How to install Arch Linux

One of the most famous distributions based on the Linux kernel, Arch is considered. Among other platforms, it stands out for the complexity in installing and configuring, but it attracts users who want to learn more about the structure of this operating system and enhance the level of knowledge to use the classic console. Arch Linux is installed completely by hand, from creating hard disk partitions and ending with adding new accounts. All actions are executed via the Terminal by inputting the appropriate commands.

Install Arch Linux

In this article I would like as much detail as possible to consider the installation of this platform, taking into account pre-configure all components. We broke the whole process into steps that novice users make it easier to navigate. For the installation you only need the flash drive with a minimum 2GB or the same disk. Everything else is loaded from the Internet or added directly during the OS installation. Note that adding each of these components is performed via an active Internet connection.

Step 1: Download the image distribution

The platform, like most other Linux distributions, is free and can be downloaded from the official website of the developers. Recommend to use this source, because you are guaranteed to get a working image without any error and malicious files in.

Download distribution Arch Linux from official website

  • Click the link above and select “Download”.
  • Can use any mirror, but we suggest to choose the BitTorrent link.
  • After downloading, run the file using any torrent client and wait for it to complete booting the image disk.
  • Now the computer has a full operating system image. It remains only to record onto a disc or flash drive, then you can proceed directly to the installation process.

    Step 2: Create bootable media

    Now more popular USB sticks because they are easier to drive, and the right connector is present on all computers. Therefore, we focus on this version. You’ll need to use a special program, which will allow the creation of a simple flash drive bootable. Detailed instructions on this topic are in a separate article in the following link.

    Read more: burn the OS image on a flash drive

    Step 3: set BIOS to start the boot stick

    As you know, beginning the operating system installation is performed after inserting the drive and restarting the computer. In this case, it is important that the BIOS booted from the USB drive and not the hard drive. To ensure the successful implementation of this task will need to manually set the priority via the BIOS settings. To deal with this procedure will help the other stuff on.

    Read more: set up BIOS to run from USB drive

    Step 4: download the installer and sign in Live-mode

    After performing the previous step, it is sufficient to insert the flash drive into the free slot and start the PC. After a certain amount of time the screen displays the boot loader Arch Linux. There are some points, for example, restart, or view information about the hardware, but now you are interested in a “Boot Arch Linux”. The arrows on the keyboard to select the item and press Enter.

    This will start the download of all the standard components for Live mode. This may take several minutes so do not turn off the PC and do not press any keys on the keyboard. After successful download you will get to Live-mode console where you are the further installation procedure.

    Step 5: hard disk Layout

    Partitioning a hard disk first, what will face the user when installing the reporting platform. For correct operation of the OS all disk space should be divided into several logical volumes, each of which will store its own information, the storage parameters also must be set manually. In General, the process is simple, just need to execute multiple commands and closely monitor their spelling in the console.

  • The layout of the drive should be carried out in a standard utility, and run the”Terminal” you need to enter cfdisk /dev/sda.
  • Priority select the partition table. Newer is considered to be GPT, so it’s best to use it, if not can choose.
  • The arrow keys move between the connected devices. Select the drive for the layout and activate the item “New”by navigating to it with arrow keys Left and Right.
  • Separated first place under the GRUB boot loader. It provides the correct starting of the operating system. It is always recommended to allocate to it a separate section. You will only need to set the volume and press Enter. The loader will be enough 200 MB.
  • If you chose GUID partition table and not MBR, additionally creates a logical partition to store bootloader image. Again select “Free space” and “New”.
  • The image loader is to separate 1 megabyte of free space.
  • Now assign this section a specific type style with the boot when the computer starts. To do this, in table select “/dev/sda2” and go to menu “Type”.
  • The arrows on the keyboard scroll down to “BIOS boot” and press Enter.
  • Additionally, it creates the root partition where you will put all the system files. Again in the table, follow the usual steps of specifying the size of 20-30 GB.
  • Next, create a partition that will serve as the home directory. Get under it almost all the available space, leaving a few gigabytes for the paging file (recommended paging file size in the Arch is equal to the amount of RAM in the PC). Finally, after the home directory, create a swap file, and in the end you should have five sections. When the procedure is complete, save the changes by selecting the option “Write”.
  • Confirm the entry by writing the string “yes”.
  • After all, you can quit the partition editor by clicking on “Quit”
  • At the end of this step, the hard disk will be divided into required number of partitions. You will only need to make adjustments by setting the file system and priorities, then everything will be ready to install.

    Step 6: Formatting and mounting partitions on the drive

    Now all partitions created does not belong to the certain file systems and their installation should be formatting. Due to the fact that all volumes were manually created, formatting and mounting should be carried out independently.

