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Im looking for a distro of linux around 1 gig... I am going to set it up as a router, but since it'll be my only linux box for a while, I was going to put mandrake on it so I could also play around with linux and learn some crap... but I noticed mandrake was 3 cds.. anything u recoment thats around a 1 gig install? its a 2.4 gig HD and I want ATLEAST 500 megs to mess around with. and a 500 meg swap... so I need something around 1 gig install :-D thanx.
would debian be good?
What I would recomend is using a RHEL clone (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) like White Box or Cent. Durring the install, just select custom and slim it way way way down. You should be able to get it to fit and give you some space. You could for sure get it to function as a router (I asume you mean DHCP client) and than maybe squeeze on a small GUI even.

Otherwise there are options like Penut Linux, but I have never used those.
I've heard of one called "Damn Small Linux," but I don't know how small it is.
You can go check it out, their websight is just Its tiny, but that just means it doesn't have a lot. I think your best bet is to go with a RHEL clone so that you have a good slolid, stable, secure, DHCP server, than just try to get on what ever other toys you can and be happy.
You might consider Vector. Its lightweight and appears to install in about 350 MB.
Its on my list of distros to checkout.
Vector is good ... but I like the RHEL clones as well. (Gets fast security updates ... long lifetimes ... what is used in the enterprise ... etc.)

You can do a non-GUI firewall / DHCP server with about 500-600mb with the default install.

I use this as my firewall ... on a Minimal install of CentOS 3.1 or WBEL.

Here is a minimal install guide for CentOS / WBEL.
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