parts for example the virus problems. End users tend to click on ###### and get infected, thats not a "problem" in linux, etc. Windows has more support because well, its a big company interacting with other big companies (adobe, nvidia, etc). Valve is starting to give linux a shot but as far as i can see is the only major corporation caring about it in a major way. For example if Photoshop ever come to linux nativelly, I really think it would be awesome and push people to developer better graphics, tools, etc. The programing language is not a barrier and you have tons of things to do in linux.

 

People with money just need to give a damn about it and it will work.. Community users cant do everything, the open source drivers for AMD and Nvidia are good but they could be better if they have more attention on it, for now, its just an independent group coding it and for that reason, its freaking awesome where they got so far.

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mjedi7

I agree that graphics drivers and multimonitor support are some of the biggest problems right now. I have an HP laptop with two graphic cards, and every time I install the propietary drivers, the system crashes when I reboot. When I try to connect a projector from school, there's no easy way to switch displays. Also agree about X server being replaced.

As many other tech specialists said before, the main problem of linux right now, is that some tasks that are super easy to do in other OS is really complicated in Linux, if we want the common user to operate Linux, the next stage is make the OS more accessible to normal users, my mom, dad & sister don't care how to modify a conf file or do complicated stuff in the terminal.

Like when your kids go to school and the need to plug a projector or install a new printer, o other sub hardware, why the heck they need root access the do those of things?

Ubuntu is doing a good job in that sense, the installation is easy and fast, but Unity really is heavy and bloated. For a long time I've been using Linux Mint and I have to say it, it's taking the right way.

Definitively Linux has improved a lot in recent years, Linux Mint has matured enough to get the attention of the masses, but still the graphics drivers (open and propietary) are pushing back the enthusiasm about Linux.

Specially now that Windows 10 is being developed in the way most Windows users want. It's a good move from Microsoft. So the Linux community should do something similar.

Lately I've been booting to windows just to play some game or sync an iPhone or iPad on my gaming rig, And on another small pc this is the fist time that I remove windows from the hard disk, and replace with Linux Min, it's been three months and I feel very comfortable with it.

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simplezz

1) If demanding 3d stuff isn't important, then obviously the best option is integrated Intel graphics. Their FOSS driver is excellent.

 

2) Second best would be AMD due to their good FOSS driver support. If you're running a discrete AMD card, chances are that the FOSS driver will run just as well if not better than the proprietary catalyst. I've found xf86-video-ati to be extremely stable and high performing.

 

3) Nvidia should be the last resort in my opinion. While their proprietary driver has in the past been stable and well performing, when something does go wrong, there's little in the way of recourse besides reverting to a previous driver version. The reverse engineered driver Nouveau is never going to match an open source driver that's supported by the manufacturer like Intel and AMD's are. Perhaps if we collectively show our displeasure, Nvidia will join the others by supporting the open Nouveau driver.

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simonlang

I agree that Mint is a very decent distro. It requires minimal effort to get up and running. Along with Xubuntu, it's probably the best 'beginner' distro. Though for more experienced users looking for a tailored environment, it doesn't really fit the bill. "Best distro" is a subjective term based on an individual's requirements. Mint isn't all things to all people.

 

indeed. i always say, despite the fact that there are so many distros out, there just is not a "best distro".

yes, there is for sure a most difficult one (don't count on my knowledge here, i'd say it might be linux from scratch?), there is for sure a most lightweight one, there is for sure a most innovative one (ubuntu with their unity interface), there is a most complete one (Snapshot-Linux), there might be also a most forked one (forks seem to be popular these days, even debian might get forked), and so on...

