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I downloaded the CentOS Minimal .iso file from CentOS' web site and then created a USB drive via some tool by Fedora, I believe.

I booted up the PC and installed CentOS Minimal, it was flawless, no errors.

Then I simply ran

ifup eth0

which activates my ethernet internet. Then I ran

yum -y groupinstall "Desktop" "Desktop Platform" "X Window System" "Fonts"

but it took a long time to download and install, as it was like close to 470+ packages.

Is it possible to somehow store all these packages to a folder or something in the same USB so I do not have to resort to downloading them if I do a reinstall?

How can this be done?

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The easiest way is not to start with the 'minimal' iso. – terdon Sep 2 '13 at 13:28
  • Make a full backup of your system and restore it over a new minimal installation.
  • Duplicate your disk by using dd:

    dd if=/dev/sda | gzip -c  > /sda_image.img.gz 

    And restore it to a new disk if needed

    gunzip -c /sda_image.img.gz | dd of=/dev/sda

DD images your disk and it is the best way to backup your system configuration

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