Lightest Linux edition for Virtual Private Server
I want to take a VPS and need to choose the OS. I have to put there my website, usual php/mysql website, also will need FTP. Will not need any other services. I want to choose the version that have the lowest system requirements - mainly RAM and CPU usage: here is the available list
CentOS 5 (x86_64/x86)
CentOS 6 Minimal (x86_64/x86)
CentOS 6 (x86_64/x86)
Debian 6.0 (x86_64/x86)
Debian 7.0 (x86_64/x86)
Fedora 16 (x86_64/x86)
Fedora 17 (x86_64/x86)
Fedora 18 (x86_64/x86)
Fedora 19 (x86_64/x86)
Scientific 6 (x86_64/x86)
SUSE 12.3 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 10.04 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 11.04 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 11.10 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 12.04 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 12.10 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 13.04 (x86_64/x86)
Ubuntu 13.10 (x86_64/x86)
Then ... for just a little private web server, even though peppered with PHP and maybe mySQL, as you describe it, you'll probably want a command-line-only installation with no GUI and no desktop. Considering that, Fedora, Ubuntu and SUSE are out of the game, AFAIS.
I don't know anything about CentOS (other than that it exists), and I neither know Scientific Linux, other than by name. Among the others, I'd recommend you to go for Debian. It's very widespread, has lots of supporting resources on the net, and is generally considered very mature and stable.
Oh, and believe me: You may not be planning to use any other services now, but in a while, you will. You might want the machine to act as a little file server, so you're going to install Samba. You may wish to add a DBMS (I already mentioned it in passing), so you'll probably install mySQL. You may think that this box, once it's runnig fine, might step in as a local mail server. And a few things more.
This is no problem; any halfway contemporary PC has enough resources to do all that in a SOHO environment. Just go ahead! :-)
[X] Doc CPU
Doc CPU, thanks for your detailed response, it gave me a plenty of info, appreciate that. About the GUI part, I understand that without desktop environment it will use less resources, and, I did not use SUSE or Fedora, but about Ubuntu, will it be a solution, if I run it in command-line mode only, as it is described in here
or it will not work, if I want to host a website on it ?
That worked last I looked at Ubuntu (a while ago). Doesn't save the disk space X occupies, but will surely be lighter on CPU.
The systemd distros have a similar mode of operation of course, but it is achieved differently.
I know that a Debian minimal install without GUI needs less than a gigabyte of disk space, and only consists of a moderate number of installed packages. So there's only little substance that needs updating regularly.
Maybe such a minimal install is possible with one of the other distros as well, but I can't tell for sure. That's why I voted for Debian.
[X] Doc CPU
listing UNSUPPORTED versions of fedora and ubuntu
is not good
DO NOT !!! use dead and unsupported operating systems !!!!
fedora 16,17,18 are all UNSUPPORTED and 19 will be soon
and you forgot about the CURRENT version Fedora 20
also fedora is not a good choice for a server
it is a "research and development" operating system
the now starting to age Opensuse 12.3
also is not the CURRENT , It is still supported but not the current version
that is OpenSUSE 13.1
and novell is VERY WELL KNOWN for being rather BLOATED
OpenSUSE and SELD are GUI centric and script ran and as such are VERY bloated
Novell through in everything , including the kitchen sink , and for good measure they also tossed in YOUR neighbors kitchen sink .
it is not a "lite" distro
the current CentOS 6.5 or Debian 7 are a good choice
Could build what you want at SuseStudio. You start off with a very basic OS and even have to add in some common tools.
Might as well look at turnkey linux while you are at it.
The most minimal would be one that you built and had only the drivers needed and kernel settings without any extra fluff.
Guys, thank you all for your support and advice, I appreciate that. Based on all what was said, also just in case trying Debian in VM, to be sure Im comfortable with that, decided to choose that one. Thank you all !!! :)
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