Setup Arch Linux on Raspberry Pi

After you finished the setup of Arch on your SD card, you can start configuring this Linux Distro to your needs. Here’s my config…
Note: In case you need to resize your root partition it’s best to do it before you do anything else, this way you avoid the risk to loose any data. You can find a tutorial to this here.

Configure Arch

Change Root Password


Update all packages

pacman -Syu  

Install some extra handy packages. These are all optional except for the sudo package. I use vim as my default editor, change it to nano if that’s your editor of choice.

pacman -S sudo screen vim git htop tmux  

Setting up correct time

Install Network Time Protocol

pacman -S ntp  

Install the NTP service

systemctl enable ntpd.service  

Enable NTP

timedatectl set-ntp 1  

Check your time settings

timedatectl status  

Check your time zone. If it is not correct, call the list of available time zones (<space> for next page, <b> for previous page, <q> to quit):

timedatectl list-timezones  

Set your time zone

timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Brussels  

Add a new user

It’s a best practice to create a new user instead of doing everything under root.

Add a new user (ex. pi)

useradd -m -g users -s /bin/bash pi  

Set the password for the new user

passwd pi  

Allow your new user to use sudo

EDITOR=vim visudo  

Search for root ALL=(ALL) ALL and add the following line just below:

pi   ALL=(ALL) ALL  

Configure your environment

Add Color to your Bash Prompt

Go to and copy the text located under /etc/bash.bashrc somewhere in the middle of the page. Then open your .bashrc in your editor:

sudo vim ~/.bashrc  

Paste the copied text in this file. At the bottom of the file add the following line to set your default editor:

export EDITOR=vim  

Save and quit.
Go back to your browser ( and copy the text under /etc/DIR_COLORS and create a new file:

sudo vim /etc/DIR_COLORS  

Paste the copied text in this file, save and quit.
Open /etc/pacman.conf

sudo vim /etc/pacman.conf  

Uncomment the #Color line.
Save and quit.

Change your hostname

sudo vim /etc/hostname  

change alarmpi to [yournewhostname]

Get yourself a nice Welcome Screen

Install Archey

sudo pacman -S yaourt  
yaourt archey  

Choose option 1
Launch Archey on startup

sudo vim .bash_profile  

Add 'command archey3' at the beginning of the file.
Save and quit.

Take a backup

On linux you can use something like this:

Locate your SD card:

sudo fdisk -l  

Backup the card:

sudo dd bs=4M if=/dev/sdf | gzip &gt; /home/macuser/image-arch-`date +%d%m%y`.gz  


sudo gzip -dc /home/macuser/image.gz | sudo dd bs=4M of=/dev/sdf  

In my next post I will cover the network config on Arch.