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Minimal Slackware installation for network appliance or virtual machine

Posted 05-08-2022 at 06:57 AM by rkelsen
Updated 05-09-2022 at 05:53 AM by rkelsen

After a recent thread about minimal Slackware installations, I thought I'd give this a go.

I'm not really in favour of doing less than a full installation, because Slackware isn't designed to be installed this way. This is offered completely without warranty. I'm not responsible for you breaking your system if you try this.

With that out of the way, I got a basic installation of Slackware64-15.0 with networking, ssh and ntp in 315Mb.

These are the required 59 packages:

Code:
a/aaa_base
a/aaa_glibc-solibs
a/aaa_libraries
a/aaa_terminfo
a/acl
a/attr
a/bash
a/bin
a/coreutils
a/cpio
a/cracklib
a/dbus
a/dcron
a/devs
a/dialog
a/e2fsprogs
a/elogind
a/etc
a/eudev
a/file
a/findutils
a/gawk
a/glibc-zoneinfo
a/grep
a/gzip
a/hostname
a/kernel-generic
a/kernel-modules
a/kmod
a/less
a/libgudev
a/libpwquality
a/lilo
a/logrotate
a/mkinitrd
a/nvi
a/openssl-solibs
a/os-prober
a/pam
a/pkgtools
a/procps-ng
a/sed
a/shadow
a/sharutils
a/sysklogd
a/sysvinit
a/sysvinit-scripts
a/tar
a/util-linux
a/which
a/xz

l/libunistring

n/iproute2
n/iputils
n/libmnl
n/net-tools
n/network-scripts
n/ntp
n/openssh
Defaults/assumptions:

- Uses LILO, but could just as easily use eLILO or grub.
- ext4 for filesystem
- Static IP for networking

Tips:

- You might also need "kernel-huge" to boot the first time. After you've added the initrd to your LILO configuration, and re-run LILO, you can remove it.

- I chose nvi instead of elvis because it's a lot smaller. Remember to tell the installer to use whichever one you choose... it creates the /usr/bin/vi symlink.

- There is no DHCP because I used a static IP address. If you'd rather have DHCP, then you'll need to add dhcpcd from the n series and tell the installer to use DHCP instead.

- After installation the size of the above is about 535Mb. You can shrink it by 200Mb by 'gzipping' the kernel modules like this:
Code:
# for i in `find /lib/modules -type f -name '*.ko'`; do gzip $i; done
# depmod -a
- Also, the same trick reduces /usr/doc by a fair bit:
Code:
# for i in `find /usr/doc -type f`; do gzip $i; done
- If you deselect os-prober during installation, it causes the liloconfig script to crash. You can probably remove it after installation if you don't want to use the liloconfig script... But it's quite small.

- You could possibly remove these if you're just interested in having a functioning machine with networking but without remote access or automatic time synchronisation:
Code:
- sysklogd
- logrotate
- openssh
- openssl-solibs
- ntp
- glibc-zoneinfo
EDIT: Adding the ability to update via slackpkg.

This adds a bit of weight (~150Mb), but is probably well worth it.

Code:
a/bzip2
ap/slackpkg
d/perl
l/ncurses
n/ca-certificates
n/gnupg
n/openssl
n/wget
Next job on the list: Work out how to set this up as a VPN server.
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