Rejection Report 1: Antergos and Neptune


Updated: April 25, 2016

I really hate doing this, but I must. Having wasted about two hours of my life trying to get a bunch of distros to boot means I have to let that negative energy get released, and the only way is to write an article. And so begineth a new series, Rejection Report.

In this saga, I will report on all the different distros that giveth me grief and not alloweth me to boot them properly, either from USB or DVD or both. In any case, since I won't be able to give you all the goodies, I will give you a few baddies. And that's fair. Follow me.

On today's menu

After getting a bunch of recommendation from readers, I added Antergos and Neptune to my list. First, I tried Neptune. It should have worked beautifully, being Debian based, and honestly, I don't recall that any Debian-based distro failing me on the G50 machine. At first, we did have some issues with UEFI, but I'm not going to give anyone any more slack. Year 2016, everyone should be able to boot using the new mechanism, and if not, then it is not meant to be.

But Neptune didn't behave nicely. And no, I do not have a problem with my hardware or my external DVD tray, because only a few weeks back, I successfully tested MX-15, and the installed set of half a dozen distros works just fine. Even Fedora. Blimey. Then, to be on the safe side, I tested again with MX-15 and Ubuntu from a USB drive, and they reached their respective desktop environments without any problems. But Neptune refused to do that, even booting from optical media. I tried twice, and failed.

Antergos is an Arch-based distro. Yes, truth to be told, most Arch distros struggle with my Lenovo laptop. But then, some others worked just fine, like Manjaro for instance. Antergos has already failed once before, but after my recent successes with its brethren, and the fact Fedora did finally make progress, I tried to give it another shot.

At the very least, I would expect it to reach the desktop. But it didn't. There was the boot menu, the gray-gradient splash screen, and then sounds of silence except for the patter of my tears hitting the desk. Neither USB not DVD worked. Nope.

This is not fun. Recently, I also had Pisi and ROSA fail me. Still, I sort of tried my best to entertain you, and booted these as virtual machines. Limited results, but better than nothing. Now though, my patience had run dry. I will not be doing this with any other distro unless we have exceptional mitigating circumstances. From now on, there will be these rejection reports, and this is how the reviews will end. I expect the developers to do their best and fix their systems.

Furthermore, when I think about it, there is absolutely no consistency in how one should go about creating bootable USB drives with this or that distro. You may use unetbootin, you may use the Universal USB installer, or a bunch of other tools. DD, image writer, you name it. Why does this have to be so bloody difficult? Why would ever a distro not be able to boot from a thumb drive, but it might from DVD? How stupendously complex is it to provide for a simple, truly universal method of creating bootable media?

Because there's nothing more to add, a few unrelated pictures are in order. I hope you will find the following shots of nature and cars enlightening enough. At the very least, you can appreciate my artistic skills. Or not.

Random 1

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Conclusion

So perhaps you won't learn anything about how these two perform in terms of aesthetics, media support, performance, or smartphone connectivity, but you know how well different distros handle brand-newish hardware. My Lenovo G50 is a fairly stock 2015 machine, and there's a distinct split on how it is supported. Most Debian distros are fine, most others are not. Red Hat and openSUSE are on the fence.

I am quite disappointed. And also somewhat angry. Because I'm being prevented from having fun through no devices of my own. Well, devices. You get the pun. Honestly though, there's nothing more annoying, save maybe a GRB, than not being able to complete a distro test. That's proper blue balling. I lost time. And time cannot be reversed. So I must be more mindful in the future. If it boots not, trash. Done.

Cheers.

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