a few general Linux configuration and tools questions

what is the minimum hard drive space for running Linux as a server?  is a P-90 with 840MB HD enough?  i only intend to run it for testing purposes, <10 connections at once.  

is Apache the standard server software or is there something better?  also, which Java VM (for Linux) is the most stable?  any recommendations on a good small footprint database?

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Yeah, I think you could fit a stripped down server on 840 meg. I doubt you'd have enough room for an X server and clients, but you don't need those just to run an Apache server and it's going to be your best bet in a non-commercial web server. It would be good, even for only a few clients to have a fair bit of memory, say 128Mb, especially if you also intend to run a database.

You may not be aware, but there is now an "official Sun" Java 1.2 JDK & JRE for Linux. Either that or the IBM 1.1.8 version would be my choice.

As to a database, I'm rather partial to postgres, but Msql and Mysql are also quite popular. Any of them should prove satisfactory.

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840MB is more than enough for your purpose. I'd say it is possible to squeeze everything you need into 400-500MB (even X, if you need it).

Java: Besides the other ones mentioned, kaffe is supposed to work fine. I don't have any personal experience with it, though.

Apache is the standard, more than half of the Internet runs on it.
glow060197Author Commented:
what distribution do you think i should try?  i have a "Red Hat" that came with an introductory book, and it claims that I need 1600MB for a server configuration, not even using Apache (I don't think...) or a DB...

I can let the DB go for now, until I get a better machine but I need Apache (or something) to serve Web pages still, right?  Or is there a basic server built in?
RH 6.1 is fine, you don't want a "Server Install", that's going to get too much for your purposes. What you want is basically a workstation install with out any of the X support and without most of the apps but with a few other things, like wu-ftp, apache, php, and a DB. Unfortunately, that's not one of the standard options, so you'll need to do a "Custom" install and pick and choose. It may take a few tries to get it right, but it can be done (and you'll probably learn quite a bit in the process).
glow060197Author Commented:
thanks a lot.  i guess it's time to try it.
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