I can, since I contribute to the testing and promotion of antiX, provide a few comments and perspectives on the software, the compromises that are made, and what can be done, either to cope and deal with them, or to compensate for them.
First, the overall community recognizes that there is still room for additional improvement in the documentation and the usefulness, particularly to first time users. Where things currently stand in the antiX 12.0 release cycle is that we recognize that some things have not been correctly written or updated for the current release. We can always use more people who like to write, and are good at explaining things to new or prospective users.
What we do have is a really personable, experienced user community that helps people out through our forum. We do not have a huge base of people who help out, but those we do have are extremely helpful, knowledgeable, and they rate well compared to some of the best distribution forums available, not in the volume of what they produce, but in the quality of the discussions. I find the signal to noise ratio to be fairly high, much more so, in fact, than some of the big, really busy forums, so for me, that is a big positive.
I am not sure that I would categorize antiX as a "beginner" system, though because of the ability to use either the Base or the Full versions straight from the CD, and the ease of the installation, someone who has two or three other systems under their belt, but not necessarily an expert at anything, is more of the target audience that most appreciates antiX. People who enjoy tweaking and experimenting with their systems, especially older systems, are definitely the primary targets. Paul, a.k.a. anticapitalista, definitely falls into this category himself, and that is why he first created antiX from a scaled down MEPIS system back around 2006. Ever since then, other MEPIS enthusiasts have contributed and added significantly to his work, and anti himself has made tremendous strides in the creativity and flexibility of the three alternatives that are now available.
When antiX first became available, I was very interested in it. I now appreciate it so much, that I prefer it to SimplyMEPIS, though I'm fond of MEPIS too. I use MEPIS for stability; I use antiX for speed, customization, and flexibility. It is hard to beat in its areas of greatest strength. With Debian software archives behind it, and tools, such as the Meta Package Installer, the smxi system administration tool, you can customize antiX into anything you want, even a full-blown custom desktop system or an effective server, whatever you want.
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