Best Minimalist OS for VMPlayer?

Shane Hathaway shane at
Sun Sep 10 20:13:16 MDT 2006

Alex Esplin wrote:
> On 9/10/06, Levi Pearson <levi at> wrote:
>> There are a number of ways you could go about this, depending on how
>> much effort you want to put into it.  To really minimize the
>> resources needed by the host OS, you could build a minimal Linux
>> system with only the libraries necessary for VMWare installed.  I'm
>> not sure exactly what its requirements are these days, but you could
>> possibly have just busybox, an X server, a lightweight window
>> manager, and a lightweight terminal.
> You could start with an Ubuntu server install, which is pretty
> minimal, and as Levi said, add the necessary dependencies for VMWare.
> Another option would be to build a Gentoo system for it, which would
> probably be smaller and less resource intensive than the Ubuntu
> system, and if you're lucky, there might be something in Portage that
> would get most/all of the dependencies for you.

Once the base system is running, "emerge vmware-player" ought to bring 
in everything you need.

> Using -O2 or -Os in
> your make.conf could result in a small yet responsive Gentoo system
> with a minimal number of extraneous processes from which to host your
> VMWare OS's.

Well, other distributions also use -O2 by default.  Although I prefer 
Gentoo, I think it's sometimes actually a little slower than SUSE.  The 
main reason I prefer Gentoo is because it lets me upgrade progressively 
rather than wait for 6-18 month cycles.


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