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I'm interested in a Linux distro to build C projects and test their behavior in a very predictable and controlled environment. I'm especially concerned about letting the scheduler deal as much as possible with the threads in my application and not with other processes running in the background.

Size of the distro is not an issue (I don't have resource constraints)

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Why don't you go for a real-time operating system? If you have no need in a RTOS, you'll get no benefit from shopping for a distribution... – Deer Hunter Feb 24 '13 at 13:01
@DeerHunter Thank you for your suggestion. I haven't considered this option until now, but I will definitely give it a try. Would you recommend any RTOS? – Benny Feb 24 '13 at 13:14
Product recommendations are off-topic for StackExchange; yet I do not feel you really need a RTOS for building projects. Have you got hardware that would break up if computation is not done on time? Are you developing a HFT (high-frequency trading) rig? If not, you are better off not worrying about services, schedulers and nitty-gritty kernel details. – Deer Hunter Feb 24 '13 at 13:21
I do not have hardware that would break up if computation is not done on time. I am not developing a HFT. However, I do worry about the scheduler because its behavior is the main topic of my research. – Benny Feb 24 '13 at 19:23
up vote 4 down vote accepted

If you really want to do this, consider booting to single user mode (in just about any distribution) and running your test there.

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There are no distros with NO services running, as some are needed for the system to work. If you want to disable some, you can do it yourself. Some distros that would fit the bill are Arch, Slack or Gentoo. You can install minimal versions of the desktop distros (*buntu, Fedora...) but that would probably be more work.

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