This is an old revision of the document!

Free your Arch GNU/Linux to Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre

Complete migration

Install Hyperbola keyring and mirror list

Disable signature verification manually by modifying the line in /etc/pacman.conf:

RemoteFileSigLevel = Never

Install Hyperbola keyring package and mirror list for Hyperbola repositories in /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist:

# pacman -U
# pacman -U

Reenable signature verification in /etc/pacman.conf:

#RemoteFileSigLevel = Required

Rename mirrorlist.pacnew as mirrorlist:

# cp /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist.pacnew /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist

Replace Arch packages with Hyperbola ones

Clean the pacman cache:

# pacman -Scc

Force the database sync:

# pacman -Syy

Update to libre packages:

# pacman -S pacman
# pacman -Suu base
If you want to ignore extra prompts and accept all confirmations over replaced packages, you can optionally use –noconfirm
If some of your packages have higher version than in Hyperbola repos they will be downgraded to lower version of libre packages to eliminate packages that are nonfree and because we are a long-term support distro.
Hyperbola is a long-term support distro based on Arch plus stability and security from Debian. It isn't a rolling release distro like Arch because Hyperbola is using Arch snapshots for its versions and Parabola's blacklist as base to keep it 100% libre. Also Hyperbola is using Debian patches, therefore all packages are being stabilized with improvements through its development. See the Packaging Guidelines and Social Contract for further details.

Install your-freedom to remove nonfree packages that do not have libre replacements:

# pacman -S your-freedom

Update bootloader configuration

Please update either GRUB or Syslinux, 'but not both', as it would cause a kernel panic.


For grub regenerate your grub.cfg file running:

# grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg
Check for more information


Manually change following lines in /boot/syslinux/syslinux.cfg to reflect change:

  LABEL hyperbola
     MENU LABEL Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre
     LINUX ../vmlinuz-linux-libre-lts
     INITRD ../initramfs-linux-libre-lts.img
  LABEL hyperbolafallback
     MENU LABEL Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre Fallback
     LINUX ../vmlinuz-linux-libre-lts
     INITRD ../initramfs-linux-libre-lts-fallback.img
Since Hyperbola is a long-term support distro, linux-libre-lts is our default kernel.

Alternatively you can remove the configuration file and reinstall syslinux.

Other bootloaders


Since Hyperbola has announced the end of systemd support, migration to OpenRC is required. See our migration article for further details.

Complete the migration

Restart your system - it should boot into Hyperbola.

After installation

Welcome, you are now in Hyperbola! Do you encounter some hardware not working after installing your-freedom? This most likely means that there's no free driver or firmware available for the device (check dmesg). It's common for Wi-Fi cards to require a firmware to be loaded into the card. Many cards don't work at all if the firmware is missing. The firmware is often proprietary, thus we don't distribute it. It's the case for almost any internal Wi-Fi card.

The usual fix to the problem is either to replace the card or use an external USB Wi-Fi dongle. You can buy one with Atheros chipset (eg. ath9k_htc for external USB dongle or ath9k for PCI and PCI-Express expansion slots) or RTL818x chipset (eg. rtl8187 for external USB dongle or rtl818x_pci for PCI and PCI-Express expansion slots) since there is a free firmware for these Wi-Fi adapters. You can also search the h-node database to find Wi-Fi adapters known to work well with free software or scripts/deblob-$ver to check Wi-Fi adapters included in the Linux-libre device blacklist.

If you find any trouble applying these instructions please report it on our Bug Tracker!


This wiki article is based on ParabolaWiki.