Difference between revisions of "Talk:Installation guide"

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(ArchWiki link: rm closed)
(/etc/locale.conf needs to be created: rm closed)
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::::That looks good to me. -- [[User:Lahwaacz|Lahwaacz]] ([[User talk:Lahwaacz|talk]]) 14:57, 28 August 2018 (UTC)
::::That looks good to me. -- [[User:Lahwaacz|Lahwaacz]] ([[User talk:Lahwaacz|talk]]) 14:57, 28 August 2018 (UTC)
== <s>/etc/locale.conf needs to be created</s> ==
The area needing a correction is [[Installation guide#Localization]].
The instructions tell you to set variables in the /etc/locale.conf file, but the file doesn't exist unless the user creates it. If the user needs to '''create''' the file, it should be explicitly explained with that language just as it is explained for the hostname file in [[Installation guide#Network configuration]] area. "'''Create''' the hostname file:"
For '''Localization''', I propose we add the verbiage ''Create the locale.conf file: /etc/locale.conf''
[[User:Schlitzkrieg|Schlitzkrieg]] ([[User talk:Schlitzkrieg|talk]]) 18:52, 28 September 2018 (UTC)
:[https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php?title=Installation_guide&diff=568604&oldid=565601] -- [[User:Alad|Alad]] ([[User talk:Alad|talk]]) 18:09, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
== fstab ==
== fstab ==

Revision as of 12:28, 19 March 2019

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)

Network configuration

dhcpcd for installed environment

How about we add a sentence to Installation_guide#Network_configuration describing how to restore use of dhcpcd as done on the installation medium? That way if the connection already worked on installation people only need a brief look at dhcpcd. -- Alad (talk) 15:48, 27 May 2018 (UTC)

I think that would just hide the possibility of choice from users. Maybe just say that dhcpcd is not enabled on the installed system without recommending anything. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 17:34, 27 May 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)

Network Configuration -- WiFi discussion

I'm starting a new thread seeing as the last one took a different direction and never really got resolved.

As it stands, the current instructions for the installation guide make it challenging for users who need to connect to the internet via a Wireless connection rather than wired. The Installation_guide#Connect_to_the_Internet section essentially assumes the users are using a wired connection, and to test it with a ping. Otherwise, they are directed to the Network_configuration page. Unfortunately, that page does not provide clear instructions for new users (or even those who just want to do a quick connection) to establish a connection via wireless. Equally so, should users find their way to the Wireless_network_configuration page, there is some digging to do there in order to find instructions to setup a connection. These are currently using the iw command, which may prove to be challenging to some. I see a few different possible solutions to improve the user experience:

  • Add explicit instructions to the installation guide
    • This is not ideal, as it adds another place to maintain likely duplicate information
  • Add a reference to the Wireless_network_configuration page
    • This is better, though the page would likely need a new section, or some tweaking to allow users to more easily find the information they need to get setup
  • Add new/better instructions to the Network_configuration page
    • This may also prove to be tricky, seeing as that page is already fairly monolithic, and focuses mostly on wired connections

One other consideration (of which I also don't see any progress) is the discussions revolving around moving and breaking down the Network Configuration guides, to separate Wired and Wireless content. With this move I could see such instructions being provided there. In any case, the guide should provide instructions that are:

  • Easy to follow, particularly for new users
  • Puts no emphasis on persisting configurations, as this is not applicable during the install phase
  • Offers options (choice is King)

--CubeTheThird (talk) 23:47, 26 August 2018 (UTC)

The Wireless network configuration link was removed because it cannot be used independently of Network configuration. I propose the following:
  1. Implement Talk:Network configuration#Moving Ethernet-specific sections to Wired subpage. Network configuration currently isn't straightforward. The actual setup instructions are hidden in the Network management section and it's confusing that wireless has a subpage but wired and medium-agnostic configuration are mixed together. See my demo.
  2. Have the Connect to the Internet section only link Network configuration and move the dhcpcd udev rule note there.
  3. Move Wireless network configuration to Network configuration/Wireless and move its iw section to a dedicated article because since recently we also have iwd.
The result should be more user-friendly without duplicating content.
--Larivact (talk) 07:13, 27 August 2018 (UTC)
As for your demo, note that in Talk:Network_configuration#Ongoing_rewrite, Alad said: "ping is one of the very first commands a new user has to run on installation to verify the availability of an internet connection". So unless you intend to direct users from the installation guide directly to the Network configuration#Troubleshooting section, there is still some more thinking to be done... -- Lahwaacz (talk) 07:21, 28 August 2018 (UTC)
Well then let's keep Connect to the Internet and revise it:

The installation image has a udev rule that enables the dhcpcd service for Ethernet network interfaces on boot. If you use Ethernet, verify the connection with ping:

# ping archlinux.org

If the ping fails see Network configuration#Troubleshooting. If you want to use Wi-Fi or a static IP address, stop the dhcpcd service with systemctl stop dhcpcd@interface where the interface name can be tab-completed and proceed with Network configuration.

