Archlinux

Arch Linux One of the primary differences that used to define the Linux operating system when compared to others was the stripped down, non-bloated nature of the design.  Over time, the constant push for adoption can cause feature creep and has ultimately created the potential for a slow, bloated Linux installation like what is common among some versions of Windows, especially on proprietary machines.

In my early experience with Linux, I was introduced to Slackware as a more bare-bones version, and I was an instant fan – the quick boot times and snappy responsiveness more than made up for the  learning curve in picking up a new system (my experience prior to this was essentially isolated to Windows/DOS, it was the late ’90s and my only programming experience was in GW Basic and MSDOS Batch files).

Having become more acclimated to the Linux environment, I was turned on to the idea of a system without all the frills.  A recent acquisition had prompted an idea, the office was liquidating some assets and I purchased a spare PC – a Dell Vostro 230s. A friend had recently posted an addendum to the Archlinux getting started page so I decided to give it a try on this new acquisition, and put together a system to serve up media on my network.

The installation was straightforward, and I only needed to reinstall once (several modules failed to properly load the first time, and I hadn’t progressed too far).  One issue did arise that I will note here.

If you do not see anything other than your loopback device when running  ip link, additional steps might be required.

Try  reloading your ethernet/wifi modules.  In my case these were Broadcom ethernet modules :

This alleviated my network connectivity issue and I was able to proceed and complete the installation.  I installed gnome and I’m planning on building out some pages in my intranet to be served up by this box.  If you are interested in a lightweight distribution that is relatively easy to install and extremely well-documented, consider Archlinux.