Arch Linux vs Ubuntu- choose the best

Linux Distros has provided several best-in-class operating systems for its dedicated users. Linux mainly got its fame among the community of developers and coders.

Arch Linux and Ubuntu are the proud family members of Linux Distro. Both are considered as the beast of operating systems.

Now there begins a serious discussion when we talk about comparing Arch Linux and Ubuntu. 

There arise some important points regarding these two operating systems which makes them different from each other.

Today I will be digging down deep and comparing these two beasts. But before jumping right into the difference first let me a review of both Arch Linux and Ubuntu.

So let’s get started.

Arch Linux- A Review  

Arch Linux is one of the most renowned members of the Linux Distro family. The OS is based on x86-64 architectures. You can download Arch Linux from its official website and can install it very easily as it offers a very smooth installation procedure.

The developers have designed the operating system based on the KISS principle (keep it simple, stupid). It is an open-source operating system that supports community involvement.

The operating system is mainly focused on usability and functioning. Some of the key features include,

  • Elegance 
  • Code correctness
  • Minimalism and Simplicity

Arch Linux developers use a rolling release model, which means Linux does not release any major updates rather they believe in keeping your system updates via regular updates.

Ubuntu- A Review

After the release of Linux in 2004, it was divided into proprietary and unsupported community editions and there no option for free software. That is when a small team of Debian developers created an easy-to-use desktop operating system called Ubuntu.

Ubuntu is now considered as the leading operating system for desktops, servers and also IoT devices. One of the major characteristics of Ubuntu is that it does not divide its effort into a commercial version and a free community version.

The developers combined these two versions to create a high-quality operating system. Ubuntu became very popular for cloud computing purpose with support for OpenStack.

A default installed Ubuntu offers a wide range of pre-installed software that includes LibreOffice, Firefox, Thunderbird, Transmission and many more. It comes with a default file manager called GNOME files. 

Arch Linux vs Ubuntu- Which is the better one?

Now that you have a basic concept of both Arch Linux and Ubuntu we can start our main discussion that among Arch Linux and Ubuntu which one is better for you and why.

Sit back, relax and read the article till the end to know the better. 

Arch Linux vs Ubuntu: Specifications

                        Ubuntu                       Arch Linux
Based On:
Debian Stable (Core)
Based On:
Default Desktop Env:
Default Desktop Env:
Official Support Architectures:
Official Support Architectures:
X86-64 (AMD64)
Package Manager:
Package Manager:
Release Schedule:
Point (5-year LTS/6-month releases 
Release Schedule:
Main Usage:
Current Linux Kernel:
OS family:
Minimum Available Storage
Isle of Man
Minimum Sytem RAM:
512 MiB

Arch Linux vs Ubuntu: Pros

There are several advantages of using both Arch Linux and Ubuntu. But they have different points of advantages which makes them unique and different from each other. 

So let’s see some of those points.

                       Ubuntu                      Arch Linux
More support:
Ubuntu is one of the most famous distros of the Linux family so it provides a wide range of online support to the users like Ubuntu Wiki, Ubuntu Forums and Ask Ubuntu.
Package for everything:
In an Arch Linux, if you want to install some new applications, chances are someone has already created a package for that application. 
Wide range of software:
There is a vast range of pre-installed apps available in Ubuntu. From music and video players to office applications, everything is available for the user.
Rolling Release:
Arch Linux believes in providing a rolling release model. That means rather than releasing a major update it releases regular updates to keep your operating system up-to-date.
Works smoothly:
Ubuntu offers a smooth download and installation process which means it becomes easier for the user to use the OS for their daily purpose. It also saves the time that you spend on forums for installation guidance.
Slim and Compact:
Arch Linus likes to keep its core slim and free from unnecessary dependencies. Upon installation, only a bare system is set up. So you can download the applications you need directly from the package manager. 
The use of Ubuntu is not only confined to PCs. Rather it is mainly developed for touch-screen devices like mobile phones and tablets. Ubuntu has a Long Term Support so that you can use the same version of OS on different devices.  
Control over Everything:
Unlike Ubuntu, Arch Linux is released mainly for experienced Linux users. Therefore, there is no concept of hand-holding. 
Dedicated Software Center:
Ubuntu software center offers a GUI interface where you can surf and install new apps. This GUI interface is very easy to use and is famous among the beginners of Linux.
Fast and Simple:
Pacman has a performance advantage. There are fewer repositories. The package management is combined into a single form rather than splitting into dpkg, apt-get, and apt-cache. 

Arch Linux vs Ubuntu: Cons

Despite being the best-in-class operating systems, Arch Linux and Ubuntu have some cons or disadvantages of their own.  So let us discuss what are the major cons.

                          Ubuntu                         Arch Linux
No rolling release:
Ubuntu releases new updates two times a year. In these updates, the operating system only receives security updates and minor bug fixes.  
The new release needs high bandwidth:
As you know that Arch Linux provides a rolling release. The OS takes an update whenever the packages are ready. And for that, you will be needing a connection with high bandwidth.  
Require high system requirements:
The default GNOME requires hardware-accelerated graphics in order to run smoothly. Ubuntu does not run properly on low-end systems. 
Fragile Packages:
Updating the Arch Linux is not that simple. Sometimes the packages contain bugs which can cause several difficulties. There are also changes total shut down of the system after a major update.  
Now, this is a biggie. Upgrading Ubuntu is risky. New system updates can disturb many routines and functions. Even LTS releases sometimes don’t work properly.
Just like Ubuntu, this is a major issue of Arch Linux. In some cases, you might get a surprise but most of the time those issues can be fixed.
Twisted GNOME version:
Instead of an original GNOME desktop with Ubuntu, you can also get a twisted GNOME and that can make the user much worse.
Requires experience:
You just cannot just shift to Arch Linux OS from your current OS. You can use the OS for learning purposes but to get the most out of it you need some pre-knowledge about Linux.
Not really necessary:
After the removal of Unity from Ubuntu, it does not makes any sense of using Ubuntu over Debian
Pacman is slow:
If compared to other distribution packages, Pacman is really very slow. Sometimes extracting packages from Pacman can take ages. 

So Finally…

I think now you can decide which one you should choose for your purpose. Like all other Linux Distros, Arch Linux and Ubuntu have both pros and cons. We have deeply discussed every point (both in the pros and cons) mentioned above so that you make a wise choice.

Now if you ask me which one is better? I would say according to several market research it is seen that people are more likely to choose Arch Linux over Ubuntu. But that does not mean anything. You read the article carefully and choose the best one for you.