[Need Help]Installing Ubuntu system like Arch

I like Ubuntu for the support and large community but I cannot figure out how to customize it.

I have always used an Arch-based system and therefore I know how stuff works. I know you install xorg, video driver, and WM. Then auto start something like Slim and add a line of code to .xinitrc.

I basically want to know how to do this with the Ubuntu minimal CD. I have it set up in VB right now and will eventually install it on my laptop.

TL;DR: I don't know how to use Debian based-distros. Please explain stuff lol

Forgot to mention the reason why I'm going with the minimal install, is that I don't want all the bloat. I will probably end up using Openbox. Also, I need to know how to auto start something like NetworkManager and I need a volume thing that will work in Tint2

Use manual packages or the Lubuntu minimal should be fine

Pretty sure installing a DE will install all the rest needed as well... But I never used Ubuntu for very long, because... well, Ubuntu.

Start from the ubuntu server install, I don't know if you can get more minimal than that, you can then enable your repositories and use apt-get to start installing what you need

Debian like Arch, that would be Debian Unstable.

Just install Debian. Pretty much the same install procedure as any other binary distro. Then switch to the unstable repos, configure them, and you're done. If you know Arch, Debian is simpler than Arch, and that pacman is app-get is something that you'll be able to figure out yourself I guess. With Debian switching to systemd, there isn't that much of a difference between Debian Unstable and Arch anyway, except maybe for less up to date application packages (you'll have to install more from git than with Arch to get the same version), and you'll also get more breakage, Debian Unstable is not as stable as mainline Arch for being about the same bleeding edge, if you want lower maintenance and the same bleeding edge as Arch, stay with Arch or look at Gentoo or Fedora Rawhide or Mageia Cauldron, because Debian Unstable often takes you for a ride, but if you don't want more maintenance than in Arch, stick to Debian Testing or even Debian Stable, but then you'll have to lower your expectancy in terms of modern functionality and performance, that's the trade-off.

I tend to think of Debian Unstable as Arch with [testing] enabled, maybe Debian Testing is closer to mainline Arch?

I used this webpage as when I experimented Ubuntu minimal installs:


For the most part the guide helps get a basic desktop with minimal functions. The basics used to get Arch running can be translated over to Ubuntu with some command line differences.  If I remember right xorg and xserver are the base packages you will for the gui/input up for Ubuntu, then mesa, and so on. 

A safer way I've been experimenting with is using qcow2 images with minimal installs and building from there. Then when I get get a working version that doesn't constantly crash, I convert it to a testing partition on a hard drive.  That way I keep an OS operational and not having to start back from scratch again with installing an OS. 

Debian Testing is not rolling, Unstable is. OP wanted like Arch, one of the main features of Arch is the rolling release model, so I thought that is was more logical to compare Arch with Debian Testing. I have no clue where Debian Testing is at the moment in terms of bleeding edgeness, and whether they keep on track with Arch mainline.

The big difference is going to be the problem solving anyway, the Debian community is not as fast as the Arch community in ironing out wrinkles in bleeding edge packages. Debian Unstable is a lot more work than Arch to keep things working all the time. In that sense, Debian Testing is probably a better choice if the OP doesn't want to stay with Arch, but that will go at the expense of the rolling release model, and I don't know if systemd is already introduced beyond Debian Unstable either.

It just seems like such a strange thing to want to step down from Arch to Debian. I would understand if someone would run Debian in a container or on another machine to keep up to snuff with Debian, but to switch on a main system just seems like a strange proposition. Arch hasn't made any major goofs lately or anything like that, I don't see why. If the OP switches to Debian with systemd, he'll roam the Arch wiki to solve systemd problems in Debian anyway, because of the lack of experience of the Debian community with systemd. I think it's a borderline masochistic move to be honest lol.

I need to know, from the ground up, with Ubuntu minimal, how to get a desktop working. I related this to Arch because the install process will be similar. I want to know how to install things like Slim, X, and Openbox. I have never used Ubuntu before to this extent. I do not want the regular Ubuntu install because of the bloat. Also, rolling-release is not needed. Some of you thought this.


In this case, the first thing you need to do is enable the multiverse and other packages in your sources file /etc/apt/sources.list this file contains all your repositories (Similar to /etc/pacman.conf on arch) so you can also add extra ones that you find on launchpad to it. Once done do a sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade to update your system

Now start by installing the programs you need, install SLiM first with sudo apt-get install slim it will pull the X dependencies and configure it using whichever guide you see fit. To enable it on startup use /etc/init.d/slim enable (That's the equivalent of systemctl slim enable for ubuntu) now you can also install the other packages you need with apt-get install (That's the equivalent of pacman -S ) if you want to find the packages you can do apt-cache search package 

So you like Ubuntu for the support and the community but can't figure out how to install it and therefore have to ask it on this forum, even though you're well versed in Arch... and your question was not about how to get a rolling bleeding edge Debian based system but rather a standard Ubuntu install with some packages that are in the standard Ubuntu repos... this is very incongruent...

From my perspective installing a Ubuntu system from the ground up is much different from installing an Arch system from the ground up. I just don't know the steps to do it. I have not found any guides similar to the Arch Wiki guides that explain this type of stuff.


You said you wanted Ubuntu due to the larger community and better support. So where is this better support if you can not even find out how to install it?


Ubuntu has no community. All 14.04 LTS versions are out by the Xubuntu, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, etc.. communities... Ubuntu 14.04 LTS is not there yet... because there is no community to do it... oh and that nice display server that will make Ubuntu so much better than everything else... sorry, not before 16.04... and that posh Ubuntu phone... sorry, not before Apple ceases to buy up the world's sapphire glass supplies... lolz