  • Section loader is better to define the format FS “ext2”to provide the best work. So in the console, activate the command mkfs -t ext2 -L Boot /dev/sda1, where /dev/sda1 — the first partition created.
  • The second section is an initial image doesn’t need formatting, so go to the main system directory and format it in a familiar format “ext4” enter mkfs -t ext4 -L Root /dev/sda3.
  • Exactly the same action you want to run with your home directory, typing the expression mkfs -t ext4 -L Home /dev/sda4.
  • The swap file is also not formatted, so I mount it via mkswap /dev/sda5.
  • The connection you created also is done manually, only after that they will be suitable for the job. We must start with the root directory sudo mount /dev/sda3 /mnt.
  • Next, create a separate folder for the bootloader and the home directory using sudo mkdir /mnt/{boot,home}.
  • It remains only to assemble the remaining sections of successive input lines mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/boot, mount /dev/sda4 /mnt/home and re – swapon /dev/sda5.
  • All sections are successfully prepared for further installation on them OS Arch. If everything went without any errors, feel free to skip to the next step.

    Step 7: install the system

    As mentioned earlier, to complete the Arch installation, you need an active Internet connection, because additional components are downloaded it from the official repositories. If a wired connection is established immediately, then Wi-Fi is necessary to alternately execute the following commands:

    ls /etc/netctl
    netctl start profile

    Defining the connection, you can proceed to installation, but first we recommend you to choose the best mirror to download process went as quickly as possible:

  • Run the file with the mirrors via the command vim /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist.
  • Copy one of the mirrors by double pressing y, and then move it up the list by inserting a key p. Exit the file by pressing Shift + : and enter wq.
  • Run the installation of packages by typing pacstrap /mnt base base-devel.
  • Wait for the installation to complete. During this operation, do not restart the computer or press any keys on the keyboard.
  • Adding packages will be completed when the console displays a new input line. This means that you can start the initial configuration of the system.

    Step 8: configuring after installation

    It is important not only to add all the necessary components, but to configure the main parameters to interact with the OS as comfortable as possible. Pay attention to the following, they just are designed for optimal configuration:

  • Priority in the system folder is created a configuration file for all the mounted file systems. It will not only keep useful information, but also to describe the type of integration of the drive in the OS. To create a component, use the command genfstab -U /mnt >> /mnt/etc/fstab.
  • The bootloader is not yet ready, so restart is impossible. To perform further configuration, log in using arch-chroot /mnt.
  • Set the time zone using sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Kiev, where Europe/Kiev — a necessary region. Use the following command sudo timedatectl set-ntp 1to set the network time Protocol.
  • You’ve previously experienced the work in a text editor vim , before installing Arch Linux, but now this important component is missing from the system. Install it with the command pacman -S vim or pacman -Sy vim.
  • Confirm adding packages by selecting the appropriate option when prompted.
  • After that there is activation of the encodings, which will run the OS. It is necessary to correctly display the various characters of the Cyrillic and Latin alphabets. Run the appropriate configuration file: vim /etc/locale.gen.
  • Remove the sign # from the appropriate lines, for example, en_US.UTF-8 and en_us.UTF-8. Save the changes and exit the editor.
  • Need to update a complete configuration by entering locale-gen.
  • Now switch the operating system language to Russian for the convenience of further controls: echo "LANG=en_us.UTF-8" > /etc/locale.conf.
  • Select the computer name that you need when accessing it. Use the command echo "user-pc" > /etc/hostname, where user-pc is the name of the device.
  • It remains only to confirm user by adding it to the configuration file. First run it vim /etc/hosts.
  • Enter the line user-pc.localdomain user-pc, complete the entry and close the editor.
  • Some processors require the way early boot to properly run the OS. If you are not sure whether we need it, just in case, install the image using mkinitcpio -p linux.
  • Set the password for root access via the command passwd.
  • Only to install GRUB and configure the Internet. Installed it in a standard way: pacman -S grub.
  • After is added to the disk grub-install /dev/sda and create a separate configuration file grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg.
  • Internet configuration-network also is carried out until the system is rebooted. Note the following commands and execute them one at a time:

    ls /sys/class/net/ (determining active network interface).
    cp /etc/netctl/examples/ethernet-dhcp /etc/netctl/ethernet-dhcp (backup configuration file).
    vim /etc/netctl/ethernet-dhcp (run the config file through a text editor).

  • In the configuration file, change the Interface to one that you learned previously using the command ls.
  • Activate the selected profile the default netctl enable ethernet-dhcp.
  • Exit environment exit, then unmount all filesystems using umount -R /mnt and reboot Arch Linux by typing reboot.
  • This procedure is complete the operating system configuration completed. It remains only to wait for reboot and you are ready to work.

    Step 9: Using Arch Linux

    Usually a distro Arch Linux interested in those users who already had earlier experience with other, more simple builds on this core. However, this does not negate the fact that novice users also come to this platform. They need to be prepared for the fact that most of the actions and settings made via the standard console. To see the performance of the main features you can in our articles at the following links.

    Moreover, today you are faced with a number of popular teams that have to use the”Terminal”. We offer carefully examine each of them and try to remember the use, syntax and spelling. This will also help extensive materials.

    Our article is completed. I hope you easily mastered the whole procedure of installation and during its implementation did not have any difficulties. For more information on working in this platform, please consult the official documentation, developed by the creators of the system.

    General recommendations Arch Linux


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