Talk:Installation guide

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Read this first before adding new suggestions

  • systemd tools such as hostnamectl, timedatectl and localectl do not work in the installation chroot environment, so please do not propose to use them in the guide unless you can prove that they have been made to work also in that case. See [1], [2], [3] and [4] for some past discussions about this issue.
  • localectl list-keymaps does not work due to bug FS#46725. For the chosen replacement command, see [5].
  • localhost must be set explicitely in /etc/hosts, as it is otherwise resolved over the network. See FS#56684.

-- The ArchWiki Administrators 22:17, 2 September 2016 (UTC)

Link to the German version

Instead of de:Arch Install Scripts you could choose de:Anleitung für Einsteiger it means "Beginner's Guid" and is a very detailed artikel for very new arch users and the future experts.

Thank you, done. -- Kynikos (talk) 16:31, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
This was already proposed last year and rejected: [6]. I don't see what has changed since then. If someone adds me as admin to the german wiki or changes the protection settings, I can update de:Arch Install Scripts as required. -- Alad (talk) 18:13, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
I see, I didn't remember that discussion so I've reverted the change, hopefully you'll make it to update the translation, let's leave this open until the problem is solved, otherwise this kind of suggestion will keep appearing recurrently. -- Kynikos (talk) 17:53, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

Why should a static IP be preferred over in /etc/hosts?

"If the system has a permanent IP address, it should be used instead of"

I think the ArchWiki should not just say do X but also why. Alad as you added this, perhaps you can explain?--Larivact (talk) 15:14, 21 May 2018 (UTC)

In Network_configuration#Local hostname resolution: "For a system with a permanent IP address, that permanent IP address should be used instead of" -- Lahwaacz (talk) 06:48, 22 May 2018 (UTC)
First appearance in our wiki, cited source, also discussion. -- Kynikos (talk) 10:26, 22 May 2018 (UTC)
Clear enough, close. -- Blackteahamburger (talk) 01:58, 10 August 2020 (UTC)
This should be explained in the guide or at least in Network_configuration#Local hostname resolution. Explaining stuff in the edit summary or on talk pages is not enough. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 09:43, 10 August 2020 (UTC)

Wording in example layout table and size of EFI partition

Formatting the ESP

I believe myself that the partition table should be modified. When Going through the install, it was confusing how swap was the last partition, usually suppose to be the partition before Root, as if the computer loads up swap before user login. Didn't realize that a GPT disk needed to be formatted until reading this guide: . Would recommend at least linking to this section of the document or even input Format partition section within the Wiki. Shaggy (talk) 20:15, 29 June 2020 (UTC)Shaggy

The order of partitions is irrelevant and it has (mostly) no effect on booting. The fact that the ESP needs to formatted after its creation cannot be simply stated, as it could be misinterpreted as requiring to always format it, even if is an existing partition that already has a file system.
After reading an anecdote, I think moving swap before root should be considered :D
-- nl6720 (talk) 09:39, 1 July 2020 (UTC)
I've been thinking, how about placing the mkfs.fat -F32 /dev/sdxY command in Installation guide#Format the partitions. EFI system partition#Format the partition could instead be modified to omit the FAT type (i.e mkfs.fat /dev/sdxY). FAT32 is a recommendation, but not mandatory, thus it's more appropriate for the Installation guide, and this would allow to document the 2 MiB FAT12 formatted ESP, used by User:Eschwartz and others, in the EFI system partition article. -- nl6720 (talk) 11:14, 13 August 2020 (UTC)

HiDPI on the console

With an ever increasing number of HiDPI displays, including at the begging of the article a section about adjusting the scaling factor or changing the font can be helpful, see HiDPI#Linux_console. Goetzc (talk) 02:21, 8 August 2019 (UTC)

