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So, here's what I've gathered so far (yes I'm still reading all the replies
to this post):

Given that I am willing to spend the time learning Gentoo's functionality,
it's probably the best to play with.

I think that's what I'm aiming at.

What I intend to do in the long run is to take the results of what I learn
here and use them as a full machine, as opposed to a VM.

So, given that I find out exactly what I need and works best for me
personally in this VM, I will then use that as a basis for how to build
production servers.

If I understand what I've read correctly, Gentoo would be good for that,
yes?

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