Packages required for an absolute minimum working Linux system?
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For the bash dependencies, are they generated by compiling the kernel and bash?
It depends. There are two types of dependencies for software:
1. Dependencies that are needed for the software to function. The developer decided to built his software with the help of those dependencies and therefore they are mandatory.
2. Dependencies that are optional. It is for example possible to compile MPlayer without having dependencies on some codecs. This is decided on compile time by the user, not the developer. Of course only if you do it yourself, otherwise the developers of your distro will decide.
In your bash example I don't know for sure, but I would think that those dependencies are of type 1.
I have completed both LFS and BLFS and now I want to create a bare system because there was so much required in the LFS that I wouldn't make use off. It wasn't too clear as to what was required for some packages to create something as simple as a working bash system.
Installing a minimal distro is the best option; let the developers sort it out for you! Several distros will install just the kernel, the Gnu utilities, vi, and a package installer.
CentOS has a minimal option if you get the DVD rather than the CD (you only need the first DVD).
Salix will install a core system (no X) of Slackware for you.
Sabayon SpinBase is similar, and also has a variant ServerBase with an optimised kernel.
Last edited by DavidMcCann; 01-25-2012 at 11:43 AM.
If you really want to go minimal try Tinycore or Slitaz. Tinycore only comes as base system (If you don't want X then try Microcore instead) where you can add things. Slitaz comes with a full set of tools for making "flavors" of Slitaz, so you can very easily make one with just Bash or any other tool you want.