The Advanced Light Source (ALS) is a 1.9-GeV, third-generation synchrotron optimized for the production of VUV and soft X-rays from undulators. There is also a hard X-ray program at the ALS, which is based around three 6-T superconducting bending magnets  that shift the critical energy from 3 keV to 12 keV. The extreme conditions beamline at the ALS is situated on Beamline 12.2.2, which benefits from radiation produced by one of these superbend sources. The beamline is designed for X-ray diffraction, X-ray spectroscopy, and X-ray imaging of samples held in diamond-anvil high-pressure cells (DACs). In a DAC, samples are on the order of 10 to 50 μm in diameter and 10 to 30 μm thick and are contained in a metal gasket of typical inner diameters of 100 to 150 μm. For high-quality diffraction patterns with little or no contamination from diffraction from the gasket, the X-ray beam size needs to be on the order of 10 μm × 10 μm.