Home Tutorial How to install Arch Linux: a complete tutorial

How to install Arch Linux: a complete tutorial

An always updated and easy to follow guide.


How to create bootable USB drive for Arch Linux

We will create a bootable installation media of Arch Linux that we will use to install Arch on our machine.

Download the latest ISO of Arch Linux.

Plug in a USB drive into your system. Find the block device name of the drive with ‘lsblk’ command.


Look at the storage capacity of each device to identify the USB drive you want to use as installation media. If you can’t identify it, unplug the drive and run the ‘lsblk’ command. Now plug the drive and run the command again. Compare the output of the command, with and without USB drive plugged in, to see identify the new block device that showed up after plugging the USB flash. That’s your device.

Use the ‘dd’ command to write the image to the USB flash drive:

sudo dd if=/path_to_arch_.iso of=/dev/sdX bs=1M

Replace ‘sdX’ with your block device, in my example it’s ‘sde’.

sudo dd if=/home/swapnil/Download/archlinux-2016.12.01-dual.iso of=/dev/sde bs=1M

Once the ISO has been successfully written to the USB Flash drive, edit the BIOS settings of the target computer (where you will be installing Arch Linux) and configure it to boot from the removable drive. If your system has secure boot, please disable it.

Plug your bootable Arch Linux USB Flash drive into the target PC and boot it. If everything does well, you should boot into Arch Linux boot screen. Choose ‘Boot Arch Linux (x86_64)’ from the list. It will open a command line interface.

We will be downloading all packages from the Internet to install our system. We need working network so we can connect to the Internet. If you have Ethernet cable, I will recommend using it to eliminate the complexity of setting up the wireless network. If you don’t have a wired connection, read up. Just one caveat: I am assuming that your system has well supported wireless card; otherwise you will have to install drivers manually and covering all of those is beyond the scope of this article.

Let’s run ‘ifconfig’ or ‘ip link’ command that will list all network devices.
# ip link

Note down the name of the device you want to use. Wired devices will start with something like ‘en’ whereas wireless devices will start with ‘wl’. In my case wired device was ‘enp0s3’ and wireless devices was ‘wlp2s0’.

Run the following command to set-up the wireless device (replace wlp2s0 with the name of your wireless devices)

# wifi-menu -o wlp2s0

Use arrow keys on your keyboard to select the wireless network you want to connect to and click OK (tip: mouse won’t work in the command line, hit enter or use the ‘Tab’ key to highlight the ‘Ok’ button and hit enter).

The next window will give you the option to change the name, leave it as it is. Enter the wireless password in the third window. You should be connected. Let’s ping Google to see if we are connected:

# ping  -c 3 www.google.com

If you get output, congrats you are connected. It’s time to proceed.

  • Mark Hewitt

    Is the line “arch-chroot /mnt/bin/bash” meant to have a space? i.e. “arch-chroot /mnt /bin/bash”

  • Swapnil Bhartiya

    arch-chroot /mnt

    Thanks. Corrected.

  • Mark

    Once chroot-ed, the system does not find nano – says bash: nano: command not found

  • Swapnil Bhartiya

    How did you chroot?

  • Mark

    As you have it on the web page, but with the error (below) corrected, so “arch-chroot /mnt /bin/bash” grateful for any help. thanks,

  • Swapnil Bhartiya


    arch-chroot /mnt

  • Ken Golden

    Thanks for a great guide!

  • Robert Fairbairn

    The instruction “pacman -S iw wpa_supplicant dialog” fails because I an offline, not having configured a wireless network after booting into the new installation. Wifi-menu won’t run without dialog. Would plug in wired but no port on this computer so any suggestions? Other than rebuild install profile adding dialog and start over?

  • bhartiyarules2017

    Thanks. I have edited the article and added the command to install it before they reboot. However, you can plug in the arch USB, chroot again and install from it. You don’t have to reinstall Arch. If you need help, ping me on Google+ or Twitter and I will assist.

  • ptrkjaneg

    Hi @arnieswap:disqus I followed your GREAT guide and I had only a small problem. systemd network manager service was disabled (or not enabled). Not a big problem (for an almost advanced user), but maybe you can add a line in the guide in order to active it for beginners users. I don’t know if is only a problema occurred on my pc, but it has happend.

  • Adam Jarosz

    “mkpart part-type fs-type start end” === “fs-type invalid token”

  • Swapnil Bhartiya

    That’s just example: replace it with actual values.

  • fintara

    Could you put clickable table of contents, would be helpful 🙂 Thanks for the article!

  • netdesk

    Hi Swapnil! Your article is always a starting point for my Arch installations. Thanks for the great work! I stuffed things together some time ago in a couple of scripts on github, just wanted to let you know about them: https://github.com/netdesk/arch-linux-setup


  • Guy Abeho

    Thank you for the amount of effort you put into this article. After 2 days struggling to get it work, i finally got arch to install thanks to this article