December 2, 2012

Installing Arch Linux on the Raspberry Pi

My brand-new Raspberry Pi was delivered last night. I finally got a chance to start playing with it this evening. The first thing I wanted to do was get my favourite Linux distribution Arch installed.

Here's a quick and easy way to get Arch Linux ARM installed onto the Raspberry Pi.

These instructions are taken directly from

  1. Download the zip file containing the dd image from one of these resources:
* [Torrent](
* [Direct Download](
  1. At this time, not all mirrors have the updated rootfs. If you get a 404, please try a different mirror.
  1. Extract the zip file to your hard drive, giving you the dd image archlinux-hf-2012-09-18.img
  1. Write this image to the target SD card. The SD card will need to be 2GB or larger.
* **Linux**
Replacing sdX with the location of the SD card, run:dd bs=1M if=/path/to/archlinux-hf-2012-09-18.img of=/dev/sdX
* **Windows**
Download and install Win32DiskImagerSelect the archlinux-hf-2012-09-18.img image file, select your SD card drive letter, and click Write
  1. Eject the card from your computer, insert into the Raspberry Pi, and power it on.
  1. If your keyboard, mouse, or other USB device doesn't appear to be working properly, try using it through a POWERED USB hub. The Raspberry Pi's USB ports are limited to 140mA.

Please note: The rootfs for the Raspberry Pi has been converted to systemd. There is no more /etc/rc.d or /etc/rc.conf. Please read up on systemd.


Please keep in mind that Arch is not designed for beginners and it will definitely help a lot if you have some Linux experience, and a great deal of patience. The advantage that it does have is that it is very light on resources, and comes with a very basic install. This means just a terminal interface and a limited number of programs. This is comes in handy when you want to configure your Pi for a specific purpose.

Once you've installed Arch and looked around take a look at this Article for some more important steps to get the most out of your Arch Linux Raspberry Pi.

Tags: Terminal Raspberry Pi Linux