There are many things to love about the Linux operating system, and while it isn’t an option for everyone to use like Windows or macOS, it is feature-rich.
Unfortunately, since most Linux distributions do not offer the familiar interface that is available on macOS and Windows systems, and they have a learning curve to use, this advises many applications against switching to Linux.
Garuda Linux tries to solve this challenge and make Linux more accessible to laypeople.
What is Garuda Linux?
Garuda Linux is a relatively new Linux distribution based on the Arch Linux operating system. It aims to bring outstanding performance and modern, attractive features to existing and new Linux users.
Although it is based on Arch Linux, it comes with the Calamares graphical installer to make installation easier. It also offers a wide variety of desktop environments including KDE Plasma, Gnome, XFCE, and more.
Garuda Linux also offers a rolling release model with regular updates and an extensive collection of software packages.
Garuda Linux Flavors
Although Garuda Linux is a newly developed distribution, it comes in a variety of flavors for your most popular desktop environment. Some examples of Garuda Linux flavors are GNOME, KDE Plasma, XFCE, LXQt-KWin, Wayfire, i3wm, Qtile, BSPWM, and Sway.
It also offers the Dr460nizeD version, a customized version of KDE Plasma that offers a dark, blurry interface for modern desktops. It aims to emulate a macOS with the title bar positions and the navigation menu.
In addition to offering different flavors, here are ten other things that make Garuda Linux one of the most popular Linux distributions of 2021
1. Easy to use Calamares installer
Although Garuda Linux is an Arch Linux based distribution, it uses the Calamares installer which removes the complexity and time consuming procedure of installing Arch based distributions.
The installation of Garuda Linux with Calamares only takes a few clicks.
2. Fantastic user experience
Once you have Garuda Linux installed, you will be greeted by a welcome screen with a warm and straightforward message welcoming you to Garuda Linux. This screen also allows you to use the setup wizard to configure your system for the first time.
Garuda Linux offers extensive user interface functionality with familiar navigation menus and icons. Therefore, exploring Garuda Linux is straightforward.
Depending on the version of Garuda Linux you have installed, you will get typical applications like the Firefox web browser, VLC media player, a terminal, GIMP, Steam, timeshift backup utility, and software market pre-installed.
The default username and password are Garuda and Garuda, respectively.
3. Easy software installation
The installation of software packages under Garuda Linux is very easy. The distribution uses the Pacman installer and a collection of software packages from the standard repositories.
Garuda Linux also imports Manjaro Linux’s Pamac installer so you can install software packages without touching the terminal.
Garuda Linux also offers snap and flatpack support and comes standard with the Arch User Repository enabled.
NOTE: Although Garuda Linux is supported, we do not recommend using snap packages.
4. Recovery options
As a rolling release, Garuda Linux updates software packages on a daily basis. Unfortunately, running such updates can break your system and render it inoperable.
To mitigate this, Garuda Linux has a built-in timeshift backup utility that allows you to take snapshots of your system. In addition, Garuda gives you access to the system snapshots directly from GRUB, which can be extremely useful if the system does not boot successfully.
5. Better / improved filesystem
Garuda Linux uses the B-Tree File System (BTRFS) by default. BTRFS addresses various limitations of the Linux file system such as checksums, pooling and snapshots. It also allows for easy management, fault tolerance, and repairs.
Btrfs also gives Garuda Linux the ability to self-heal by using checksums and metadata to detect and repair corrupted data. Therefore, Garuda Linux with BTRFS is a significant advantage.
Garuda Linux has a gaming edition, a KDE version of Garuda Linux that is geared towards gamers. This gaming edition contains all of the software a gamer could need. The pre-installed gaming software in the gaming edition of Garuda Linux includes Steam, Gamehub, Boxtron, WINE, Proton GE Custom, Gamemode, vkBasalt, itch, Lutris, Minigalaxy, Heroic Game Launcher, Oversteer and SteamTinterLaunch.
It also comes with gaming tools like OpenRGB, KeyboardVisualizer, DisplayCAL, NoiseTorch, Discord, Mumble, Piper and CoreCtrl.
7. Garuda Assistant
One feature that makes Garuda so popular is that it provides a simple graphical utility for managing the system and performing administrative tasks. For example, the Garuda Linux utility allows users to manage repositories, clear logs, back up the system, manage the file system and systemd processes with simple clicks.
8. Hiring Manager
With Garuda Linux’s Settings Manager, Manjaro users feel right at home. In addition, the graphical tool for managing the system, including installing a new kernel version and managing drivers, is preinstalled in Garuda Linux.
Although relatively new, Garuda Linux has a great community ready to solve problems and make the system better. Additionally, since it is based on Arch Linux, the Arch Linux and Arch-based distribution communities can help resolve any issues that may arise while using Garuda Linux.
10. Very customizable
Garuda Linux offers its users a collection of customization functions. It enables users to add and remove driver versions, install custom kernels, and fully optimize their desktop environments. Garuda Linux also supports the BleachIt utility which allows you to clean up the system and remove any unwanted bloatware.
In addition, Garuda Linux comes with a barebone version that does not contain any additional software packages or functions other than the minimal packages. Garuda Linux Barebones are therefore suitable for users who are looking for individual freedom of adjustment.
Is Garuda Linux For You?
Garuda Linux is one of the new Linux distributions aimed at bridging the gap and making Linux operating systems friendlier for desktop operating system users. Thanks to its customization options and collection of software packages, you can use Garuda Linux as your daily driver.
Garuda Linux also removes the complexity of installing Arch Linux, making it easy and convenient for new Linux users to experience.
If you’re looking for a simple Linux distribution that gets things done with little effort, Garuda Linux could be for you.
Manjaro Linux: Arch for people who don’t have time
About the author