Often we are asked by VPS clients utilizing the FreeBSD operating system, how can they trim down the kernel in order to utilize the full memory footprint potential.
Without getting into too much detail, here are several things that we usually “omit” from the kernel options during make buildworld / buildkernel to provide for a 60-70% kernel footprint reduction in 7.1-PRERELEASE :
makeoptions DEBUG=-g # Build kernel with gdb(1) debug symbols
options MSDOSFS # MSDOS Filesystem
# Wireless NIC cards
device wlan # 802.11 support
device wlan_wep # 802.11 WEP support
device wlan_ccmp # 802.11 CCMP support
device wlan_tkip # 802.11 TKIP support
device wlan_amrr # AMRR transmit rate control algorithm
device wlan_scan_ap # 802.11 AP mode scanning
device wlan_scan_sta # 802.11 STA mode scanning
device an # Aironet 4500/4800 802.11 wireless NICs.
device ath # Atheros pci/cardbus NIC’s
device ath_hal # Atheros HAL (Hardware Access Layer)
device ath_rate_sample # SampleRate tx rate control for ath
device awi # BayStack 660 and others
device ral # Ralink Technology RT2500 wireless NICs.
device wi # WaveLAN/Intersil/Symbol 802.11 wireless NICs.
#device wl # Older non 802.11 Wavelan wireless NIC.
device ural # Ralink Technology RT2500USB wireless NICs
device rum # Ralink Technology RT2501USB wireless NICs
You can remove more ,but that should reduce your kernel size significantly. You should be able to recompile the kernel as per the FreeBSD documentation