Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Tuesday, November 30, 2021 at 21:50

This tutorial explains how to install Hyperbola computer operating system with KDE Plasma Desktop on a virtual machine. Let's start!

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See also Parabola GNOME Install Guide

About Hyperbola

Hyperbola is an advanced computer operating system from Brazil based on GNU/Linux with the libre kernel that is fully free software and completely without systemd technology.  Hyperbola is like Arch and Debian combined in Devuan way, that is, it is basically an always-latest-packages operating system, made stable by long-term-support OS versioning, and cleaned up completely of systemd by using OpenRC technology instead. The closest similarity is to Parabola, a fellow exclusively free software distro, by the difference that Hyperbola is more stable, or not rolling-release, and more free-from-systemd, or not having systemd at all. The similarity to Ubuntu is that Hyperbola system is released in schedules and can be downloaded as LTS versions.



We will install Hyperbola GNU/Linux-libre with this configuration. 

  • Computer: an AQEMU virtual machine.
  • Booting mode: BIOS legacy.
  • CPU: 2.
  • RAM: 2000MB.
  • Network: automatic.
  • Hard disk: /dev/sda
  • Disk size: 20GB.
  • Usernames: root, master
  • Passwords: master, master
  • Kernel: linux-libre-lts.
  • Init: OpenRC.
  • Display server: Xenocara.
  • Display manager: SDDM.


Start The Machine

Boot up Hyperbola ISO with AQEMU Virtual Machine. If you don't know how, read AQEMU Guide. Hyperbola operating system will greet you with its bootloader like pictured below. Now select the first option, then you enter the Hyperbola Installation, and you are ready to start the first step. 

Step 1. Preparations

First command is Hyperbola's key initialization.

# pacman-key --init

Then, we refresh our repository data. This should work without prior configuration on a virtual machine.

# pacman -Sy

Then, we install necessary keyring packages. Please note that it is hyperbola, not parabola.

# pacman -S archlinux-keyring hyperbola-keyring

Lastly, we populate both keyrings so next time we can install packages from the repository. After this command finished, continue next step.

# pacman-key --populate archlinux hyperbola 

Step 2. Disk Partitioning and Mounting

First, we format our virtual machine's hard disk.

# fdisk /dev/sda

Then, we format the disk partition to EXT4 Journaling Filesystem. 

# mkfs.ext4 /dev/sda1

Lastly, we access that disk partition by putting it on the folder. After this command finished, continue next step. 

# mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

Step 3. External Setup

First, we download and setup software packages that constitute a basic operating system  into the folder.

# pacstrap /mnt

Then, we setup GRUB bootloader into the folder. 

# pacstrap /mnt grub

Lastly, we setup secure wifi tools. This will be replaced anyway but please do as is this time.  After this command finished, continue next step.

# pacstrap /mnt wpa_supplicant

Note: Hyperbola is available in two choices, stable and testing editions, and we use stable by default in this tutorial. However, in the future we can install Hyperbola testing edition by changing mirrorlist to testing instead.

Step 4. Internal Setup and Reboot

First, we generate filesystems table into the installed system.

# genfstab -p /mnt >> /mnt/etc/fstab

Second, we enter the installed system to work internally from the inside. 

# arch-chroot /mnt

Then, we name this system hypermachine. 

# echo hypermachine > /etc/hostname

Then, we choose a timezone for this system e.g. change Asia/Jakarta to yours.

# ln -s /usr/share/zoneinfo/Asia/Jakarta /etc/localtime

Then, we change the administrator's password into 'master' without quote.

# passwd

Then, we add administrator username 'root' into 'video' group.

# gpasswd -a root video

Then, we generate a working 'initramfs' necessary file for our linux-libre-lts kernel.

# mkinitcpio -p linux-libre-lts

Then, we internally install GRUB bootloader into system's own hard disk. 

# grub-install /dev/sda

Then, we write the GRUB bootloader configuration into system's booting directory.

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

To this point, your Hyperbola system is installed successfully. Now reboot and continue next step.

# reboot 

Step 5. Login and Install KDE Desktop

  • username: root
  • password: master

After rebooting, you will be welcomed by Hyperbola system with the computer's name hypermachine as we setup. Login with administrator's username and password above and then continue to the first command line. 

First, we do key initialization once again.

# pacman-key --init

Second, we create normal username 'master' and password 'master'.

# useradd -m master

Then, we should connect to the internet, by firstly reading network interfaces available.

# ip link

Then, we enable the wired interface ens3, or virtual machine's ethernet network, so we can use it. On AQEMU it is ens3, on other machines it might look different so please adapt it yourself.

# ip link set ens3 up

Then, we give IP address and DNS access to the wired interface ens3.

# dhcpcd ens3

Then, we test our internet access by pinging to as a salute and greetings. You should see replies tailed with ttl=200ms or so.

# ping -c 3

Then, we install necessary software packages that constitute desktop environment named KDE Plasma. Firstly, we install the display server and on Hyperbola it is not Xorg anymore, not X11 either but named Xenocara.

# pacman -S xenocara-server xenocara-xinit

Then, we install a full KDE Plasma Desktop with necessary NetworkManager for easier networking and Polkit for easier end-user authentications like for shutdown. 

# pacman -S plasma-meta networkmanager polkit

Then, we enable the NetworkManager like this. Please note that Hyperbola does not use systemctl but rc-update instead as we use OpenRC here. 

# rc-update add NetworkManager default

Then, we enable SDDM display manager, that is our login screen, so every time we start our computer we will arrive at the login screen.

# rc-update add sddm default

Lastly, we reboot our system and you should arrive at the blue login screen.

# reboot

Feel free to login by username 'master' and password 'master'.

Final Result

Once logged in, you will see Hyperbola KDE running on your virtual machine. Congratulations!


Installation Guide


Xenocara, Display Server

OpenRC, Init System

Beginner's Guide

KDE from Arch Wiki

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.