What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

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What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby TroubledTuna » Sun Aug 11, 2019 7:58 pm

I have just installed Arch Arm to a Raspberry Pi 2

As some may be aware I had a few bumps getting there but a day or so ago I managed to install Arch to my SDcard (while probably quite trivial for most, this was a real personal achievement for me).

My intention is to learn as much about Arch as I can and have a computer I can tinker with and break (which I will do, as I'm beyond slow/daft) without damaging my actual computer.

So, I'd like to install a working display, something that isn't just the command line (I figured that would be a good thing to learn first)

I checked the Wiki for Arch Linux Arm (herehttps://archlinuxarm.org/platforms/armv7/broadcom/raspberry-pi-2) but all it says is;

The X.org driver for Raspberry Pi can be installed with the xf86-video-fbdev or xf86-video-fbturbo-git package.


I installed them but I'm not sure what next to do? Or is this even the wisest thing to learn first?

So far I've installed "mc" and "elinks" and that's super fun, having a somewhat CLI?-based (is this the correct term?) UI for my computer - are there any UI's that primarily work like "elinks" and "mc"? Anything else you can suggest? :)

My question, in a nutshell is, in the pursuit of useful learning, starting with easier more interesting stuff for my own sake, what should I do, where and how do I go about learning what I can install on my Raspberry Pi 2 and what do you guys suggest?

Thanks for any and all of your time :)
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby graysky » Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:24 pm

Just install a DE which should pull the needed dependencies. XFCE4 is a good choice.
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby xqdzn » Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:36 pm

If by working display you mean GUI, try this:
https://www.zybuluo.com/yangxuan/note/344907#4desktop
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby TroubledTuna » Sun Aug 11, 2019 9:02 pm

graysky wrote:Just install a DE which should pull the needed dependencies. XFCE4 is a good choice.


What would the best way of doing this be? Just following the AuR on Arch? I'd actually prefer to install i3-wm so, that being the case would I just follow the i3wm Arch Wiki page?

Thanks for your input, if all else fails I'll try just installing XFCE4 :)
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby TroubledTuna » Sun Aug 11, 2019 9:02 pm

xqdzn wrote:If by working display you mean GUI, try this:
https://www.zybuluo.com/yangxuan/note/344907#4desktop


Thank-you very much, next time I'm free I'll give this a look/go! :D
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby Lander1979 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:47 am

First Installation steps I took were to follow the ArchLinuxARM Install wikki to the letter. Getting this right is important as it will affect everything else down the track (like user permissions which are truncated by tar causing file access escalation issues; like needing to run ping as a super user, and disk RW acces issues when setting up/changing users home directories).

These instructions are here; https://archlinuxarm.org/platforms/armv ... berry-pi-2

For the longevity of this tutorial I won't repeat the instructions here as arch is a rolling distro; this could change at any time, and probably will.

The Installation files are zipped in a special format called bsdtar which allows the storage of extended file meta-data which Arch uses to dynamically control file and service access permissions. If we use the incorrect program to extract these files we will lose these extended file headers and then we will begin to get into trouble.

If you went this far and didn't use the correct program to unzip and install, and don't want to go back and repeat what you've already done, there is a solution, reinstalling a package will fix the extended file headers.

So we can use this article here to create a recovery script to re-install everything. Even if we didn't mess anything up we can still do this step so that we have a viable recovery option. NOTE: Watch for the missing closing bracket in the Authors code and refer to his screenshots of nano. Add the option --color=auto to the pacman command for a colourful pacman display.

https://linuxhint.com/reinstall_all_pac ... rch_linux/
I went one step further here and added an additional file called update.sh
Code: Select all
#!/bin/bash
echo "Deleting old package list."
         rm packages.txt
         sync
echo "Done.  Creating new Catalogue..."
         pacman -Qq > packages.txt
         sync
echo "Done.  Update successful."         

Now when we add any changes to our packages and we want to reflect this in our recovery file we can issue the command;
Code: Select all
./update.sh



Before you do any pacman related things here llike initializing the keyring you will want to jump across to the main-line ArchLinux install wikki and follow the section on setting up the pacman mirrorlist.
https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/installation_guide

We will also want to set up our config.txt for our screen hardware as well as any other Pi-specific instructions like alsa sound and poll only once to preserve the sd card. Refer to the wikki tab on the arm installation page for details. Then finnish the instructions in the ARM install wikki from above.

Once the ARM install wikki has been followed I browse through the main-line ArchLinux install wikki to see if there are any additional steps that are applicable. It turns out there are; Setting up locale and timezone, as well as setting up swap, the fstab, and localhost and network.

Pi wireless may misbehave as it isn't perfect and is shoehorned in on the same bus as the bluetooth. There are fixes and patches but I haven't delved too deeply into them. Essentially you have 3 choices here; 1 use both bluetooth and wireless but have half bandwidth and buffer overrun issues, 2 use wireless but don't use bluetooth, or 3 use bluetooth but don't use wireless. Since I don't actually have any bluetooth devices I wish to pair with I go with option 2 and leave any bluetooth setup out of the process.

If you have any wireless issues try using a wired connection for initial updates, this can often "kick" the wireless module into full life so it wont keep saying "DNS ERROR" even though it can ping and curl. I have no idea why this dirty trick works, it just does. Either wireless doesn't know it's own mac adress and DHCP gives it a kick in the rear, or there is a soft-switch on the wireless chip that isn't doing what it's supposed to...

