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Hey I want to leave arch Linux. I created my own little operating system but it is so bare that I really wanna leave it. However, I cannot just boot another OS like ubuntu. I have to manually go into root and mess with files that I have no idea what I am doing. Has anyone else switched their computer from arch Linux to something else like Ubuntu. If so, I would love a step by step process on how to do it! Thanks!

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Most linuxes have an option to use preexisting partitions.


  1. Make sure that your filesystem types are supported by the new distro for root filesystem use. (specially if you use RAID or funky filesystems)
  2. Backup. In these times of cheap USB disks there is no reason not to. boot the new OS from CD, either a CD-boot, or via the emergency shell in the installer
  3. mount the root fs, and
  4. move all configuration dirs to "home" dirs or a /backup
  5. Make sure, really sure you have everything.
  6. kill all system dirs (/bin /usr etc)
  7. Install the OS via a "custom" partition option, and select one that leaves files intact.

I did this several times with Fedora. (because I've RAID-1 discs in it)

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If you have nothing on the machine you want to keep, then download ubuntu, put it onto a CD, then install, allowing it to wipe the disk and repartition it as it needs to.


If there is anything you want to keep, then it is most likely in the /home/yourusername folder. You'll need to copy these off, but how you do this depends a lot on how much of arch you have running.

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I have tried installing ubuntu through a usb because I have a net book with no CD drive. It has worked but that was before I had arch linux. It does not work anymore. It tells me I need to modify some logs or somthing – Josh Dec 6 '11 at 18:20
You are going to have to be far more specific and detailed with your information if you want help – Paul Dec 6 '11 at 21:09

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