--Larivact (talk) 08:41, 28 August 2018 (UTC)
That looks good to me. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 14:57, 28 August 2018 (UTC)


The section about generating the fstab with genfstab mentions -U and -L options but not the possibility to use GPT identifiers PARTUUID and PARTLABEL with the '-t' option. Those are described in Persistent block device naming and are a better choice for some users. genfstab itself doesn't explicitly list the GPT options either so IMHO it would be helpful to add this info here.

—This unsigned comment is by Grmat (talk) 15:12, 9 October 2018‎. Please sign your posts with ~~~~!

In that case you should open a bug / file a patch such that genfstab does list these options. The wiki shouldn't make up for missing basic documentation in distribution tools. -- Alad (talk) 17:49, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

Wording in example layout table and size of EFI partition

Wording in example layout table

Regarding Installation_guide#Example_layouts:

even if many users will understand remainder of the device as what is left after size of /dev/sdx1 and /dev/sdx3 are subtsructed from the size of the device, I think the order of the table might be confusing for some. Some people might set /dev/sdx2 to the size of the device minus size of /dev/sdx1, and then stumbled at where from 512 MiB, or larger, are to be found for /dev/sdx3. Either suggest the swap space as /dev/sdx2 and / as /dev/sdx3, or better explain the meaning of the remainder of the device for sdx2. Regid (talk) 14:05, 29 December 2018 (UTC)

Using /dev/sdx2 for swap is questionable, it doesn't emphasize that swap is optional nor is it consistent with other articles like dm-crypt/Encrypting an entire system. If you have some better explanation for "remainder of the device" feel free to propose it. -- Alad (talk) 08:55, 30 December 2018 (UTC)
I was trying to say that a user that patitions his HD by following the table might do the following: look at first row in the table, and creates the EFI partition. Than continue with the 2nd row. So he creates a partition at the remainder of his HD. Now he comes to the 3rd row: where will he get 512 MiB, or larger? As for dm-crypt/Encrypting an entire system, I might be wrong thinking that each partition is considered a separate device, so it doesn't matter if the swap space is before, or after, the / partition. Regid (talk) 12:41, 30 December 2018 (UTC)
Perhaps call it "Principal part of the device" instead. NB the term "remainder of the device" is often used for a separate /home in other articles. --Indigo (talk) 21:33, 3 February 2019 (UTC)

Size of EFI partition

Moved to Talk:EFI system partition#Size_of_EFI_partition. -- Alad (talk) 17:40, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

Example layouts section

There are several things I don't like in the current Installation guide#Example layouts section.

  • BIOS/GPT & BIOS/MBR is merged in one example. This is bound to lead to unnecessary confusion, since, for example, there is no BIOS boot partition for MBR. I suggest omitting BIOS/GPT since not all firmware support it (due to being unsupported by Windows). Then the GRUB-specific partition doesn't need to be listed.
  • Column title "Partition type (GUID)". If the GUIDs (and IDs for MBR) are omitted for simplicity, then the column should not mention them.
  • The Discoverable Partitions Specification is not used on GPT.
  • The suggested size for /, "Remainder of the device", could be replaced with the required minimum. Partitioning suggests 23-32 GiB, so how about 32 GiB.
  • The suggested size of ESP doesn't match the recommended size from EFI system partition#Create the partition.
  • gdisk is not mentioned or linked (it doesn't share an wiki article with fdisk anymore) even once in the Installation guide. It could be added to the note below the tables.
  • Without Template:ic around the mount points and partitions, they look awful.

I presume that, unlike Partitioning#Example layouts, the examples should be as simple as possible, so, I propose the following examples.

-- nl6720 (talk) 07:37, 28 January 2019 (UTC)