It could be added as an example for setfont in Installation_guide#Set_the_keyboard_layout. The issue I have is that HiDPI#Linux_console mentions that tty2-6 may be unusable, while the Installation guide specifically instructs to change ttys as required in Installation_guide#Boot_the_live_environment. -- Alad (talk) 13:07, 7 September 2019 (UTC)
May be as an example for the line "See README.bootparams for a list of boot parameters" Installation_guide#Boot_the_live_environment, it could be specified to hit e button to edit the boot entry and add the following parameters to the boot line, like video=1920x1080 if you have HiDPI display. -- Xzorg6 (talk) 22:41, 15 December 2019 (UTC)
video= will just change the resolution. To get a bigger font on the console, you need CONFIG_FONT_TER16x32=y in the kernel config and fbcon=font:TER16x32 in the kernel command line. Since the official kernels don't enable CONFIG_FONT_TER16x32, someone will need to open a bug report asking for it. After that, the instructions for setting the fbcon=font:TER16x32 kernel parameter could be added to the wiki. -- nl6720 (talk) 06:52, 16 December 2019 (UTC)
linux 5.5.6.arch1-1 (currently in testing) has CONFIG_FONT_TER16x32=y (FS#64861). If if gets move to core before March, then the March iso will have it. It's probably a good idea to start drafting a tip to place in Installation guide#Boot the live environment. -- nl6720 (talk) 11:12, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
And just after I wrote this, the package was moved to core. -- nl6720 (talk) 11:27, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I'm seeing multiple claims[7][8][9] that people with HiDPI screens are getting the TER16x32 font. I was not aware that the kernel chooses a font depending on screen size. Can anyone confirm that this really is the case? If it really works that way and unless FS#65680 messes this up, then there's nothing to add to the Installation guide about this topic. -- nl6720 (talk) 06:02, 11 March 2020 (UTC)
As per the decision to use ter16x32 is not based on screen size but only resolution.So even though a 1080p screen may be hidpi it does not use ter16x32 M.Srikanth (talk) 10:17, 11 May 2020 (UTC)
At least that part is now clear, thanks. The first step should be to get HiDPI#Linux console up to date. After that, as I've said before, a tip for the installation guide can be drafted. -- nl6720 (talk) 11:04, 11 May 2020 (UTC)
I fixed the page and removed the template M.Srikanth (talk) 12:25, 11 May 2020 (UTC)

First mention of /mnt in example partition layout

/mnt is mentioned at mount point in Installation_guide#Partition_the_disks, while /mnt is made explicit two sections later in Installation_guide#Mount_the_file_systems. As I recall it, this was changed because some users blindly copy pasted commands and mounted /boot on the live system, instead of /mnt/boot. Some options:

  • Introduce another column describing the mount point on the installed system.
  • Actually explain /mnt early.
  • Revert the "mount point" to not include /mnt.

-- Alad (talk) 13:03, 7 September 2019 (UTC)

