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If there was and distribution without any lisp packages bundled, I'd probably use that.

@mrb there are, e.g. GNU Zile, microemacs (mg emacs clone)

@tetrislife those seem to be /like/ emacs, but not emacs repackaged. Or am I missing something?

@mrb I thought you didn't want the packages that come with Emacs? Those clones don't.

Blasphemy: try kakoune, which takes the vi model further and implements it in a contemporary user-friendly way, plus it tries to work well with external programs rather than implement external functionality in an extension language.

@tetrislife ah, i formulated wrong perhaps.

I *do* want those packages, or at least quite a few of them, but having them distributed with just complicates things in the long run. (for me at least)

I'd rather have a package-less distro, or minimal, and manage package installation myself (just as I do now, but without having to worry about emacs taking the /internal/ version)

@mrb got it. Now that you said it, I too want that "#Emacs kernel".

The justification for shipping and enabling by default might be existing written content out there that predates packages and doesn't mention how to install the packages written about.

Why not use a copy of the #Elisp directory but with all files replaced with symlinks to /dev/null? It could achieve your purpose to have a "kernel", and some simple elisp hooks might suffice to really load package Elisp code.

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