An acquaintance with Arch Linux

Jun 02, 2009

After drooling around with the biannual release of Ubuntu, I got a chance to caress an Arch Linux distribution. Arch Linux is a simple, flexible and lightweight distribution system. The developers of Arch Linux have decided to concentrate on three very significant things code accuracy, elegance and simplicity.

Simplicity; according to Arch, is defined as "...without unnecessary additions, modifications, or complications."

Arch Linux Before you jump on to download an .iso, you may want to check out the Arch Linux gallery that carries some beautiful screenshots.

What's amazing is to observe that the sole attention of Arch Linux is to keep things simple. They are almost obsessed with the use of the word simple! A detailed installation guides and download options for users is a perfect combo for the uninitiated.

The installation is smooth, even for a newbie - reboot, partitioning, keyboard, time zone, etc., and you're done. What follows is the Arch Linux Logon screen!

The history of Arch Linux goes back to the attempt by Judd Vinet when he wanted to have his own ideal distribution system which should be simple. Jude explained the correct interpretation of 'simple' by stating,

Simple does not mean "newbie friendly", instead it means that the system is structured in such a way that a user can easily configure it to his liking by changing simple configuration files and installing just what he needs.

There are a plethora of features which make Arch Linux one of the best Linux distributions. A few of them include;

* The base Linux system that gets automatically installed with Arch Linux gives the user an option to configure or expand depending on his utility parameters.
* It uses the widely acclaimed Pacman Package Management system which helps the user choose a program from its own repository wherein it is stored.
* The Rolling Update system constantly updates any new installations for trouble free and fast usage of the system.
* The Arch Build System or ABS helps by combining all the necessary information in a package. This packaged file can be used as and when required for whichever purposes it suits the best.

With these efficient features, Arch Linux becomes a truly great distribution for Linux. It ensures that the users implement the 'Do-It-Yourself' philosophy which helps in providing a 'works-for-everyone' experience, helping a system become easy to use and stable in its operations. Even the minutest of details can be easily understood and configured with the utmost of ease. Ubuntu, which is one of the favorites has grown far and wide over the past few years but Arch Linux is another good cookie in the box. It does not position itself for the newbies, but once one becomes accustomed to it, the chances of achieving high satisfaction levels are supreme.