Migrating Antergos Linux to Arch Linux

Since the Antergos project eneded, those of us who have loved Antergos have been sad.

And there was an Antergos forum post about future updates magically updating or migrating Antergos installations to Arch Linux installations. Well, that may not have happened so magically, and I guess no one ever really promised us Linux magic, especially with an Arch related distro, so we have to spin up our own magic I guess. Hopefully, this article can provide a bit of that.

I’m writing this on the first day of November, 2019, and the project ended in late May. So there have been updates that have helped to change existing Antergos installations into Almost Arch installations. But there are a few things that still need to happen. Here’s a recipe for converting your Antergos installation into a working Arch installation:

  1. Logout of you desktop so you see your X display manager login. Then hit ALT-CTL-F2 and log into your account and become root:
    su -
  2. Change to multi-user (non-graphical) run level.
    # systemctl start multi-user.target
  3. Remove the pamac graphical package manager.
    # kill -s SIGKILL $(pgrep pamac) && pacman -R pamac
  4. Remove all antergos packages (if you want a pure Arch installation).
    # pacman -Rddnus $(pacman -Qq | grep antergos)
  5. Modify /etc/pacman.conf to remove references to Antergos repos. Just comment out all sections with [antergos] or [antergos-staging]

  6. Change entries in /etc/os-release (which is a symlink /usr/lib/os-release) over to Arch values
     NAME="Arch Linux"
     PRETTY_NAME="Arch Linux"
  7. Update your system:
    # pacman -Syyu
  8. If when you run neofetch or screenfetch you still see Antergos, then you should re-install the lsb-release package
    # pacman -S lsb-release
  9. Make sure you have all required files for your desktop environment, including all Xorg and related files, video drivers, mesa, etc etc, which are now coming from Arch repos. May need to re-install from new repos. One of my machines had Cinnamon (desktop) antergos repos, so I had to remove all of those and get regular arch packages. Just to be safe, I re-installed all my xorg packages along with lightdm packages and my video drivers. This time I knew they all came from arch repos.
    This article explains the process for Cinnamon. This particular article is good, but it is old (2014). Packages names can change a lot!

  10. Change grub theme to an arch linux theme, if that’s what you want. Remove Antergos grub theme. (Should already be gone.) When you install grub from arch repos, it may not overwrite your existing antergos /etc/default/grub.cfg. If not, there should be another grub.cfg in /etc/default that has a different name, like grub.cfg.pacman or something. Look at them both and make sure the correct one is in /etc/default/grub.cfg. I would also install a grub theme, such as grub2-theme-archlinux.
    # yay -S grub2-theme-archlinux

    Then, run

    # grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg

    If there are no errors, you should be good for a reboot, almost.

  11. Restart your graphical target run level.
    # systemctl start graphical.target

    If there are any missing X related packages, you can troubleshoot your errors and straighten them out.

  12. When youre ready, reboot your computer, if you dare!


If you installed Antergos using LVM, you’ll still see Antergos in your LVM names. There are still some packages on your system, such as webkit-theme-antergos, and you can see some more using updatedb && locate antergos. But for all intents and purposes, you now should have an arch linux installation. Those remaining files weren’t removed when antergos packages were removed, but they can be removed manually I think without affecting the rest of the system. But I’m not sure. For now, they’re not bothering me. Maybe I’ll remove them later.

I’ve changed my icons around to reflect the change, in my start menu for example. Neofetch and Screenfetch now report an Arch installation. And really, there’s just very little left of Antergos in the installation. Linux distros are simply a collection of choices, and Antergos was mainly a collection of very nice styling decisions and special packages, and those packages are now replaced by Arch packages. And you’re free to keep the best choices for your indidualized Arch installation!