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Revision as of 16:25, 18 November 2012 by NicoSchottelius (talk | contribs)
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This page describes how to automatically configure archlinux using cdist.


Cdist is a configuration management system. The author of cdist is also using Archlinux as a target distribution and has some re-usable example configurations online.


Get the cdist repository with Nicos modications:


How to use the types

Edit cdist/conf/manifest/init, add your hostname and use the types as seen on the present hosts. Afterwards run

   ./bin/cdist config -v your-host-name

And then the your-host-name will be configured.

Type overview

The following types are present and have been tested on Archlinux systems.

Managed Desktop (__nico_managed_desktop)

This type is mainly focussed to create a computer usable by non-geeks.


  • User can shutdown, suspend the computer (pm-utils)
  • Graphical user login (slim)
  • LXDE Desktop environment
  • Office suite (Libreoffice)
  • Browser (chromium)
  • User can configure network (using wicd)

Notebook (__nico_notebook)

This is the highly personal tuned notebook configuration. Used every 2-3 years when changing the notebook. It contains everything necessary to work (highy biased opinion there).

Some features:

  • LaTeX, i3, mplayer, nfs, wireshark, ...

Dos gaming station (__nico_dosbox)

This type contains a dosbox installation + some sample games. If you don't know what dos is, you don't need this type.

Multimedia Support (__nico_media)

Ever searched for tool X to do multimedia action Y? It's probably included in here.


  • Image viewer
  • Image manipulation
  • Drawing
  • Video playback
  • CD/DVD backup