Arch Linux ARM was started in 2009 as an optware-like distribution called PlugApps for the emerging plug computer market, followed shortly by a transition to being the first ARM port of the Arch Linux distribution supporting ARMv5 systems. By the end of 2010 a nearly complete port was available.
In mid-2011, the distribution was expanded with a port for hard-float ARMv7 and was renamed to Arch Linux ARM to better encompass the goals and direction of development. A third port for hard-float ARMv6 was added in 2012. An ARMv8 AArch64 port was added in 2015.
In 2022, support for the ARMv5 and ARMv6 architectures were discontinued. At this time, very little to no new hardware was being made with these architectures and the user base had shifted to ARMv7 and ARMv8 devices. ARMv7 also switched to building with the NEON FPU, which meant that support for the Marvell SoCs without support for NEON were also discontinued.
Arch Linux ARM continues the philosophy of Arch Linux into new architectures. As a port of the distribution, as opposed to a derivative, packages are released as-is with modifications made only to support building on ARM. A custom package build infrastructure brings new upstream Arch package releases to the four supported ARM architectures within hours of their release to x86 systems.
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