Manjaro is one of the most popular Linux-based operating systems these days, and it isn’t hard to see why. It is based on the rock-solid Arch, but unlike that distro, Manjaro is very easy to install and use. In other words, it has all the benefits of Arch, but without the hassles and headaches. This makes it a great choice for both Linux experts and beginners.
Manjaro 20 “Lysia” was released back in April, and it was very well received by the Linux community. Today, the first point update, Manjaro 20.1 “Mikah,” becomes available for download with a trio of desktop environment options — Xfce (4.14), GNOME (3.36), and KDE Plasma (5.19). All three DEs are excellent, but Xfce is what the developers consider the “flagship.” The Xfce variant comes with an all-new theme called “Matcha.” All versions of Manjaro 20.1 come with Linux kernel 5.8, Pamac 9.5.9, and ZFS installation support.
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“Our KDE edition provides the powerful, mature and feature-rich Plasma 5.19 desktop environment with a unique look-and-feel, which we had completely re-designed in Spring 2020. The full set of Breath2-themes includes light and dark versions, animated splash-screen, Konsole profiles, Yakuake skins and many more little details. We have rounded off text editor Kate with some additional color schemes and offer Plasma-Simplemenu as an alternative to the traditional Kickoff-Launcher. With a wide selection of latest KDE-Apps 20.08 and other applications Manjaro-KDE aims to be a versatile and elegant environment ready for all your everyday needs,” explains Philip Mueller of the Manjaro team
Mueller further says, “With our Gnome edition based on 3.36 series we include visual refreshes for a number of applications and interfaces, particularly noteworthy being the login and unlock interfaces. GNOME shell extensions are now managed using a new Extensions app which handles updating, configuring and removing or disabling extensions. A Do Not Disturb button was added to the notifications popover. When enabled, notifications are hidden until the button is toggled off. By default our own dynamic wallpaper changes its colour theme throughout the day. Additionally we updated GDM and improved our Gnome-Layout-Switcher a lot. We updated our list of pre-installed packages, zsh is the new default shell and applications are now sorted in folders in a clean app drawer.”
Ready to install one of the best Linux distributions on the planet? You can download a Manjaro 20.1 “Mikah” ISO using the links below. If you want the purest Manjaro experience — as the developers intend it — you should get the Xfce variant. With that said, I would suggest trying both the GNOME and KDE Plasma versions too. The former in particular is considered to be the best overall desktop environment by many in the Linux community.