What is the difference between base, core, extra and community systems when installing the Arch-Linux?


pacstrap /mnt base

You are confusing a couple different concepts here. base is a package group. It's what many consider to be the “default” package set for an Arch Linux install (and many of the rest of Arch will assume that you have all of the packages in base installed—so this isn't really an incorrect assertion).

On the other hand, core, extra and community are repositories. It is not too surprising that these can be confused with package groups (since repos are just large sets of packages). But package groups are meant to associate particular packages with one another (e.g., the gnome group contains packages related to GNOME). Repositories just store packages.

Generally speaking, core contains packages that are central to the running of a Linux distribution. You should probably expect to have almost all of its packages installed. For example, I have about ⅔ of them installed on my machine.

extra are packages that are widely used in running a Linux machine but will not be absolutely necessary for keeping a stable system. For example, you will find xorg-server in extra (not core) because headless machines do not need X.

community is a bit of a different beast. Where core and extra are maintained by the Arch Developers, community is maintained by the Arch Trusted Users. This group of users maintains the AUR and moves things into community as they (and the community at-large) see fit.

There are other repositories as well (most notably multilib and the testing repositories), but not all users will want them enabled. In addition, you can easily create your own repository (which is one of the best decisions I have ever made) that you can host locally with a tool called repose. Additionally, there are some Unofficial User Repositories.

Some additional reading:

  • Thank you for sharing this information. 😀 It makes sense to me now 👍 – Nishanth Sep 3 '15 at 16:33
  • Thanks alot for the links. They were so much helpful :D. – Shivam aggarwal Dec 25 '16 at 12:42

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