Arch Anywhere – An easy way to install a fully custom Arch Linux system

About Arch Anywhere

As the name implies, Arch Anywhere let’s you to install a fully functional, custom Arch Linux system with graphical desktop environment and extra software can be installed in minutes without much hassle. Arch anywhere has a graphical installer script that allows the users to easily install Arch Linux with a simple menu system. Arch anywhere is made for especially for beginners, and of course as well as for advanced users too. It has a built-in Arch Linux wiki, so that the users can browse through any pages on the Arch Wiki page. For instance, if you want to refer the ‘Arch Linux beginners guide’, then just type “arch-wiki beginners guide” without quotes. This will pull entire the ‘Arch Linux beginners guide’ in the command line. Cool, isn’t it?

Features

The prominent features of Arch anywhere are given below.

Install types:

  • Arch Linux base and base-devel packages
  • Arch LinuxLTS base and base-devel packages

Partitioning methods such as;

  • Full drive automatic partitioning with optional SWAP partition ;
  • Full drive automatic partitioning full luks on LVM encryption for root and tmp partition with optional enctypted SWAP partition ;
  • Manual partition (advanced users) with your choice of partitioning tool: cfdisk, fdisk, gdisk, parted etc.

Supported Desktop Environments and Window Managers:

  • AwesomeWM
  • Cinnamon Desktop
  • DWM DynamicWM
  • EnlightenmentWM
  • FluxboxWM
  • Gnome Desktop
  • I3 i3WM
  • KDE/Plasma Desktop
  • LXDE Desktop
  • LXQT Desktop
  • Mate Desktop
  • OpenboxWM
  • XFCE4 Desktop

Supported Graphics Drivers:

  • ATI/AMD xf86-video-ati open source drivers
  • Intel xf86-video-intel open source drivers
  • NVIDIA: Stable, 340xx, 304xx closed source drivers
  • VirtualBox Guest Utilities Drivers

Bootloader support:

  • Grub (Grand Unified Bootloader)
  • Support for UEFI boot
  • OsProber (Dual-Boot Support)

Network Utilities:

  • Netctl
  • NetworkManager + Applet (Recommended for desktop)
  • WPA Supplicant
  • WPA ActionD
  • Wireless Tools

For the complete list of features, refer the link given below.

Installation

Download the latest version from here. Arch anywhere is a dual Arch Linux installer ISO, containing both 32 bit, and 64 bit architectures. Write the installer ISO to any CD or USB drive and boot up the system.

The following screen should appear.

You can either select 32bit (i686) or 64 bit( x86_64) installer. I go with 64bit installer.

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Here it is how the installer screen looks like.

To start Arch Linux installation, just type arch-anywhere in the command prompt.

To search through the Arch wiki page, type:

arch-wiki

Or

arch-wiki <search args>

For more details about Arch anywhere, simply type: help

To return to the main screen (the above screen), type: start

Let us start to install Arch Linux. To do so, type:

arch-anywhere

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Select your installer language:

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Select Yes to start Arch anywhere installer.

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Select your desired locale:

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Select your Time zone:

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Select sub zone:

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Select your key map:

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Here comes the important section. Arch anywhere supports three methods of partitioning:

  1. Automatic partition ;
  2. Automatic partition with encrypted LVM ;
  3. Manual partition.

If it is a fresh installation with single hard drive, you can either choose first or second partitioning method. In these two methods, the entire hard disk data will be erased and automatically partitioned.

If you have multiple drives and want to setup different partitions on multiple drives, try manual partitioning method.

I go with default option, i.e Automatic partition.

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Select the hard drive to install Arch Linux.

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Select your filesystem type and select OK.

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Next create SWAP partition. Click Yes to create Swap partition.

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Enter the Swap partition size (2XRAM size).

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I don’t need GPT partitioning, so I chose No.

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Verify the partition details and select Write-Changes to continue.

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Then the Installer will ask you to update the mirrorlist. It is recommended to have the updated mirrorlist. Select Yes and hit enter.

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Select your country or nearest mirror location:

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Finally, select the type of system you would like to install. If you are not sure, use Base or Base-devel.

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Select Yes to install Grub boot loader.

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If you have wifi network card, select Yes, else select No and hit enter key.

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Select Yes, if you want to install multiboot option:

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Select Install to continue installing Arch Linux on your hard drive.

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It will take a while depending upon your Internet speed.

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Select Yes to add multilib repository.

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Select Yes to enable DHCP. If you don’t have DHCP server, simply select No and configure your network manually.

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Setup your Arch system’s hostname:

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Enter the password for root user account.

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Re-enter the root user’s password:

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Create a new user account, for example ostechnix.

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Enter the login password for the new user:

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Re-enter the password:

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Select Yes to enable sudo privileges for the newly created user. So that the new user can perform administrative commands with prefix ‘sudo’.

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Next, the installer will ask whether you want to install a Desktop environment or not. Select Yes and hit enter if you wanted to install a DE or select No.

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Select your desired DE:

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Select your desired graphics driver. If you not sure about driver, just go with default selection. It will automatically detect the drivers.

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If you’re installing Arch anywhere on a Laptop, select yes to install Synaptics touchpad.

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Select Yes to install graphical login manager:

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Select Yes to confirm installing your DE:

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This may take a while depending upon the size of your selected DE.

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Select Yes to install some common software for day to day usage:

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Then go through each menu and select your list of additional software.

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Once you selected all required software, select Done Install option to continue installing the software.

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Select Install and hit enter to continue the installation of extra software.

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Wait for a while:

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Congratulations! Arch Linux has been successfully installed. Remove the installation media and select Reboot system option from the menu to complete the installation.

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In case you forgot to add a user account, install a DE or install an additional software, you can browse through the respective link in the above wizard and complete the installation.

After rebooting, Select the Arch Linux from the boot menu.

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Log in to the newly installed Arch Linux.

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Start using your newly installed Arch Linux system.

Arch Anywhere

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Have fun!

For any questions, bug reports, comments or suggestions, Email to the developer or leave a message in the comment section below.

The developer of Arch Anywhere have created a video tutorial for Arch Anywhere installation. Check out the following link.

That’s all for now. If you find this tutorial helpful, please share it on your social networks and support OSTechNix.

Thanks for reading!

Links:

  • Wykedengel

    Since I only plan to have Arch installed on my laptop, is there anyway I can remove the boot menu or at least hide it?

  • Tomas Pranciškus Mažvila

    got ERROR: ‘/dev/disk/by-label/’ device did not show up after 30seconds…
    how could i solve this problem?

  • Niki Moijing

    Thabk you for the information…