icarus74
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Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Sun Feb 10, 2013 5:24 pm

Can the more knowledgeable folks here, suggest the most lean and mean (i.e. minimalistic) distribution (hard-float), which would be a good point to start, and then extend with only the additional software I require ? For more, more than disk-space, I am looking for distro that is frugal on RAM, since the application I intend to run, is fairly demanding on RAM.

I've already started playing with Raspbian (stock), and plan to check out the Hexxeh build (based on Raspbian) and possibly Archlinux as well, at some point in time. Personally, I am not in favour of always-the-bleeding-edge philosophy of Arch, so am bit away of it. As for Hexxeh, my worry (probably unfounded) is whether it continues to be maintained ?


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tonyhughes
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:46 am

Baked Raspberry Pi Mod has a function to strip Raspbian down.

There is still more that can come out, but this gets rid of all the GUI packages, plus some other stuff you generally won't need on a server.

I'm working on an even more aggressive routine to strip the heck out of the OS, but that's still a while away.

Anything can be re-added at any time with a simple apt-get install, and because it's still Raspbian, it will remain a good support OS with the package updates that come through.

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joan
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:54 am

Why not just pick a distribution and disable the services you don't want?

If you're not using them they won't be consuming RAM.

Cloudcentric
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:16 am

I find Arch Linux Arm aka alarmpi very stable though it is bleeding edge.

My only criticism is it does not have the variety of software available from their ARMv6 Repository

http://archlinuxarm.org/packages

I use alarmpi mainly as a way of learning Linux, Raspbian I use as a pointy-clicky Distro like my main PC Lubuntu.

http://archlinuxpi.blogspot.co.uk


.....regards stripped down Raspbian, there is also piBang http://pibanglinux.org
I know everything about nothing"

icarus74
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:51 am

Thank you, all - for the excellent answers.

Had found PiBangLinux few days back, but then it is a Desktop oriented distro, and I'd have to perhaps do the same kind of cleanup, as I could perform on Raspbian. Undoubtedly, PiBangLinux is very interesting, and I've been using CrunchBangLinux for almost 3years now, on a Netbook whose raw processor speed is just slightly better than RaspberryPi itself :-). As far as I can tell, PiBankLinux has no other fundamental differences, as far as headless operation is concerned.

As for Archlinux, my issue with it is only the always-on-bleeding-edge thing. If I run some of my Pi's always connected to internet, and others which are not connected as often (or never), then I land up having an issue of dealing with multiple different overall versions, which is quite painful. Of course, we can always disable the autoupdate... but as you also noted (and something I didn't realize), that ArchLinux is missing lot of ARMv6 packages.

The other options like "Baked Raspberry Pi Mod" and "Raspbian Server" seem to be very interesting, and very close to what I think should serve my purpose.

Alvaro
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:23 pm

Nothing beats Debian on the server.

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duberry
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:27 pm

icarus74 wrote:Can the more knowledgeable folks here, suggest the most lean and mean (i.e. minimalistic) distribution (hard-float), which would be a good point to start, and then extend with only the additional software I require ? For more, more than disk-space, I am looking for distro that is frugal on RAM, since the application I intend to run, is fairly demanding on RAM.
tinycorelinux .
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so long; and thanks for all the pi

icarus74
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Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:32 am

Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 3:25 pm

Alvaro wrote:Nothing beats Debian on the server.
Isn't that was Raspbian itself is ? I mean the ARMHF on ARMv6 is all that Raspbian does, on top of Debian.

icarus74
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 4:58 pm

duberry wrote:
icarus74 wrote:Can the more knowledgeable folks here, suggest the most lean and mean (i.e. minimalistic) distribution (hard-float), which would be a good point to start, and then extend with only the additional software I require ? For more, more than disk-space, I am looking for distro that is frugal on RAM, since the application I intend to run, is fairly demanding on RAM.
tinycorelinux .
very interesting.

Cloudcentric
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 5:05 pm

Raspbian is Debian ARMv7 version compiled to run on ARMv6

Raspbian "wheezy" is Raspbian Image compiled by the Raspberry Pi Foundation


piCore is an ARM version of Tiny Core Linux which is still in BETA Testing http://tinycorearm.blogspot.co.uk

This is a list of software available at present http://www.tinycorelinux.net/4.x/armv6/tcz
I know everything about nothing"

plugwash
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 5:25 pm

Cloudcentric wrote:Raspbian is Debian ARMv7 version compiled to run on ARMv6
Raspbian is a rebuild of debian armhf to reduce the CPU requirements from armv7 to armv6 while retaining the use of hardware floating point and the hard float ABI.
Raspbian "wheezy" is Raspbian Image compiled by the Raspberry Pi Foundation
Wheezy is the codename for what will become the next debian release, currently "testing". Raspbian wheezy is the version of raspbian based on debian wheezy. Currently this is the only version of raspbian but it is hoped that there will also be versions of raspbian based on future versions of debian.

The raspberry pi foundation's download page could be clearer on this though......

Alvaro
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Re: Lean and mean, but extensible distro for headless server

Thu Feb 14, 2013 8:37 pm

icarus74 wrote:
Alvaro wrote:Nothing beats Debian on the server.
Isn't that was Raspbian itself is ? I mean the ARMHF on ARMv6 is all that Raspbian does, on top of Debian.
Basically. There is no need to look elsewhere, is my point.

I run Wheezy on my desktop and Wheezy on my Pi.

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