Tiny disk image, big machine for developer VM
I have a need to generate a small-disk-image non-gui 64-bit Linux VM to be run on Mac, Linux or Windows. The current target host is a MacBook Pro with 8g, and that will only go up as time goes by, but for now each of the developers has at least that hardware. The VM guest will be a generic PC-compatible 64-bit Intel box.
I need to run Sun/Oracle Java 6 (non-free) 64-bit, grails 1.3.7, mysql-5.1, sshd and bash, full ipv4/ipv6 support for a normal client. Multiple core support would be a big plus, big memory is necessary.
I don't think I need a system logger, or authentication. Maybe I need cron, not sure if that's really a system requirement or not. If I could find some tiny distro that would fit, a C compiler would not be necessary.
If I could make a simple gui then I would throw that on too, maybe blackbox or something, but I think it will be too big.
The goal is to make a VM whose external image when shut down is 1g or less for the Linux overhead, more for the extra junk we put on. We set it up, get our build working on it and then shut it down, and probably burn the image onto a DVD for posterity. Or transfer it to or from some server or some laptop over the Internet.
This will be a build-and-forget system, although we will keep the basic image for future similar installations. We are developing custom software on the Java platform. Each customer has a slightly (or not-so-slightly) different build. We've been tagging this in source control, but the problem is we get the customer coming back for a change two years after the installation, and we no longer have a development environment for them at that point. We have the source, just not a working build environment.
Does somebody know of a tiny distro that already can accomplish this? I'm on the verge of trying to build it with Gentoo, but I would like a low-maintenance solution.
Help stamp out MBR partition tables. Use GPT instead!