Hey, you. You're finally awake. You were trying to configure your OS declaratively, right? Walked right into that NixOS ambush, same as us, and those dotfiles over there.
Disclaimer: This is not a community framework or distribution. It's a private configuration and an ongoing experiment to feel out NixOS. I make no guarantees that it will work out of the box for anyone but myself. It may also change drastically and without warning.
Until I can bend spoons with my nix-fu, please don't treat me like an authority or expert in the NixOS space. Seek help on the NixOS discourse instead.
|Shell:||zsh + zgenom|
|DM:||lightdm + lightdm-mini-greeter|
|WM:||bspwm + polybar|
|GTK Theme:||Ant Dracula|
Acquire NixOS 21.11 or newer:
# Yoink nixos-unstable wget -O nixos.iso https://channels.nixos.org/nixos-unstable/latest-nixos-minimal-x86_64-linux.iso # Write it to a flash drive cp nixos.iso /dev/sdX
Boot into the installer.
Switch to root user:
sudo su -
Do your partitions and mount your root to
Install these dotfiles:
nix-shell -p git nixFlakes # Set HOST to the desired hostname of this system HOST=... # Set USER to your desired username (defaults to hlissner) USER=... git clone https://github.com/hlissner/dotfiles /etc/dotfiles cd /etc/dotfiles # Create a host config in `hosts/` and add it to the repo: mkdir -p hosts/$HOST nixos-generate-config --root /mnt --dir /etc/dotfiles/hosts/$HOST rm -f hosts/$HOST/configuration.nix cp hosts/kuro/default.nix hosts/$HOST/default.nix vim hosts/$HOST/default.nix # configure this for your system; don't use it verbatim! git add hosts/$HOST # Install nixOS USER=$USER nixos-install --root /mnt --impure --flake .#$HOST # If you get 'unrecognized option: --impure', replace '--impure' with # `--option pure-eval no`. # Then move the dotfiles to the mounted drive! mv /etc/dotfiles /mnt/etc/dotfiles
Then reboot and you're good to go!
⚠️Don't forget to change your
$USERpasswords! They are set to
And I say,
bin/hey, what's going on?
Usage: hey [global-options] [command] [sub-options] Available Commands: check Run 'nix flake check' on your dotfiles gc Garbage collect & optimize nix store generations Explore, manage, diff across generations help [SUBCOMMAND] Show usage information for this script or a subcommand rebuild Rebuild the current system's flake repl Open a nix-repl with nixpkgs and dotfiles preloaded rollback Roll back to last generation search Search nixpkgs for a package show [ARGS...] ssh HOST [COMMAND] Run a bin/hey command on a remote NixOS system swap PATH [PATH...] Recursively swap nix-store symlinks with copies (and back). test Quickly rebuild, for quick iteration theme THEME_NAME Quickly swap to another theme module update [INPUT...] Update specific flakes or all of them upgrade Update all flakes and rebuild system Options: -d, --dryrun Don't change anything; perform dry run -D, --debug Show trace on nix errors -f, --flake URI Change target flake to URI -h, --help Display this help, or help for a specific command -i, -A, -q, -e, -p Forward to nix-env
Because managing hundreds of servers is the tenth circle of hell without a declarative, generational, and immutable single-source-of-truth configuration framework like NixOS.
Sure beats the nightmare of capistrano/chef/puppet/ansible + brittle shell scripts I left behind.
Should I use NixOS?
Short answer: no.
Long answer: no really. Don't.
Long long answer: I'm not kidding. Don't.
Unsigned long long answer: Alright alright. Here's why not:
- Its learning curve is steep.
- You will trial and error your way to enlightenment, if you survive long enough.
- NixOS is unlike other Linux distros. Your issues will be unique and difficult to google.
- If the words "declarative", "generational", and "immutable" don't make you fully erect, you're considering NixOS for the wrong reasons.
- The overhead of managing a NixOS config will rarely pay for itself with fewer than 3 systems (perhaps another distro with nix on top would suit you better?).
- Official documentation for Nix(OS) is vast, but shallow.
- Unofficial resources and example configs are sparse and tend to be either too simple or too complex (or outdated).
- The Nix language is obtuse and its toolchain is unintuitive. This is made infinitely worse if you've never touched the shell or a functional language before, but you'll need to learn it to do even a fraction of what makes NixOS worth all the trouble.
- A decent grasp of Linux and its ecosystem is a must, if only to distinguish Nix(OS) issues from Linux (or upstream) issues -- as well as to debug them or report them to the correct authority (and coherently).
- If you need somebody else to tell you whether or not you need NixOS, you don't need NixOS.
If none of this has deterred you, then you didn't need my advice in the first place. Stop procrastinating and try NixOS!
How do you manage secrets?
Why did you write bin/hey?
I envy Guix's CLI and want similar for NixOS, whose toolchain is spread across many commands, none of which are as intuitive:
I don't claim
heyis the answer, but everybody likes their own brew.
How 2 flakes?
Would it be the NixOS experience if I gave you all the answers in one, convenient place?
No. Suffer my pain:
- A three-part tweag article that everyone's read.
- An overengineered config to scare off beginners.
- A minimalistic config for scared beginners.
- A nixos wiki page that spells out the format of flake.nix.
- Official documentation that nobody reads.
- Some great videos on general nixOS tooling and hackery.
- A couple flake configs that I may have shamelessly rummaged through.
- Some notes about using Nix
- What helped me figure out generators (for npm, yarn, python and haskell)
- Learn from someone else's descent into madness; this journals his experience digging into the NixOS ecosystem
- What y'all will need when Nix drives you to drink.