Recently, I began an exercise to learn how Linux works better. At the advice of my friends I took over one of my spare computers, and installed Arch Linux. My goal in installing Arch was to learn more about Linux.
Arch Linux was fairly easy to install, it takes more time to configure, than to install successfully. To start with I followed the Arch Beginner’s Guide. Once I got used to doing everything that an installer usually does I came to understand the process.
My goals were to have a fully functional install with EFI partitions. Getting the EFI partitions working took a while.
One point where I deviated from the beginner’s guide is that I used GParted to partition the hard drive before I started the process. I went through the process a couple of times with failure, because I was not able to get the vfat EFI boot partition setup correctly, with the command line tools. GParted helped me solve that issue.
Once I had a base system installed I found that I had a bare Linux that I then molded to what I wanted. In this case I did put on a cron, openssh, and xorg with Fluxbox. My goal was a lightweight gui. I also use the Rox Pinboard.
I still have some settings, like the sound (ALSA) to get working correctly, but I have a stable system otherwise.
My next steps are to get KVM working, then to create a VM with CentOS setup as a web and email server. I also want to create a virtual machine with either and old Windows install, ReactOS, or a DOS variant and create a BBS system.
All in all I like the Arch way of Linux, and I am contemplating moving on from other Linux distributions I have used in the past on my other machines.