A (very) long time ago, I came across a 50mb MySQL appliance - a gentoo-based build that has "virtualappliances.net" on its management page, although these days that URL has no webserver attached to it.
Thus I was thinking of the roll-your-own approach. To start with, is there a VMware image that has:
* bloat removed, preferably <100mb in size
* vmware tools installed (and the related drivers for network, memory reclaim, etc)
* don't mind which Linux flavour, but preferably a recent release
* suitable for VMware Server
* no applications installed (e.g. not a LAMP image)