There is no "required minimum" on the root partition. Saying something like 32 GiB would make Arch exclusive to bare metal installations or virtual machines with a large image size. If anything, the "remainder of the device" wording should be improved, as already discussed elsewhere. -- Alad (talk) 18:02, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
Added a mention of gdisk to fdisk: [7]. I don't want to add it here, as it won't make much difference and there's already enough choices to make on installation. -- Alad (talk) 18:00, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
I don't think linking to gdisk from fdisk's intro is appropriate, similar software & alternatives are already listed in related articles box. My complaint was specifically about there being no link to gdisk from the Installation guide. -- nl6720 (talk) 08:56, 14 March 2019 (UTC)
The point stands though: gdisk was written because fdisk originally lacked GPT support, which fdisk now does since 2012. So there's hardly any point in linking gdisk from the install guide, and anyone who for some reason is not satisfied with fdisk can take the extra step and click the link to gdisk in the fdisk article.
Generally, trying to mention each and every single choice, regardless of their equivalence or relevance, is just cumbersome and brings nothing to those reading the guide. -- Alad (talk)
I guess /dev/sdX2 being root in both examples is the reason for keeping the current "BIOS with MBR or GPT" example. I don't really have a solution for this. The wiki's usage of /dev/sdXY will need to be addressed sooner or later due to the naming scheme of NVME disks.
Re Special:Diff/565508: There's no maximum for the ESP, so how about "At least 256 MiB". -- nl6720 (talk) 09:00, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
I agree with the simpler examples. To make the numbering work out I propose to simplify the example commands in Installation guide#Format the partitions, it's hard to cater to users who have never mounted a drive or created a directory anyway.
Regarding the partition sizes, note that the column says "suggested size" instead of "maximum" or "minimum" size. (256 MiB is not the strict minimum either, especially for /efi as mount point.) As such the existing 256-512 MiB suggestion for ESP looks reasonable to me. -- Alad (talk) 18:54, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
[8] -- Alad (talk) 19:06, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
My issue with "256–512 MiB" is that the EFI system partition#Create the partition recommendation "550 MiB" is outside that range. -- nl6720 (talk) 19:39, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
This was (is?) discussed in #Wording_in_example_layout_table_and_size_of_EFI_partition -- Alad (talk) 19:43, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Hmm, I see. FAT32 & 512+ MiB are used due to to firmware bugs, but the example suggests a range that includes a size smaller than 512 MiB so it's ineffective for that purpose. The main issue for me is that readers will see "conflicting information" with 256–512 MiB in the Installation guide and 550 MiB in other articles (just in case, I'm not suggesting to change the other articles). No one is going to think that the "Suggested size" is just a suggestion and not a hard limit. -- nl6720 (talk) 20:10, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Added an accuracy notice to EFI_system_partition#Create_the_partition. As to the "No one is going to think that ...", I see no proof of that. -- Alad (talk) 18:06, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

Example layouts section draft

Mount point Partition Partition type Suggested size
/mnt /dev/sdX1 Linux At least 32 GiB
[SWAP] /dev/sdX2 Linux swap More than 512 MiB
Mount point Partition Partition type Suggested size
/boot or /mnt/efi /dev/sdX1 EFI system partition 550 MiB
/mnt /dev/sdX2 Linux x86-64 root (/) At least 32 GiB
[SWAP] /dev/sdX3 Linux swap More than 512 MiB
  • Use fdisk or parted, or gdisk (GPT only) to modify partition tables. For example fdisk /dev/sdX.
  • Swap space can be set on a swap file for file systems supporting it.

See Partitioning#Example layouts for more detailed and advanced examples.

Reword locale section that it is clear that not uncommenting en_US will lead to issues

In the unofficial Telegram group we get people at least weekly that have some issue that goes back to not uncommenting en_US.

There needs to be added emphasis on the AND or simply explained that en_US is the default that apps expect, and will otherwise crash or malfunction.

Current: Uncomment en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8 and other needed locales in /etc/locale.gen, and generate them with:

Proposed: Uncomment en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8, which is needed for many programs to work, and also other needed locales in /etc/locale.gen, and generate them with:

C0rn3j (talk) 13:53, 11 February 2019 (UTC)

Uncommenting locales which will never be used does not make sense. Obviously, it is the point of locales to let users configure something else than en_US, so if something crashes without en_US, it is not a configuration problem.
In any case, the installation guide will not change based on some vague claims which others cannot read on.
-- Lahwaacz (talk) 20:43, 12 February 2019 (UTC)


For me the first thing I wanna do is connect to the new server by SSH! Then I can copy/paste commands, sit at my own workplace with multiple screens, and access the wiki and Google etc etc etc. Am I really the only one? Or does the majority really sit in front of their new linux box with a seperate monitor, keyb and mouse? I would be surprised! Please add, as one of the very first sections, how to enable SSH: -passwd -systemctl start sshd.service

Then you can start to configure and continue the installation :-) —This unsigned comment is by MrCalvin (talk) 23:35, 20 February 2019 (UTC). Please sign your posts with ~~~~!

All of that is already explained in the Install from SSH article. -- nl6720 (talk) 08:45, 21 February 2019 (UTC)

Boot loader installation

Installation guide#Boot loader doesn't say to install a boot loader, it only refers to a list of them. How about adding something like "Choose and install at least one boot loader."? -- nl6720 (talk) 19:46, 14 March 2019 (UTC)

At least one? -- Alad (talk) 21:09, 14 March 2019 (UTC)
Might not be the most common scenario, but it's possible to use one boot loader for BIOS booting and another for UEFI booting. E.g. rEFInd for UEFI booting + Syslinux for BIOS booting. If that use case is too uncommon to be mentioned then just add "Choose and install a boot loader.". -- nl6720 (talk) 21:31, 14 March 2019 (UTC)