 

personally, never been a fan of linux mint. i don't like the fact that their package-update settings per default exclude many updates, which has risen a lot of critics, but hey... this is linux world we are talking about. it's not like you have to accept the pros and cons of one distro, you can just get another one.

so much choice  i love it. been through gnome2.x, gnome3, xfce, lxde, unity, and now have settled with KDE 4, which - for me - is just perfect. my Dolphin includes now a folder color choser,  a deb/rpm converter, a fileshredder, encryption, check-sum tools up to sh512, picture converter for size and file format, thumbnail fixer for videos, iso image generator, and many more though not activated atm. interested? look for KDE services menu, which offers over 50 options i think. 

this makes KDE dolphin the most advanced and complete file manager.

but this is just my preference. others might prefer something lighter and be happy with nautilus or whatever else.

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markjensen

It's the same old complaints. No one OS is a "best fit" for everybody.  But Linux provides several different pre-packaged "flavors" that appeal to those with different preferences. And, on top of that, I can replace my window manager with any other of a dozen others without difficulty.  I started with KDE (back in the late 1990s), switched to Gnome for all of a few days, then XFCE for well over a year as I continued to work my way to my Window Manager I loved best (and still do, in some ways), Fluxbox.  I can keep everything else on my system, just change Window Manager as a login option.  What some see is confusing fragmentation, I see as a freedom of choice.  If you don't like ANY of the choices, there are only two choices left: Microsoft of Apple.

I, myself, would NEVER go back to the Microsoft Mess for package management. Maybe "Mess" is the wrong word.  I'll say "Empty Room", because they really don't have anything other than Windows Update. Installed apps must provide their own code to update themselves. Most don't. I like just doing "apt-get upgrade" to get my updates (or the GUI interface for updates, where you can click a friendly "OK" button).

My Linux is *my* Linux.  I am happy with it - but then again, I don't game.  That may be a deciding factor for many of you.

Cheers!

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Barney T.

^ Agreed (Y)

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simonlang

It's the same old complaints. No one OS is a "best fit" for everybody.  But Linux provides several different pre-packaged "flavors" that appeal to those with different preferences. And, on top of that, I can replace my window manager with any other of a dozen others without difficulty.  I started with KDE (back in the late 1990s), switched to Gnome for all of a few days, then XFCE for well over a year as I continued to work my way to my Window Manager I loved best (and still do, in some ways), Fluxbox.  I can keep everything else on my system, just change Window Manager as a login option.  What some see is confusing fragmentation, I see as a freedom of choice.  If you don't like ANY of the choices, there are only two choices left: Microsoft of Apple.

I, myself, would NEVER go back to the Microsoft Mess for package management. Maybe "Mess" is the wrong word.  I'll say "Empty Room", because they really don't have anything other than Windows Update. Installed apps must provide their own code to update themselves. Most don't. I like just doing "apt-get upgrade" to get my updates (or the GUI interface for updates, where you can click a friendly "OK" button).

My Linux is *my* Linux.  I am happy with it - but then again, I don't game.  That may be a deciding factor for many of you.

Cheers!

 

so many good points in there and i always wonder, except the obvious fact that for gaming you either buy a console (considerably cheaper) or go for a top high-end windows pc, that in a forum with so many technical advanced users like neowin, linux, which in theory should apply to these users, get's threaten like c*ap.  :(

and from many postings some beginners might conclude that actually apple and ms would be state of the art, while the opposite is more true.

linux today does about 99% of things better and offers more options than the others. go try to freely scale your taskbar in windows. good luck with it, because, it still is not possible. 

dunno if true or not but from a recent convo on irc i learnt that there is apparently still no archiver for windows out, which does automatically create a folder if the zip  contains only files so if you don't extract in an empty folder you would end up searching for the extracted files arround your other files. this is no issue with ark for example.

booting and installing from live-cd / usb is also much much better solved with linux. you can open a webbrowser to kill some time during installation, while on windows you are forced to just watch the installation progressing.

i agree with the software. package manager system in linux is awesome, fast, stable, reliable and secure. plus, stuff is open source.

see it from a beginners point of view. he needs a program let's call it abc123, he will obvously start to google for it. in most cases now the first few search results will link to dubious pages offering you to directly download this .exe file and we all know that this means, you aleady have a virus infection and probably a trojan horse or backdoor as well.

