Ideally would be able to make a bootable usb with a lightweight linux os which already included the bitcoin client.
LinuxCoin is such a distro (based on Debian).
Since LinuxCoin doesn't seem to updated very frequently, here are instructions for creating a custom bootable USB with the MCNLive distribution on it. You add whatever programs you want and it can then create a new .iso file for you to use for your USB.
BitSafe is an opensource Debian based lightweight live distro designed to provide a multilanguage, easy and secure live environment for Bitcoin.
It has a lot of innovative features like:
- Onscreen keyboard to thwart keyloggers
- Encrypted storage partition for wallet and client
- Tor tunneling capabilities
- Minimal number of applications and installed packages to reduce attack surface
Ubuntu is a most popular Debian fork have bitcoind package in official repository:
# dpkg -l bitcoind ii bitcoind 0.8.1-1 amd64 peer-to-peer network based digital currency - daemon
# aptitude show bitcoind Package: bitcoind State: installed Automatically installed: no Version: 0.8.1-1 Priority: optional Section: universe/utils Maintainer: Ubuntu Developers <email@example.com> Architecture: amd64 Uncompressed Size: 3,126 k Depends: libboost-filesystem1.49.0 (>= 1.49.0-1), libboost-program-options1.49.0 (>= 1.49.0-1), libboost-system1.49.0 (>= 1.49.0-1), libboost-thread1.49.0 (>= 1.49.0-1), libc6 (>= 2.15), libdb5.1++, libgcc1 (>= 1:4.1.1), libleveldb1, libminiupnpc8 (>= 1.6), libssl1.0.0 (>= 1.0.0), libstdc++6 (>= 4.6) Suggests: db-util, db4.8-util Conflicts: bitcoind Description: peer-to-peer network based digital currency - daemon Bitcoin is a free open source peer-to-peer electronic cash system that is completely decentralized, without the need for a central server or trusted parties. Users hold the crypto keys to their own money and transact directly with each other, with the help of a P2P network to check for double-spending. By default connects to an IRC network to discover other peers. Full transaction history is stored locally at each client. This requires several GB of space, slowly growing. This package provides bitcoind, a combined daemon and CLI tool to interact with the daemon. Homepage: http://www.bitcoin.org