Arch Handbook

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This handbook has only just been started. It's currently a rather bare outline. Please edit it and make it better! Look at the FreeBSD Handbook as a style guide.

Most sections should be a summary, with a link to the main article on the subject.

Getting Started


Arch linux is a lightweight and flexible linux distribution that tries to Keep It Simple. There are official packages optimized for the i686 and x86-64 architectures. There is also a community-operated package repository. See the pages in this category

Installing Arch Linux

Short installation text, link to the full guide.

Linux Basics

A few basics on the file system and command line, for people starting Unix/Linux with Arch.

Installing Software: Pacman

Some basics on Pacman options, how repositories work, etc.

Pacman is the Archlinux package management tool. It is a command line tool which provides an easy way to install and manage applications, libraries and other software. It is extremely easy to use and powerful, and will be one of the main administrative tools you will use while running Archlinux.

To get a list of operations pacman can perform, open a terminal and type:

pacman --help

To get more detail on an operation, combine it with --help:

pacman --help -S

Or, for a more in-depth guide, consult the man page:

man pacman

See the wiki entry for pacman for a user-friendly guide.

X11 and Graphical Desktop Environments

Basics of X11 concepts, installation and configuration of Gnome, KDE, etc.

Common Tasks

Desktop Applications

Web browsers, office suites, etc.


Video players, music jukeboxes, photo management, how to get codecs.


CUPS installation and configuration, finding drivers.

System Administration

Configuration and Tuning

Details on some common configuration (init, cron).

Users and Basic Account Management

Creating and managing users with command-line utilities.


Network Configuration

How networks are set up in Arch.


Mail, web, SSH server installation and configuration.


Basic firewall concepts, how to use iptables.