What is Cygwin?
According to the Cygwin website, "The Cygwin tools are ports of the popular GNU development tools and utilities for Windows. They function by using the Cygwin library which provides a UNIX-like API on top of the Win32 API. More info..."

What is Cygwin-Lite?
Cygwin-Lite is a subset of the Cygwin tools. The self-executing setup file is designed to fit on a 1.44MB floppy disk, and thus to overcome a limitation of the Cygwin environment---its size (my current installation is around 80MB).

Which tools exactly are included?
All the ones listed in the details. If you're wondering about find, gzip, grep, less, or tar, they're all there. Note that since vim now depends on ncurses, there is no longer a text editor included. You'll have to get the full Cygwin.

Why bother?
I began to look into a smaller installation when working on computer-lab Windows machines from only a small amount of network space (about 5MB). Batch files simply weren't effective, and more isn't less. I discovered that most of my favorite Cygwin tools took up only a small amount of disk space, but since the Cygwin setup.exe uses "packages" it lacked the versatility to perform a minimal install. I also see applications for dial-up bound Windows users who want a *nix shell.

How do Cygwin and Cgywin-Lite interact on the same computer?
Cygwin-Lite is really just a type of Cygwin installation. All the files in Cygwin-Lite are present in a complete Cygwin install, except the scripts in /src and the HTML man pages in /html. Since cygwin1.dll makes use of the Windows registry for its mount table, one cannot install two Cygwin installations (including Cygwin-Lite) to different directories on the same system. Cygwin-Lite will not overwrite a user's home directory if installed over a previous installation. Also, Cygwin-Lite can be updated with the setup.exe utility like any Cygwin installation.

How do I get a minimal installation of Cygwin?
There have been several messages about this on the Cygwin mailing list. Earnie Boyd posted a helpful list a while back:, though you should note that since vim 6.0 came out it depends on the gettext and ncurses packages. Also, the native Windows version of rxvt is superior to working in the MS-DOS window. Use it with a shortcut like: C:\cygwin\bin\rxvt.exe -rv -e c:\cygwin\bin\bash --login -e

Why does your installer look like WinAmp?
Nullsoft, the makers of WinAmp, created an installer called NSIS (Nullsoft SuperPIMP Installation System). Cygwin-Lite uses NSIS because it is small, flexible, and Free (zlib/libpng licence). The file /src/bash.nsi can be used with the makensis.exe utility from NSIS for building your own self-executable based on Cygwin-Lite.

Where's the source code?
The only "source code" for Cygwin-Lite is a few install scripts and the bitmaps used by the self-executable. They can be found in the /src directory after installing or downloaded here. Since the main goal of this project is small size, I do not include the sources from the individual projects (Cygwin, NSIS). You may download the full source of the Cygwin packages here (currently about 17MB), or use Cygwin's setup.exe to download them from a mirror site. Contact me if you have trouble finding them.

Copyright (C) 2001 Joshua Daniel Franklin
Cygwin-Lite is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.