Follow along to install Arch Linux (tested on ThinkPad T530)
Flash a USB
Boot into the installation media
Common boot buttons include:
Connect to the internet
Ethernet/virtual machine does not require any extra setup. For wifi, you will use the
iwctl device list iwctl station [device] get-networks iwctl station [device] connect [network]
After the last command runs, you will be prompted to enter a password if the wifi network is private.
Note: If your network has multiple works, it must be enclosed in quotes.
You can test your connection by using the
ping command (for example,
Advanced: determine the boot mode
Check whether the
/sys/firmware/efi/efivars directory exists:
If the directory exists, the computer boots with UEFI. If the directory does not exist, it probably boots with BIOS.
Optional: update the system clock
timedatectl set-ntp true
Partition the drive
There are several options for partitioning the drive. You may use whichever you prefer; I suggest
cfdisk because it is a GUI. (Video reference)
The Arch Linux Installation Guide suggests using a root and a swap (> 512MiB) partition. If you are booting with UEFI, also create a boot partition.
Create a filesystem
mkfs.ext4 /dev/[root partition]
mkswap /dev/[swap partition]
Mount the partitions
mount /dev/[root partition] /mnt swapon /dev/[swap partition]
Install essential packages
pacstrap /mnt base linux linux-firmware neovim
Note: You can choose other text editors in place of neovim. If you do so, use that editor instead of
nvim for the remainder of the tutorial.
genfstab -U /mnt >> /mnt/etc/fstab
Change root into the new system
Set the timezone
ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/[continent or country]/[city] /etc/localtime
ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/America/Chicago /etc/localtime
Note: to see available continents, run
ls /usr/share/zoneinfo/. Likewise, to see available cities, run
Uncomment the locales you wish to use (if you are not sure, just uncomment the line with
echo "LANG=[locale]" >> /etc/locale.conf
echo "LANG=en_US.UTF-8" >> /etc/locale.conf
echo [hostname] >> /etc/hostname
# /etc/hosts 127.0.0.1 localhost ::1 localhost 127.0.1.1 [hostname].localdomain [hostname]
Set the root password
Install useful programs
To be honest, I am not sure what every one of these is for, but I tried installing Arch without them and ran into problems.
pacman -S networkmanager network-manager-applet dialog wireless_tools wpa_supplicant os-prober mtools dosfstools base-devel linux-headers
Install a boot loader
Look up which boot loader is correct for the computer. I use
grub for a ThinkPad T530. This step may be different depending on what hardward is being used. Do your own research to make sure you install a working boot loader.
pacman -S grub grub-install --target=i386-pc /dev/sda grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg
Exit and reboot
exit umount -a reboot