Where can I get a system image from?

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Where can I get a system image from?

Postby mariosangiorgio » Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:03 pm

I used to be able to get an Arch Linux system image for my Raspberry PI on the download page of their official website.

Unfortunately Arch Linux is not linked anymore in that page.
Is there any reason why it happened?
Where can I get system image from?
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby mariosangiorgio » Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:08 pm

I just find the link to the system image: http://archlinuxarm.org/os/ArchLinuxARM ... est.tar.gz

So now my question is just why it got removed from the Raspberry PI web page
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby pepedog » Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:35 pm

Maybe you should ask them. We (archlinuxarm) never removed it
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby jvstech » Sun Oct 26, 2014 9:18 pm

The Raspberry Pi software team removed Arch from their download site because the rootfs-based release is almost impossible to install for beginners -- especially those on Windows and OSX -- and they were getting inundated with complaints. It's still available on NOOBS, though. The decision to switch to rootfs and no longer release raw disk images is an Arch ARM one.

pepedog, any word on bringing back a .img based version?
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby WarheadsSE » Mon Oct 27, 2014 1:36 pm

We're not going to do it.
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby jvstech » Tue Oct 28, 2014 4:13 am

Any particular reason why? Or is it really because of the difference in update schedules?
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby kmihelich » Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:06 am

The long delay in getting them to update images is an issue and has been since they showed up. We update at least monthly and they have always updated what they host on their own schedule, regardless of how many times we have asked. Typically, the image gets updated only after they have made some change to the firmware to support something new that they want all images to support out of the box, and the image needs to be updated yesterday. Worth noting that this did not seem to apply to their Debian image, which they had no issue updating more often while leaving ours at the same version, despite newer images residing on our mirrors.

It has also been over a year since they said they would implement a system in which special tarballs we already create and provide them would be spun into standalone dd images as well as integrated into NOOBS. This was supposed to be an automatic process whereby we could push updates to them on our schedule, and the changes would be reflected soon after. This has still not happened, they are still doing things manually, and have given no indication they will ever complete this project. In addition, they refused to simply link to our mirrors for download claiming that it was impossible. In contrast, I wrote our automated tarball image build system in my free time over a weekend, which produces 30 customized installations across three different CPU architectures targeting over 50 platforms. They are a for-profit company with full-time employees, needing only to target one platform, one architecture, and create maybe 6 different images in the end using source tarballs given to them, built to their specification, and ready to use with no manual intervention. We are already doing far more for their platform than any other we support. They have the resources, there is no excuse at this point.

Moving to a tarball aligns the platform with all other installation methods we provide for every other system, and allows for the easiest customization of installations by users along with easing our maintenance load and further unifying instructions. Let's not forget our own inundation of complaints that the dd image didn't use the entire SD card, or that a user did not wish to use ext4, or any other myriad of issues that are solved when you have direct control over how you install.

Any Linux or OSX computer will be able to create an SD card following the instructions, as they both provide the requisite tools. If partitioning, formatting, and unpacking a tarball is an "impossible" task, Arch is simply not the right distribution for you. As our front page has always said, which mirrors the Arch philosophy, we target and accommodate competent Linux users.
Arch Linux ARM exists and continues to grow through community support, please donate today!
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby jvstech » Tue Oct 28, 2014 6:05 am

Roger. Thanks for the info.

I didn't mean to imply the RPI foundation was faultless in this -- I was simply repeating what I had seen mentioned by them.

The only thing I will say is that having a disk image is a godsend for emulation purposes, and that is where my personal interest lies. Like you mentioned, I've been able to do what I need via a Linux VM on my primary development machine, but a "nice-to-have" would be a pre-built disk image.

A tarball release is certainly easier to edit and customize beforehand, so I'll just stick with my set up.
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby mlowijs » Tue Nov 11, 2014 8:44 am

I'm not sure the Foundation not updating their download page is a valid reason to not provide .imgs anymore, in my opinion... As a non-desktop-*nix user (which I'm sure I'm not the only one), I now have to boot into a Linux live distro to write Arch to an SD card, or setup a Linux virtual machine, which I may not even be able to passthrough my SD card reader to. I'd like to say I'm competent enough to install Arch (since I've done it on regular x86 machines before), but I'm now basically out of a quick way to install Arch for my RPis.

I can see this way of distributing is more in line with the rest of the distributions you provide for other systems, but surely it's not that difficult to automate the process of creating .imgs?
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Re: Where can I get a system image from?

Postby Socaltom » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:27 pm

Just to jump in where I'm probably not needed.... As a non-desktop linux user and reading this thread, I wonder if maybe the answer is to buy a $15 refurbished pogoplug, so you have something to create images from. ( or maybe just use instead of the RPi). The RPi got a lot of press when it came out, but it seems to me there are better systems out there.
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