 

freedom of choice is very important in software/hardware world i think, in world generally. i found no reason why this widely accepted fact that today not everyone drives a trabant, but instead some drive a mercedes, others a fiat, others a honda, etc. did not translate into that when it comes to OS. 

 

the combination of the ammount of choices, that all is open source and costs nothing is impressive. it's not like linux developers need to make money or profit so they have to develop new things. they do it basically for free and these 10euros i donated to KDE recently felt so much better and more worthful than the 100s of euros i was forced to pay to use windows.

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DQF

For me using Linux (Ubuntu) was nice but ultimately what I wanted was something to use and not manage, so I went back to Windows. In many ways the issue with Linux is much like Microsoft and Windows it got the audience it aimed for. Linux was built for users who value control of software over other things. It was built in the reflection of Unix but came of age with the growth of Windows. In many ways Linux developed to be a rebuke to Windows even though its users and thinking sometimes overlap. Right now consumer Linux is Android and ChromeOS, not the litany of Distros. And the future is mobile which favors pure Linux and Windows less.

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Max Norris

so many good points in there and i always wonder, except the obvious fact that for gaming you either buy a console (considerably cheaper) or go for a top high-end windows pc, that in a forum with so many technical advanced users like neowin, linux, which in theory should apply to these users, get's threaten like c*ap.  :(

Some of us actually just might prefer Windows or OSX as their desktop OS, we know the strengths and weaknesses of each OS and yet surprisingly people will have a preference. I personally have been using Linux since day one, Unix a decade before Linux was even a thing, I fully know what it can and can't do and I know what it is and isn't good at, and I'm obviously not the only one. For me, Windows on the desktop and *Nix as a server using that Windows desktop as a front end, works spectacularly well, got ~15 BSD and Linux servers here to prove the point. Some people will choose something else. I do (mostly) like some of the Linux desktops, but it's not for me, too much compromise and doesn't really bring anything that really matters that I can't get elsewhere. That's just me, certainly not implying that's for everyone, I'm all for people exercising that right to choose.

As far as getting the warnings though, well there's a line between arguing a point and trolling. (In general, not directed at a specific person.) It's even better when those same people complain in a thread when somebody else does it to them, saw this just the other day.. love to hijack a thread and throw the usual 1995's Windows FUD (many times not even on topic), but then somebody comments in a Linux thread and the tears start. Sure, there's some people who get fed up with Windows and switch to something else. It's not surprising, but that's going to happen in reverse too.

 

and from many postings some beginners might conclude that actually apple and ms would be state of the art, while the opposite is more true. linux today does about 99% of things better and offers more options than the others. go try to freely scale your taskbar in windows. good luck with it, because, it still is not possible.

99% is a stretch, many of the things Linux can do the other OS's can as well in one form or another. I'll give you the freely scalable taskbar (personally not a fan, especially KDE's which doesn't even tell you how high it is anymore), but then it falls flat on its face in other areas. If we're going to pick something out of left field, how about wanting to re-organize your launcher menu? Good luck with that, need a menu editor, can't simply drag and drop.. kind of a bizarre omission in this day and age. Or how about dealing with multiple monitors in a sane way?

 

booting and installing from live-cd / usb is also much much better solved with linux. you can open a webbrowser to kill some time during installation, while on windows you are forced to just watch the installation progressing.

Well, as you say you're using a live CD. Not all Linux distro install media is a live CD however. I've installed a good number of *Nix desktops and servers where I was, yup, forced to watch the installer. Not that it's a huge selling point.. once and done and all that. Mirror the thing when you're done and you'll never have to watch that installer again.

 

i agree with the software. package manager system in linux is awesome, fast, stable, reliable and secure. plus, stuff is open source.

