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Twitch Installs Arch Linux | The Scariest Text-Based Adventure Game Ever

Articles in Operating Systems | By Louis J. V. Cicalese

Published 8 months agoThu, 28 Feb 2019 11:58:11 -0800 | Last update 8 months agoThu, 28 Feb 2019 12:54:42 -0800

Can you install Arch in Zork? I don't think so.

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What is Twitch Installs Arch Linux?

Twitch Installs Arch Linux was launched on October 31, 2015, and was described as a “cooperative text-based horror game.” Inspired by similar Twitch streams such as Twitch Plays Pokémon, this project aimed to use crowdsourced, chat-based inputs to install Arch Linux one keystroke at a time.

Arch Linux is an independently developed 32-bit GNU/Linux distribution, and was chosen specifically because it doesn’t have the simplest installation process compared to other versions of Linux. It requires typing specific values into the command terminal. Anyone watching could attempt to aid (or inhibit) the installation process. Inputs were decided democratically, as every 10 seconds the most popular key press was chosen to send to the terminal.

This article links to several resources on how to actually install Arch Linux, which participants were encouraged to study before hand.

Although Arch Linux requires very specific commands, it is not extremely difficult to install provided people are familiar with the process. In order to make the process more challenging, Twitch Installs specified the following list of goals:

  1. Boot Arch Linux from the hard disk.
  2. Write a “Hello World!” script using Python
  3. Configure a fully working X server
  4. Pull up the Twitch screen in the virtual machine
  5. Install a Game Boy emulator and start Twitch Installs Arch Linux to play Pokémon
  6. Install Irssi and join the #twitchinstalls Freenode chat


The Twitch Installs Arch Linux stream was particularly vulnerable to trolls, who tried to sneak in commands such as rm - rf / to wipe the disk or dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda to really sow chaos.

Twitch Installs Arch Linux was intended to be a collaborative effort, but The Twitch Installs Arch Linux stream was taken offline once it became apparent that a botnet was being used to vote too perfectly on certain actions, such as attempting to install Nmap and then Gentoo Linux instead of Arch Linux. It seems that the troll had a sense of humor.

Because of this, Twitch Installs was forced to kill the stream prematurely, releasing this statement:

Link to original Tweet here and the GitHub here.

Apparently, the project had been hosted on a dorm network, and the duo behind the stream were worried that they may get in trouble if the person controlling the botnet actually had malicious intentions. Pulling the plug was the cautious thing to do, though it’s more likely the troll was just having a bit of fun.

This all occurred the same day that the project launched.

Twitch in the Shell

Just one day later, on November 1, 2015, the project was handed over to another team that was more equipped to handle potential security threats such as botnets. The project was rebranded as Twitch in the Shell. Apparently, the stream succeeded in achieving the original project’s objectives, and is still active today.

If you enjoyed this article you may be interested in signing up for Twitch Prime. If you sign up through this link, 256KB gets a small commission from Amazon at no cost to you.

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Download more RAM. 🐏 ⨉ 0 Posted by Louis J. V. Cicalese 8 months ago

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• [2019-02-28 11:58 PST] Louis J. V. Cicalese (8 months ago)
• [2019-02-28 11:58 PST] Louis J. V. Cicalese (8 months ago)
• [2019-02-28 11:58 PST] Louis J. V. Cicalese (8 months ago)
🕓 Posted at 28 February, 2019 11:58 AM PST

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Louis Cicalese is a person who has written about the hacker known as 4chan, the hacker known as 2channel 5channel, lesser-known search engines, CSS color namesLeeroy Jenkins, hiring Kermit the Frog impersonators and various other topics.

Account created 11 months ago.
55 posts, 57 comments, and 53 RAMs.

Last active 5 months ago:
Posted thread Remember Oregon Trail? | A Brief History of the Most Popular Educational Video Game of All Time

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