I don't understand what's the actual problem here... -- Lahwaacz (talk) 09:36, 8 September 2019 (UTC)
From what I read on #archlinux-wiki, this comes from where the user was confused by the lack of root mountpoint (i.e. /mnt vs /). A question could be raised, if we should concern ourselves with users who have strong opinions about the wiki content yet can't be bothered to propose improvements in the talk pages...
About Alad's proposed options: I disagree with the first option, I think it will just complicate things even further. I support the third option and maybe adjusting the column header like in Special:Diff/581800.
I'd actually would like to go even further and change the commands run from outside chroot to be visually distinct, e.g.:
root@archiso # mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt
I think it would better solve the underlying issue.
-- nl6720 (talk) 15:26, 8 September 2019 (UTC)
I'm not overly fond of the longer column name. For the last proposed option, I may agree if this is formalized in Help:Style, so that it is not specfic to the Installation guide. -- Alad (talk) 11:20, 10 September 2019 (UTC)
Adding it Help:Style was my intention, since other articles, too, will need to use that style for some commands. I'm thinking of creating a template for it: Special:Permalink/581945. -- nl6720 (talk) 10:19, 11 September 2019 (UTC)
Sounds good to me, I'd just prefer the regular (non-bold) font for the prompt as above. -- Alad (talk) 21:54, 13 September 2019 (UTC)
Special:Permalink/582327. Are there any other opinions about creating such a template? Or should I take this discussion to Help talk:Template per Help:Template#Creation? -- nl6720 (talk) 18:31, 14 September 2019 (UTC)
  1. How are you going to call the template? This template would probably add to the Help:Template#Code formatting templates series, should it be named in a consistent fashion?
  2. Should this template support custom prompts, and if so, should it be called "pc" (from "(custom) prompted" code)?
  3. I don't like the red color too much, if bold is not an option maybe we can go green|purple|blue, something that recalls less a warning of some kind? Or can we just leave it with the default font color? Or a slightly fainter black?
  4. I haven't looked well into it, but maybe we can instead add an optional argument to Template:bc and Template:hc that prefixes a custom (colored) prompt? I wouldn't see a problem with repeating "root@archiso #" in every instance, or we may derive the new template from those two at that point.
  5. The template should probably be derived from Template:bc in any case, for simpler code, see User:Kynikos/Template:Sandbox2.
-- Kynikos (talk) 17:36, 16 September 2019 (UTC)
  1. Initially I was going to call it Template:Archiso since it would be Archiso-specific, but I'm starting to think that creating a more general-purpose template would be better. It could then be used in PostgreSQL and the [postgres]$ convention would get formalized in Help:Style. Now the issue is the [user@peer-a]# in Template:hc used in WireGuard. I'd rather not create two new templates, but I'm having trouble getting Template:Sandbox to work :(
  2. I like your "Template:pc" suggestion.
  3. Be glad I didn't post my first draft that was slightly more colorful. From your offered colors, I'd choose purple.
  4. I'd rather not mess with the established templates just for this change, so I'd prefer creating a new template.
  5. I didn't even think about using Template:bc. Is it a good idea to do that? The new template might need to be updated if Template:bc is ever changed in an incompatible way.
-- nl6720 (talk) 07:33, 17 September 2019 (UTC)
Yeah, after viewing your attempts and looking into it myself, I think modifying bc/hc is out of discussion, it would add too much code/style for so little use.
Thinking about this again one day after, I feel I'm realizing that my concerns in general may descend from the fact that we're going to create a template to represent (block) code, even though we already have 2 which basically do the same thing, including allowing to include a prompt; the only addition of this "Archiso" or "pc" template would be the formatting around the prompt, so why not keep it simple (I know, "simplicity" is often subjective and controversial) and instead either make a Template:Archiso to be used like {{bc|{{Archiso}} mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt}} or Template:ps (or Template:PS) to be used like {{hc|{{ps|root@archiso #}} mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt}}? They also work with Template:hc and space-prefixed code blocks!
Putting the choice of color aside, if the above idea of a standalone prompt template isn't welcome, I think my second choice would be to make two Template:pbc and Template:phc that work like {{pbc|$|ls}} and {{phc|$|ls|...}}, with the style rule to use them only in case of complex prompts. I'd still derive them from bc/hc to inherit any changes that we'd decide to make to them, and avoid repeating that ugly <pre> hack even more.
Otherwise I give up and accept the Template:Archiso that works like {{Archiso|mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt}}, in the hope that one day we won't need an analogous "hc" version.
-- Kynikos (talk) 14:24, 17 September 2019 (UTC)
I can't say I really like the idea of {{bc|{{Archiso}} mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt}} or {{hc|{{ps|root@archiso #}} mount /dev/sdX1 /mnt}}. I'd prefer creating Template:pbc and Template:phc.
I still don't get what's wrong with Template:Sandbox. It should just work:
prompt # command
-- nl6720 (talk) 04:43, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
FWIW (and a bit of fun) I've fixed Template:Sandbox, although I'm not sure if we really need that level of automation ^^ I stick to my position above, is there a third (or more) opinion? -- Kynikos (talk) 15:48, 18 September 2019 (UTC)
I think you like the #800080 shade of purple, right? ;-) Lahwaacz (talk) 11:39, 21 September 2019 (UTC)
Yes, I do like that one :D but I think it would be too bright for this template. -- nl6720 (talk) 11:52, 21 September 2019 (UTC)

Changes for the base package

Installations without base

The base group was replaced with the base package: [10] This change was reflected in Installation_guide#Install_the_base_packages with [11]

With [12], I removed the sentence "We only officially support installations that have the base package installed." because it opens a new rabbit-hole when something is "officially supported" in the installation guide, is not. With this sentence included, pretty much anything (including "installations" that are not, or only partially, followed from the Installation guide) may be supported merely from having the base package installed.

