Stripping: Though many distributions come with stripped binaries today
it is useful to check this. For details see man
strip. To find every unstripped file you can use the
file command or more convenient the tool
findstrip. Attention: don't strip libraries,
sometimes the wrong symbols are removed due to a bad programming
technique. Or use the --strip-unneeded option.
Perforation: zum(1) reads a file list on stdin and
attempts to perforate these files. Perforation means, that series of
null bytes are replaced by lseek, thus giving the
file system a chance of not allocating real disk space for those bytes.
Example: find . -type f | xargs zum
Remove Odd Files and Duplicates: Check your system for core files, emacs
recovery files <#FILE#> vi recovery files <FILE>.swp, RPM
recovery files <FILE>.rpmorig and patch
recovery files. Find duplicates, you may try finddup.
Choose a system to name your backup, temporary and test files, e.g. with
a signature at the end.
Clean Temporary Files: , e.g.
/tmp, there is even a
Shorten the Log Files: usually the files in
You may use logrotate to achieve this task.
Remove Files: Remove files which are not "necessary" under all
circumstances such as man pages, documentation
/usr/doc and sources e.g.
Unnecessary Libraries: You may use the binstats
package to find unused libraries (Thanks to Tom Ed White).
Filesystem: Choose a filesystem which treats disk space economically
e.g. rsfs. Tune your filesystem e.g.
tune2fs. Choose an appropriate partition and block
Reduce Kernel Size: Either by using only the necessary kernel features
and/or making a compressed kernel image bzImage.
Compression: I didn't check this but as far as I know you may compress
your filesystem with gzip and decompress it on the
fly. Alternatively you may choose to compress only certain files. You
can even execute compressed files with zexec
- For e2fs filesystems there is a compression version available
which enables your machine to access Windows95 compressed drives
(drivespace, doublestacker). If you don't need DOS/Windows95
compatibility, i.e. if you want to compress Linux-only data, this is
really discouraged by the author of the program.
Partition Sharing: You may share swap-space (see
data partitions between different OS (see mount).
For mounting MS-DOS Windows95 compressed drives (doublespace,
drivespace) you may use dmsdos
Libraries: Take another (older) library, for instance
libc5 , this library seems to be smaller than
libc6 also known as glibc2 .
Kernel: If your needs are fitted with an older kernel version, you can
save some space.
GUI: Avoid as much Graphical User Interface (GUI) as possible.
Tiny Distributions: There are some distributions available which fit
from one 3.5" floppy to 10MB disk space and fit for small memories, too. See
Appendix A, Other Operating Systems Appendix D
External Storage Devices (Hard Disks, ZIP Drives, NFS, SAMBA): Since
many notebooks may be limited in their expandability, using the parallel
port is an attractive option. There are external hard disks and ZIP
Drives available. Usually they are also connectable via
PCMCIA. Another way is using the resources of another
machine through NFS or SAMBA etc.
Purging of uneeded locales:
localepurge for Debian
is just a simple script to recover disk space wasted for unneeded
locale files and localized man pages. Depending on your installation, it
is possible to save some 200, 300, or even more megabytes of disk space
usually dedicated for locales you'll probably never have any usage for.