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#1 2013-04-30 21:22:30

QX
Member
Registered: 2010-05-20
Posts: 14

Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

I've broken a number of things in my Arch install after attempting to install Xen with horrible results (would have been nice to know it doesn't work with the proprietary nvidia drivers when I started). My normal course of action would be to reinstall from the media, rather than letting the massive amount of packages (easier to remove) and config files (no clue where to start there) gum up my system later. However this seems against some of the philosophy of Arch in general. I've read a bit about this on the forums but wasn't able to find anything to conclusively get me back to essentially the post-install but pre-configured state of Arch without leaving all those configuration files behind aswell. This is something I'd like to know for the future aswell, since I do like to reconfigure many things all at once from a clean slate (window manager, DE, sound, bios/efi, etc).

How do I get a clean fresh install of Arch without reinstalling?

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#2 2013-04-30 21:43:48

karol
Archivist
Registered: 2009-05-06
Posts: 25,426

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

Not sure if this is what you want, but you can https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Pa … base_group or use a recent backup.


Edit:
I don't think that reinstalling is against Arch philosophy.

Last edited by karol (2013-04-30 21:44:50)

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#3 2013-04-30 21:49:18

QX
Member
Registered: 2010-05-20
Posts: 14

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

Honestly, I can't get my system functioning well enough to setup proper EFI usb installation media, so besides the interest, It's my only option ATM.

Appreciate the quick reply, but how would I go about cleaning the filesystem of all the cruft? I could dig in and attempt it, but I wanted to know if there was something simpler.

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#4 2013-04-30 23:18:39

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

It sounds like you are trying not to take shortcuts because you think it would bette conform to the arch way... but in doing so you are looking for the easiest way to not take shortcuts. 

In any case, if you want to make an install medium, it does sound as though you can at least kinda boot your system.  So can you get into emergency.target or rescue.target?  If so, then I am sure you can configure your network manually from there and then make a USB installer from that point.  Or I guess you could just try and fix your system from there.

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#5 2013-04-30 23:50:13

QX
Member
Registered: 2010-05-20
Posts: 14

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

I have other systems that I could most likely use for an making a proper install medium. It's just something I've never seen a proper answer on. I'm going to attempt uninstalling everything except base and base-devel. I've made changes to pacman.conf, makepkg.conf, etc (unrelated to my issues as far as I'm aware) aswell as the various systemd services. I'm sure I have all the previous .pacsave files, and can find the necessary skel files. I guess a list of all the files and directories that should be in a fresh install will be helpful.

I'm going to start the process, and I'll try to document what's still necessary for function before gearing up to configure it from the basics.

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#6 2013-05-01 00:00:24

cfr
Member
From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,661

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

I don't think it is against Arch's philosophy to reinstall if you want to get back to square one, so to speak. It is generally considered poor practice to reinstall to solve problems which one (and sometimes the community) could learn from. But it is not clear to me that you are in that situation unless the point is to learn to get back to square one without reinstalling. But that seems like a circular justification...

Last edited by cfr (2013-05-01 00:00:55)


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#7 2013-05-01 07:00:21

QX
Member
Registered: 2010-05-20
Posts: 14

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

cfr wrote:

...unless the point is to learn to get back to square one without reinstalling. But that seems like a circular justification...

Eh, cruft is the issue. In looking into this I've realized a number of antiquated constructs and applications on my system (netcfg, unnecessary user groups, various possible conflicts, etc) that I think would be better solved just going through all of it fresh. I'm learning quite a few things that I wasn't aware had such sweeping changes in function. I also want to ditch my entire graphical workflow, and try something new.

It's been a decent learning experience so far.
Edit: One that I'm not sure I would have had if I had just started from installation media.

Last edited by QX (2013-05-01 07:01:28)

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#8 2013-05-02 08:55:16

cpalui
Member
Registered: 2013-04-23
Posts: 6

Re: Getting a recent fresh install without reinstalling?

Just an advice for the next time : save your systeme from time to time. https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Backup_Programs.

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