On the other hand, some notion that removing the base package results in an installation that is "not Arch" makes sense, but we should discuss on the best approach on doing this. -- Alad (talk) 10:22, 6 October 2019 (UTC)

Buggy graphics driver

Can there be a hint that nomodeset parameter could be used if the graphics driver is buggy (I've heard nouveau may be buggy sometimes) M.Srikanth (talk) 04:47, 12 May 2020 (UTC)

Add a reference in <#Partition the disks> to EFI formatting

As is, there's no hint as to how to format the EFI partition in this section or in the links, so I suggest we add that this line, See EFI system partition#Format the partition. —This unsigned comment is by Ttoirrah (talk) 07:03, 15 May 2020 UTC. Please sign your posts with ~~~~!

Installation guide#Partition the disks has two links to the EFI system partition article. Did you perhaps mean Installation guide#Format the partitions? -- nl6720 (talk) 09:42, 15 May 2020 (UTC)

Add a reference to btrfs snapshots in <#Partition the disks>

new users may be unfamiliar with subvolumes, providing links to btrfs and snapper will point them in the right direction.

this is important because moving to btrfs snapshots afterwards will involve reformatting.

—This unsigned comment is by Edgeworth (talk) 02:12, 4 July 2020‎. Please sign your posts with ~~~~!

All file systems, including btrfs and its subvolumes, are unrelated to partitioning. The example layouts in the installation guide cover only swap [+ ESP] + the root partition, so if you decide later that you want to use a btrfs subvolume for e.g. /var, there is no need to change the partitions. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 08:39, 4 July 2020 (UTC)

but what if you wanted to have / be a subvolume? So a use case i could envision is:

  • creating a snapshot called @ and mounting it at /
  • another called @home and mounting that at /home
  • Another called @snapshots and mounting that at /.snapshots

this way you could use ‘’Timeshift’’ and ‘’Snapper’’

but, I may be mistaken, wouldn’t this be significantly easier to do before hand rather than after the fact? Maybe just a little bubble pointing users in the right direction, I say this because I only recently discovered btrfs and timeshift and I just never stumbled accross it, so making it more visible would have been very helpful.

Edgeworth (talk) 01:38, 5 July 2020 (UTC)Edgeworth

Btrfs subvolumes are created after formatting the file system not during disk partitioning. "Installation guide#Format the partitions" links to "File systems" which has a link to "Btrfs". If you want to recommend using subvolumes, add a tip to Btrfs#File system creation. -- nl6720 (talk) 14:09, 5 July 2020 (UTC)
ok that stands to reason, but the example in "Installation guide#Format the partitions" is ext4 and if a new user just has no idea about COW file systems like btrfs/zfs there’s a good chance that they will never discover it, atleast until after they’ve installed the system.
Perhaps a tip box near that example to suggest researching btrfs subvolumes and snapshots could be helpful? ideally with a link to Snapper#Suggested_filesystem_layout.
Snapshots are really helpful with a rolling release so i’d argue they should be encouraged.
Edgeworth (talk) 01:02, 6 July 2020 (UTC)Edgeworth
If the new user has no idea about COW file systems, there is a good chance that they have no idea about any type of file systems, so they should review the File systems page (which is linked from the section before showing the example with ext4) and select the file system they like. Adding file system-specific notes or even recommendations to the installation guide does not make sense - they should be placed in sections related to the subject, so that users of other file systems are not bothered with them. As noted, that's Btrfs#File system creation in this case - everybody who had initially no idea about COW file systems and who decides to use Btrfs must go through that section before installing their system. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 07:27, 6 July 2020 (UTC)
I agree that the bulk of the material should be on a dedicated page but there are many pages to read and only so much time in the day, perhaps a stronger recommendation to review the file system page then? perhaps saying something to the effect of “file systems such as ext4, btrfs, zfs and so on have various strengths and weaknesses, users are advised to read the file systems page before proceeding.”
the idea being that users new to linux, or just arch, get exposed to as many helpful things as possible just by going through the installation guide
Im sure there are users who know enough to get going that simply don’t realise that snapshots are a thing (i.e. there not on windows), but I wouldn’t say it’s fair to suggest they don’t know anything about file systems either.
anecdotally ive been using linux for nearly 10 years (arch for 3) and btrfs just never really came up on my radar until last year, i’m not a computer scientist so i never really went looking because I didn’t know it bought anything to the table and so if the installation guide pushed me in that direction I could have avoided a lot of grief by using snapshots.
Edgeworth (talk) 07:41, 6 July 2020 (UTC)Edgeworth

GitLab blobs in Lynx

Links to files (blobs) on are not readable in Lynx (or any other console web browser); see

Should the Installation guide link to raw files instead?

