Damn Small Linux

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This page is one of a number of pages which reference related small systems from which the OLPC has borrowed ideas, or may borrow ideas in the future.


Damn Small Linux (DSL) is a very versatile 50MB mini desktop oriented Linux distribution.

Damn Small is small enough and smart enough to do the following things:

  • Boot from a business card CD as a live linux distribution (LiveCD)
  • Boot from a USB pen drive
  • Boot from within a host operating system (that's right, it can run *inside* Windows)
  • Run very nicely from an IDE Compact Flash drive via a method we call "frugal install"
  • Transform into a Debian OS with a traditional hard drive install
  • Run light enough to power a 486DX with 16MB of Ram
  • Run fully in RAM with as little as 128MB (you will be amazed at how fast your computer can be!)
  • Modularly grow -- DSL is highly extendable without the need to customize
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