For these next steps, we're going to assume that you're logged in as your main user, who has
sudo permissions enabled.
Install some networking tools, so we may be able to go online later. NetworkManager is used by most desktop environments to manage network connections, and can be used in the console as well via
sudo pacman -S networkmanager sudo systemctl enable NetworkManager
nmtui to go online right now using your wifi.
# Try it out sudo systemctl start NetworkManager # Connect to a wifi nmtui
This should be enough to get most laptops online. For some others, you may need to install wireless drivers. For instance, MacBooks require Broadcom wireless drivers.
Next: Let's install some apps.
Install a browser. Choose from any of these options (or all!). Chromium is the open-source version of Google Chrome.
pacman -S \ chromium \ firefox
Install some basic fonts. ttf-croscore are Chrome OS fonts. You can install more fonts later from the AUR, but we'll get to that later.
pacman -S \ noto-fonts \ noto-fonts-emoji \ ttf-croscore \ ttf-roboto
Next: Let's install some drivers.
(Optional) You can install an older version of the Linux kernel if you feel the latest kernel may be too bleeding-edge for you.
pacman -S linux-lts
Depending on your setup, you may also need to install an xf86 driver. See this search for available drivers.
# If you're using ATI: pacman -S xf86-video-ati # If you're using Intel: pacman -S xf86-video-intel # ...see the list of packages to # find one that might be appropriate # for your setup!
Next: Let's install a desktop environment.
You'll need to install a desktop environment and a display manager. You can choose between
gnome (default for Ubuntu),
cinnamon (default for Mint),
plasma and many others. I recommend GNOME.
Install a desktop environment and a display manager. GNOME is a good first choice; it's the default of the Ubuntu desktop, and is a great desktop environment overall. GDM is the GNOME Display Manager.
# Install gdm and gnome pacman -S \ gdm \ gnome
Start the GDM service right now. This should get you to a graphical login screen! You can log in with your user here and get to a desktop environment.
# Start the GDM display manager sudo systemctl start gdm
If you were able to log into a desktop environment in the previous step, congratulations! Open a terminal and enable the
gdm service to start it up on every boot up.
# Enable GDM on startup sudo systemctl enable gdm
Next: Let's set up your swap file.
If you skipped creating a swap partition like I recommended, you can use systemd-swap to manage your swap.
sudo pacman -S systemd-swap
Edit the config. I recommend setting
1 (compressed RAM) and
(auto-managed swap files).
# Enable `zram_enabled=1` and `swapfc_enabled=1` sudo vi /etc/systemd/swap.conf
Start and enable
# Start it now sudo systemctl start systemd-swap # Enable it on every reboot sudo systemctl enable systemd-swap
Add your swapfile to
/etc/fstab so it'll be used on every boot.
# Edit your fstab partitions sudo vim /etc/fstab
# add this to the end: /swapfile none swap defaults 0 0
Next: What is the Arch User Repository?
The AUR, or Arch User Repository, contains a lot of community-maintained packages that you won't find in the official repositories. This ranges from proprietary non-free packages (like NVidia drivers). For most Arch users, the AUR is their reason to use Arch Linux, so I highly recommend installing an AUR helper.
You'll need an AUR helper to install packages from the AUR. I recommend yay.
# Go to your home folder cd # Make and install `yay` git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/yay.git cd yay makepkg -si
After it's installed, you can use it just like how you would use
yay packagename # search for a package to install yay -S packagename # install a package yay # check system for updates
Next: What can I install from the AUR?