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I want to install FreeBSD to run a squid cache server on it. I want to know how can I can make this installation as small as possible?

I installed the boot-only ISO file on virtual box, but it took around 600 megabytes. By the way it is an old machine so I want it work in this minimum size.

Is there any script to download just the needed files and which file system is the best for squid cache holding partition?

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You are right, even with minimal installation, the current FreeBSD requires a minimum of 600 MB, especially if you go for a amd64 release.

There is still some options left:

  • Using an "old" 7.x or 8.x (i386) release

    I tried to install an "old" 7.3 (i386) with everything to minimal and it took 270 MB.

    Assuming your machine is old enough, you will not care about a 64 bits system and maybe this old (but sturdy) system would be small enough for your needs.

  • Installing a NanoBSD

    This is a way of generating a bare-minimal system image from a living one.

    You will choose exactly what to keep, but this is no ordinary click-type installtion. Here is the procedure to build a NanoBSD (and this is still up-to-date).

  • Using a specialized system (pfSense, m0n0Wall, ...)

    There are some specialized FreeBSD based systems which are more or less able to run a squid for caching (in fact they are also based on a NanoBSD). Here are some examples:

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