Once you have booted into your new system and initialized your pacman key rings youre going to want to modify your command prompt (or in Arch lingo; your ps1) to make the terminal a bit easier on your eyes, this can be equated to the choice of playing pacman in monochrome as opposed to playing pacman in colour.
https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Ba ... tomization

Seasoned Arch users consider the ps1 a signature of their work, and many exciting things can be done with modification to the bash files. For instance, all of the custom commands in the arch install iso are actually stored in script in the very same file we will be modifying to change our ps1.

I consider the arch iso bash to be a work of art and a beautiful template for anyone who wants to heavily modify their command prompt; https://github.com/arcolinux/arcolinux- ... el/.bashrc

This is my Root User PS1;
Code: Select all
alias ls='ls --color=auto'
alias pacman='pacman --color=auto'
PS1='[\[\033[1;31m\]\u@\[\033[0m\]\033[1;30m\]\h\[\033[0m\]\033[1;34m\]\w\[\033[om\]]\$'

This is my Normal User PS1;
Code: Select all
alias ls='ls --color=auto'
PS1='[\[\033[1;32m\]\u@\[\033[0m\]\033[1;30m\]\h\[\033[0m\]\033[1;34m\]\w\[\033[om\]]\$'


At this stage we can treat the installation the same as we would a standard one. so follow the main-line installation guide, and then follow the post-installation guide here;
https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/in ... stallation
Last edited by Lander1979 on Fri Aug 16, 2019 4:53 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby TroubledTuna » Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:17 am

Hey there Lander1979!

First off, thank-you very much for your time and effort in making your post, it means an awful lot to me.

Unfortunately, almost all of the links you provided don't work for me - I believe this website has trimmed them down inefficiently, I've tried to correct them by putting what I think is the rest of the URL but with to no luck.

I believe I installed Arch correctly, it took me the better part of a week but I was finally able to boot thanks to help from the Amazing Linux community - the issue was I wasn't doing everything as root, just some of it.

Does this mean I don't need to reinstall everything?

I've already installed and tinkered with a few things, probably incorrectly and foolishly but the idea for this for me was to learn by breaking it again and again, so I'm not too worried if I do.

Unfortunately however, I had already gone through the process of initializing Arch. (however, I will be running through the Page you linked Installation guide when I'm next on the Pi.


As for the Wireless, I'm actually happy using the Ethernet cable, I bought one specifically for this and if it's as you say somewhat temperamental it might be something I attempt to pick up further down the line.

Lastly, I'm deeply sorry for my lack of understanding but at first read a lot of what you said has gone over my tiny head :? I'm just a bit thick and slow, I assure you I'm not just lazy or unwilling to learn.

My next goal was to install i3-wm to have a working GUI to play with, however after installing i3-wm and Xorg I'm still unable to launch i3.

Could you, or anyone explain what steps you would need to take and packages you would need to install in order to get i3-wm working on an Arch Arm system - as most of the guide I have found have been for things like Raspbian etc so they're assuming you have X,Y & Z packages already installed.


I will come back and re-read and re-re-read again your post and try understanding it a bit more (It's the "ps1" bit I didn't understand mostly) and may even reinstall Arch again and try and follow your suggestions.


Thank-you from the bottom of my heart once again for your help, input and time friend :)
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby graysky » Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:37 am

TroubledTuna wrote:I'd actually prefer to install i3-wm so, that being the case would I just follow the i3wm Arch Wiki page?


Yes. Use the wiki. Do not use random blog posts or video tutorials as sources of good information.
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby Lander1979 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:33 pm

My appologies, the Links should all now work. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

The ps1 is the user prompt. On the x86 ArchLinux install ISO it is a colourful red grey and white without brackets.

To install i3; https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/I3

If it isn't working there is a chance that using the reinstall script method in the recovery article may fix it without you having to start over from scratch. My appologies again for the links not working I appreciate the material may have been a bit of meaningless meta without them.
Last edited by Lander1979 on Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What should my next steps be after installing Arch Arm?

Postby TroubledTuna » Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:15 pm

Hey folks! Thanks again to you all who've replied with your invaluable information you've provided. I'm truly grateful and you are all a testament to the great spirit of Linux :)

Unfortunately I had a bit of a hiccup, I purchased a small screen for the Pi and upon following the installation instructions borked my Pi.. after finding and checking the items GitHub page it seems I am not alone;

https://github.com/waveshare/LCD-show/issues/13

Anyway, the good news is I was able to reinstall ArchArm in just under 20 minutes, a significant decrease from the few weeks it took me last time :lol:

I will try my best to follow your advice and study it before I continue to install and tinker with things on the Pi, I might update but I don't want to spam the boards.

I noticed while reading the wiki it says;

The X.org driver for Raspberry Pi can be installed with the xf86-video-fbdev or xf86-video-fbturbo-git package.


Which is it? Why do they list both? Does it matter which one I use with a Raspberry Pi 2?

I guess lastly, besides Reddit do you guys know of any good sites for general chit-chat about Arch Arm? As it's quite a niche topic and often hard to find specific articles or issues relating to it.

Thanks again for your help and penitence with me; I assure you my stupidity and lack of understanding is punishment enough :oops:

Be well, have a lovely weekend and a great week!
Last edited by TroubledTuna on Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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