-- nl6720 (talk) 12:29, 4 August 2020 (UTC)

Maybe you could ask svenstaro to add it to -- Lahwaacz (talk) 12:36, 4 August 2020 (UTC)
It has been filed under nice to have. -- nl6720 (talk) 17:19, 4 August 2020 (UTC)

RAM usage

Attempting to boot the ISO with 532MB RAM (VM) and it hangs at attempting to mount the ISO. Changing RAM to 544MB allows the Arch ISO to boot, so I suspect the amount of RAM needed on the page isn't accurate. Beepboo (talk) 14:11, 17 August 2020 (UTC)

Updated again. Note that after installation the system can still easily get under 512 MB. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 14:05, 17 August 2020 (UTC)
Lahwaacz, it's missing fullstop "." in the end of this sentence. -- Josephgbr (talk) 23:49, 17 August 2020 (UTC)
Actually not missing (found it just now), but should it be after the reference link? -- Josephgbr (talk) 23:51, 17 August 2020 (UTC)
It's used the same way also in Installation guide#Select the mirrors. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 07:01, 18 August 2020 (UTC)
From what I've seen, most wiki pages use it the same way. -- nl6720 (talk) 07:52, 19 August 2020 (UTC)
There is actually an open discussion about this: Help talk:Style/Formatting and punctuation#Reference links before or after punctuation marks? -- Lahwaacz (talk) 08:05, 19 August 2020 (UTC)

Adjust Networking "Works out of the Box" Guidance

Hello, I installed Arch and had some trouble with the networking. I wrote an article about it:

The thing that tripped me up is that the networking from the LiveCD worked, and it had registered on me that networking should "work out of the box". When I did the `arch-chroot` it still worked. It didn't stop working until the reboot, and by then it was a Catch-22 to fix...and forced sifting through advice that was hard to interpret (and hard to test). I feel some changes to the wording and emphasis could greatly reduce potential problems.

For instance, where it says Connect to the Internet at the beginning, this could be more explicit as Check the LiveCD Internet Connection. The first sentences after that could be something like:

   "A connection is required to download the base system.  So the LiveCD is configured to try common network connections with `systemd`'s networking, which might work automatically.  But please note that later in the process, you will have to *manually* set up the network on your new installation partition--which does not come configured in the base system."

That would set expectations. In the later step that says Network Configuration, it currently starts by having you edit `/etc/hostname` and `/etc/hosts`. I think this minimizes the most important aspects of the step--because booting into a system with no network is kind of falling off a cliff in the process. Seems it would be better to open with something like:

   "The network connectivity being used for installation so far is only configured on the LiveCD, not the new base system on your partition.  This means that if you do not right now install and configure network management software, you will have NO network connectivity when you boot into your system.  You'll be unable to get files to solve the lack of connectivity with `pacman`, so you will have to reboot into the LiveCD again and `arch-chroot` to bring you back to this point to try again."

Networking is a crucial-enough ability that I think it would be worth it to have this section take a more active hand in guiding to making sure it works on that first reboot. (Or if it doesn't work, at least people know to snap back into the LiveCD with a mount and a chroot.) Helping people know what the actual next step is in the Network Configuration section seems important, and I don't think the current links give any sense of what that step should be. So expanding the section to summarize the user's obligations and anything they can do to confirm they've done it right before rebooting would help tremendously. AE1020 (talk) 02:31, 19 August 2020 (UTC)