No argument, that is changing though, the development toolchain already has it, the desktop stuff is supposedly coming. And the open source thing isn't an issue, Windows has tons of that too, including a good portion of that very same stuff that Linux uses, and there is stuff in Linux that isn't open source too.

 

freedom of choice is very important in software/hardware world i think, in world generally.

Then the Linux community in general needs to acting like it -- it's all rainbows and unicorns with the "freedom of choice", but then they blow a gasket and start jumping on people's sh't when people actually exercise that choice and pick something else.
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    • By n_K
      No disto is perfect, I've been using arch for a number of years now and generally find it to be quite good, but for a rolling release distro that claims to be for power users and for system reconfiguration and the like, there are some things in it that really ###### me off and I just feel like getting them off my chest:
      The pkgbuild system: I actually like how the system works, generally, but if you want to change how things are configured there's some scenarios where you're stuffed; Static packages: The great thing about the pkgbuild system is you can edit your /etc/makepkg.conf file and stop it removing the static library (.a) files from packages and just build them... Right, RIGHT!? Wrong. Each package's pkgbuild generally includes '--disable-static' lines in the configure, heck glibc removes all .a files in it's package part of the build script. If rules were followed and none of this bad behavior happened in pkgbuild files then it'd be great but this really annoys the heck out of me. Building packages not cleaning up after themselves: so you're trying to build a package from source and it's failing multiple times, it also so happens you're patching files in the pkgbuild... Each time you try to recompile you get the interactive patch come up saying a change has already been applied do you want to remove it. Either the patch should be reverted if an src folder is detected or (and I don't know why it doesn't do this) the src directory should be cleared first "Invalid PGP key": Whilst trying to build packages with a fresh install using pkgbuild, half the time it download and gives an error saying the PGP key isn't valid (needs a .sig or whatnot file in the pkgbuild). I understand why this might be useful to some people, but if I want to recompile a package from a pkgbuild I've downloaded off the arch site, why should I have to go in, manually remove the .sig file and the MD5/SHA checksums for it? Missing dependencies: This is generally only an issue with the AUR, but a large number of pkgbuilds are actually missing dependencies required to build them in the pkgconfigs. Surely there must be a better way to generate the require dependencies... Overwriting files: I like how you can specify some files when building packages that the user can change which won't be overwritten, however it'd be nice if you could apply that globally to a system. Audio support in kde5 for example, like gnome3 kde decided to remove a fundamental feature allowing you to specify what the volume step would be, (sigh, every time I see a group do this I really do get a mental image of sheep just jumping around underground having absolutely no idea what they're doing), so you have to manually change a file and reboot - great it works! Only when you update the package, it goes back to the default of 10 steps, so then you have to go search what file it was, go and edit it and reboot - this is a hassle. Packages pulling x11/mesa dependencies in for no reason: x11/mesa is absolutely not needed on a server, it's a complete waste of space and inefficiency in libraries/programs, but as time goes on more and more packages have just had mesa added as a dependency - I'm really not sure why. If I go to my server and try to update (it's running a very old release of arch) it wants to download over a gig of mesa crap which has been pulled in by an update to a package I have installed. Syslinux install script: I like the syslinux install script, but surely it wouldn't help to, gosh I don't know, not automatically have "root=/dev/sda3" in the command line? I've never installed arch linux to /dev/sda3, it should instead see what the mounted drive is or (preferably) use the UUID. The documentation: the wiki can be a great source of knowledge, but there's also some incredibly outdated information there too, some pages for example still refer to openrc which was removed... I can't even remember how many years ago. Removal of ifconfig in default install: yes net-tools is old and outdated, but it's simple, powerful and easy to use. I can setup or change my network configuration in a matter of seconds, compared to ip which is just an un-intuitive mess. Every other distro I've seen still included net-tools by default except arch, and if you install arch, reboot having forgotten to install net-tools then it's a pita to try and work out how to use ip - some great guides on the internet but for that you need an active network device....  
      Anyone else got similar nagging issues with arch?