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I agree on both counts with the above. The speed my Arch system in it's present state boots in is truely awesome. It is under 10 seconds (probably closer to 5) from the time I make my choice in lilo to the console login prompt. Add another 3-5 seconds to get to the KDM login screen when booting straight to graphical. It has taken a lot more work to get it usable than Slackware. I also would choose Slackware over Arch if I had to choose.
EDIT: I just realized I posted to a 3 year old thread. ooops.
i dont mean to interupt but the fastest boot time goes to knoppix (from me that is) also if you are trying for a different angle AROS (on amiga) is the fastest i've seen so far...
guys have you tried amiga.... nice os...although i havent got a clue how to work with it.... its boot time i dont think there is one i chose the option from grub and then came the workbench desktop....
Moblin boots in under 5 seconds (in fact, when I tried it, less than 3 from BIOS to desktop [but that's from an SSD]). And Chromium OS also boots very quickly - in as little as 7 seconds. Both these distros also are optimised for netbooks.
So I'm not really interested in tweaking my laptop into the fastest boot in the world. I am however very pleased that my compaq presario boots to Fedora 13 KDE 4.4.5 in little over 30 seconds! For me, nothing has ever booted that fast.