There is no need to be this verbose, the installation guide is not a blog. The sentence "Complete the network configuration for the newly installed environment, that includes installing your preferred network management software." in Installation guide#Network configuration and the note in Installation guide#Connect to the internet are already pretty clear. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 06:57, 19 August 2020 (UTC)
I'm sure it could be less verbose. But even the minor tweaks I suggest like changing the section name to "Check the LiveCD Internet Connection" and removing the "should work out of the box" phrasing would aid in comprehension of the process as a whole. This reinforces to user they are not now done with "configure the internet" that "worked out of the box". I believe other adjustments could help without increasing the length...if that is a requirement. AE1020 (talk) 08:32, 19 August 2020 (UTC)
The guide does not use "LiveCD" anywhere, so why should it be in the title? Note that there is no "CD" anywhere, unless you actually burned the image on a CD, but that may not be the case for others. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 08:44, 19 August 2020 (UTC)
I see the phrase "live environment" is used, so it could be "check the live environment's net connection". AE1020 (talk) 08:52, 19 August 2020 (UTC)
I think Special:Diff/633954 should be enough for a clarification. Any more would be too excessive. -- nl6720 (talk) 10:36, 1 September 2020 (UTC)

Alter the test for Internet Connection

In the section "Boot the live environment", a note is mentioned about using ping to test an internet connection. During my first installation, I followed the guide and found trouble upon reaching the "Connect to the internet subsection".

I had tried three different connections; two different ethernet interfaces and one wireless interface. All three appeared to be working with each interface showing a state of "UP", being assigned an IP by DHCP, and drivers showing as loaded.

Though, upon issuing "ping", no packets were received. After spending hours looking through the forum, wiki articles and various websites and even altering the machine I intended to install to; I decided to try to ping a website from a machine that I knew had internet access. Still, neither ping nor traceroute would work. This indicates ICMP Packets are blocked by my router. I then ran the "Installation_guide" script and found that my Arch Iso indeed had an internet connection after all.

I think it would be a good idea to suggest accessing the Installation guide from the live iso rather than using ping. ICMP Packets are blocked by default on many consumer grade routers, and certainly on almost every enterprise network. It is far less likely that an HTTP request would be blocked, so I think this is a far better test for internet connection.

-Sunny73cr (talk) 10:58, 1 September 2020 (UTC)

Blocking incoming ICMP echo requests and unsolicited ICMP echo replies may be common, but blocking ICMP in general is not. That kind of connection may as well be considered broken. -- nl6720 (talk)

Boot issues faced when installing on modern machines.

One may encounter "Invalid signature" when trying to boot from the installation media on a machine with secure boot on and keys not cleared.

Also, after installing on a NVME SSD, one need to set the drive to AHCI mode instead of Intel Optimized (in bios configuring panel), otherwise you just can't boot into the system.

Sffred (talk) 00:05, 24 September 2020 (UTC) Sffred 1600905886

AHCI is a SATA controller operation mode, it shouldn't have anything to do with NVMe. You can add a section to Partitioning#Troubleshooting about changing the SATA mode if Linux doesn't see SATA disks, but make sure you're using the correct terms. -- nl6720 (talk) 06:27, 25 September 2020 (UTC)
Some motherboards support SATA over the M.2 port, which may be the source of this confusion. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 07:33, 25 September 2020 (UTC)
w:M.2#Storage interfaces lists "PCI Express using AHCI" as an option, but it's unclear if such a mode is actually implemented by any firmware, and even if it was, it should not be recommended as it would drastically reduce the drive's speed. From what I could find[13][14][15], it looks like manufacturers simply interpret "SATA mode" being set to "AHCI" on NVMe controllers to mean "use native operating mode without firmware RAID". -- nl6720 (talk) 08:33, 25 September 2020 (UTC)
While on the topic of SATA (and non-SATA) operating modes, any thoughts about the backup GPT header corruption warning in GPT fdisk#Convert between MBR and GPT? -- nl6720 (talk) 08:37, 25 September 2020 (UTC)
Sorry, I have no idea... -- Lahwaacz (talk) 10:57, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
I added a note about Secure Boot to Installation guide#Boot the live environment. If anyone's wondering why it says "installation images" then that's because of ipxe.efi (the EFI binary for Netboot). -- nl6720 (talk) 06:52, 28 September 2020 (UTC)