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Handy reference for the best distro out there
on December 31, 2009
While this reference is a bit preferable to printing out all of the not-optimized-for-print wiki entries, I wonder how long it will remain relevant. The pace of development and change in the Linux kernel and by extension, the various components such as sound (ALSA, OSS), video (X/Xorg, KMS, mesa), networking, etc - are pretty fluid right now. Also it would have been quite helpful for the beginner if included were the entries for manually setting up wpa_supplicant in the even someone needs to perform an install and only has wireless available to them.
Arch Linux is, in my opinion, not the distribution for someone brand new to Linux to start with. There's just too many opportunities for things to go wrong, to be misunderstood, or to be forgotten and this could lead to a frustration which in itself could be counterproductive. However with some practice, multiple dry runs in a virtual environment, and this little reference manual, you can be rewarded with an incredibly stable, up to date, high performance work environment. And in the process you will gain an understanding of the underpinnings that make a GNU/Linux operating system work.
There are indeed some things that make an Arch install procedure unique from other Linux install procedures and again there are some things about maintaining an Arch Linux install unique, so this reference will offer some valuable information that you won't readily find in the all-in-one type Linux references.