This document will explain the guided installation steps for for installing Arch Linux. The guided installation is a script for guiding you through the Installation guide using the archinstall library. For alternative means of installation, see Category:Installation process.
- 1 Prerequisites
- 2 Installation steps
- 3 Limitations
- 4 Building ISO
This document assumes that you are using an official installation image. For other means of execution, see build instructions below.
During the guided installation, you will be prompted several questions. These questions or steps will be described in detail here. The examples below assumes you have two disk devices on your system,
/dev/sdb. In reality it does not matter to much, but it will keep the examples below simpler to explain.
Selecting a drive
The first step of the guided installation will ask you to select a drive to install to. It will look something similar to
0: /dev/loop0 (('570.3M', '/run/archiso/bootmnt/arch/x86_64/airootfs.sfs', None)) 1: /dev/sda (('250G', '/dev/sda', None)) 2: /dev/sdb (('512G', '/dev/sdb', None)) Select one of the above disks (by number or full path):
Here, some limited information about the drives are given, such as size and physical location. You can select the drive with a number (
1 would select
/dev/sda) or with the full path by writing
/dev/sda which would select
/dev/sdain this example)
Next step is optional and will allow you to select (or skip) a password for the disk encryption. We strongly recommend you enable it by specifying a password. But if you know the risks of not using disk encryption, you could leave the password blank which will skip encrypting the drive all together.
Enter disk encryption password (leave blank for no encryption): And one more time for verification:
The disk encryption uses luks2 with . The default options for luks2 are a key-size of 512, the default hash algorithm used is sha512 and the iter-time option is 10000 by default.
This step is optional, but might help identify your machine on the network later on. Setting a hostname will modify
/etc/hostname on the installed machine.
Desired hostname for the installation:
The default will be
Archinstall if left empty.
This next step is optional with a caveat. By default the Arch Linux
root account is disabled by the
/etc/shadow entry for
root being defined as
root:*:. You are encouraged to not set a password and thus leaving this step empty.
Enter root password (leave blank to leave root disabled): And one more time for verification:
Additional users to install
This step is optional only if a
root password was set in the previous step. Otherwise this step becomes mandatory followed by
sudo privileges being given to the first user created.
Any additional users to install (leave blank for no users): Password for user <username>: Enter password again for verification:
Arch_User_Repository can give you additional features that are outside of the officially supported package database. For new users this can be tricky to use intially. So in an attempt to ease the barrier to entry here as well, AUR can be optionally enabled by writing
yes, but the default is to skip this step. yay share common syntax with pacman and can install packages from the AUR Package Database.
Would you like AUR support? (leave blank for no): - AUR support provided by yay (https//aur.archlinux.org/packages/yay/)
Choosing a profile to install
Machines can have many use cases. archinstall ships a number of pre-configured profiles that you can choose from. Some examples of profiles include:
A new-user friendly desktop environment based on gnome, most similar to other distributions.
A minimal graphical environment based on the kde desktop environment (Will not install ).
A minimal graphical environment based on the gnome desktop environment (Will not install ).
A basic web-server based on nginx.
A minimal Arch Linux machine with docker pre-installed.
A minimal Arch Linux machine with postgresql installed and pre-configured.
Any particular profile you want to install:
Optionally you can supply a list (space separated) of packages to install after the base-installation is complete. These packages will be queued and installed as soon as the base operating system is installed.
Additional packages aside from base (space separated):
This installer is by no means a complete installation experience. The only way you will ever achieve a fully desirable installation experience is by manually installing all your needs. This installer is only meant to ease the barrier-to-entry for new users or quickly help set up machines for experienced users who can troubleshoot on their own.
The main limitations of the guided archinstall installer are:
- Guided installation does not support custom formatting layouts of drives (It will use the entire selected disk by default. The library does support it, but the guided installation does not).
- Relies on Systemd-boot as it's bootloader and not legacy-supporting alternatives like grub.
- Disk encryption parameters are not configurable outside of setting the password.
- Lack certain accessibility features (For among other things: color blindness, hearing impairment etc).
- Current and new profiles are constantly under development. Certain profiles might break unexpectedly as they are prioritized down if other bugs/features are escalated.
The build process for the official ISO containing archinstall uses the binarypackage. There are other packages such as that installs the source library, but it has as a dependency. The difference is that is a pre-compiled stand-alone binary of the library and thus doesn't require the entire Python runtime compiler to execute. On the other hand that limits the creativity and flexibility of creating a custom ISO image.
So odds are for your project, you'll need the
pip install archinstall at some point during the ISO build process.
Setup a archiso template
$ mkdir -p ~/archiso $ cp -r /usr/share/archiso/configs/releng/* ~/archiso/
relengconfiguration. Other templates might vary greatly.
Adding a custom mirror
This step is also covered in the Custom Local Repository, but for development versions of archinstall, adding the
https://archlinux.life mirror will enable the latest untested features. For this example, we will use a custom mirror.
Adding a custom remote mirror can be done by updating the build environments
[archlife] Server = https://archlinux.life/$repo/os/$arch SigLevel = Optional TrustAll
Adding required packages
As mentioned in the introduction to this section, the official ISO contains thebinary package. But for this example, we will choose .
Setting up auto-launch
We can create a
airootfs/etc/skel/.zprofile in the
~/archiso build environment to setup automatic command execution as long as the default shell is . The function of
airootfs is described in Archiso#Adding_files_to_image.
[[ -z $DISPLAY && $XDG_VTNR -eq 1 ]] && sh -c "python -m archinstall guided"
This will automatically launch python in modular mode, loading the module archinstall on the virtual terminal 1 during the boot of the ISO. In this mode, it will start a guided installation of archinstall.