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Lais Carvalho
Lais Carvalho

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New year, new me?! New OS for sure!

This post is a bit late (was written and forgotten amongst the drafts) but it is still quite relevant

I made a bit of a fuss on Twitter on the last few days because well, I bought a new computer.

The new baby** is an XPS 9300 with 32Gb of RAM and 1Tb of memory. 💥💥💥

** I know, it is ridiculous to call a laptop a 'baby' but computers are less disappointing than humans so I tend to keep them closer.
Judge me, I don't really care. :)

I have never bought a new baby and thought it was time to do so. Welcome to the life of a grownup! #mixedfeelings

What is this post about, though?

No, I have not completely lost it, I promise! The goal of this post is to make notes on the steps I should watch for the next time I decide to install a Linux-based OS on a laptop.

For official info on how to install any ArchLinux OS, check out the detailed installation guide.

The Distro choice

As the good newbie that I am, Ubuntu seemed to be the way to go. But then, speaking to some uber-pro devs (thanks @Melissa and @eumiro) it seems like ArchLinux is the way to go. The issue is: ArchLinux has no GUI. 👀 It is basically a naked Kernel running on the machine. That seemed too much for me. Apologies to my OS lecturer but "HELL, NO!"

More info? Check out this article comparing ArchLinux and Ubuntu

The solution? Manjaro! An ArchLinux-based OS with super speed and a lovely GUI. Check it out the list of editions here.

Steps for a secure install:

1. Find the ArchLinux Distro for your machine

Search for "archlinux 'computer_brand_and_model'", this will return a nice wiki page with the best practice for installation of your new OS. Read that page with all your love (and attention).

In my case, this is the returned page (screenshot below).

Screenshot of ArchLinux webpage

Under the tab 'Discussions' it is possible to see solutions for different problems users have had with the specified combo OS + hardware.
We are standing on the shoulders of giants, don't forget to take advantage of it, folks.

2. Before editing BIOS config, make a live-system USB and test it!

This is the golden advice Melissa gave me. Apparently, doing a dry-run is better than messing up everything. And if all run smoothly, we are good to go!

To make a live-system USB, follow these steps.

Then, plug the pen drive, and keep pressing F12. When you see the BIOS UEFI, set the laptop to start with the media inserted and exit. If it runs (and you're NOT doing dual boot) then we have a winner. Open the installer and follow the instructions on this video.

Congrats, you must have a working Manjaro on your machine now!

If that did not work, then you need to follow the instructions on the wiki link.


A few things I'd like to keep registered for posterity.

  1. When setting up a storage device, the option 'Erase disk: Swap with hibernate' allows for the system to come back up to work after is powered off more efficiently.

"When you put the computer to Hibernate, the session content from the RAM are moved to hard disk swap space, and after that, the system is powered off. When waked up from Hibernation, the session contents from swap gets copied back to RAM, and so it takes more time than sleep to get the PC into a working state." (source).

  1. Your click on touchpad needs to be enabled.

  2. If your time is not working, try the stuff below:

sudo hwclock --show --verbose

timedatectl status

timedatectl set-local-rtc 0

timedatectl list-timezones

timedatectl set-timezone 'your/timezone'

timedatectl set-time '2019-11-11 08:10:40'

timedatectl set-ntp true

Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

That will change your timezone setup and fix your date.

There you go!

By default, Manjaro comes with Firefox out-of-the-box. Which means, happy days!

Go and play with your terminal now, you deserve it!

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