I know that, for some people, this may seem like an obvious question, but, as a former user of the desktop version of Arch Linux (which came without GUI preinstalled), I have to ask: does the Raspberry Pi version of Arch come with Xorg/Xfree86 installed?

  • InkBlend -- honestly -- if you are this hung up about the presence of a GUI that you're not going to use anyway, for your own sake explain why this matters at all. This is a common (and misplaced) fixation, if you don't have a serious (and rational) reason to be concerned about whether X exists on your system, move on and forget about it.
    – goldilocks
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 1:48
  • Personally I have not seen this question here, so might as well leave it. Plus if someone else asks this question, we can refer them here.
    – Vincent P
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 6:47
  • @InkBlend : No, like Vincent says it is a legitimate question, and you did get an answer. Arch always begins with a minimal base, I believe. I just wanted to point out that that alone (no GUI!) is not a very good reason to consider re-installing, because it's a trivial difference. I do understand where you are coming from, BTW, which is why I mentioned all this. Pretty sure I have been pre-occupied the same way before ;)
    – goldilocks
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 11:03
  • @goldilocks, who said anything about "not using a GUI" or "re-installing"?
    – fouric
    Commented Nov 13, 2013 at 5:36
  • Probably in relation to this question: raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/5258/… from the same day.
    – goldilocks
    Commented Nov 13, 2013 at 8:08

3 Answers 3


You have to install a GUI. According to this page on eLinux.org, Arch for the RPi does not come pre-installed with a GUI.

To install any GUI with Arch, either just search the internet or use the Arch Wiki

Here is how to install LXDE:

pacman -S openbox lxde gamin dbus   #Lxde and needed dependancies
pacman -S xorg-server xorg-xinit xorg-server-utils   #Xorg
pacman -S mesa xf86-video-fbdev xf86-video-vesa   #Video Drivers
#To use startx, you will need to define LXDE in your ~/.xinitrc file:
echo “exec ck-launch-session startlxde” >> ~/.xinitrc
  • 1
    +1 for mentioning the Arch Wiki. The Wiki has to be the best documentation for a distribution I have ever come across.
    – user46
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 12:08

XFCE is a graphical desktop, and the instructions I used for putting it on the Raspberry Pi are here: http://blog.adityapatawari.com/2013/05/arch-linux-on-raspberry-pi-running-xfce.html

At the bottom of that page is a one-liner that makes it easy:

To save you some time, I have combined these commands in a small shell script and put it on github (fork it). So now, to install XFCE on your Pi, you need to fire just one command:

curl https://raw.github.com/adimania/arch-desktop-environments/master/XFCE-Arch-RPi.sh | bash

  • Use curl -k ... to avoid the SSL error...
    – Sheharyar
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 13:48

No, Arch doesn't come with a desktop environment. Why, because whats the fun in having one pre-installed. The point in Arch is, to build it yourself.

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