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yanom 05-05-2011 05:37 PM

Basic distro for old hardware
 
I need a basic distro that will take up as little memory as possible. It needs to be relatively user-friendly, but I have a few year's experience in linux, so I know my way around a command line (for the most part).

TobiSGD 05-05-2011 05:48 PM

I have, out of curiosity, installed antiX with IceWM in a VM and came up with 36MB used after a fresh boot. Pretty lean I would say. It comes in i486 and i686 versions for older hardware (besides the 64 bit version) and is based on Debian. I also would recommend to give Vector Linux a try, it is based on Slackware and well known to run good on old hardware.
And of course there are the distros that run from RAM, like Tinycore (very small, but a little bit harder to install), Slitaz and Puppy Linux.

snowpine 05-05-2011 05:49 PM

What are your hardware specs?

I like SliTaz for very old hardware. Puppy, TinyCore, and DSL are also very popular all-in-one solutions for low-spec machines.

You could also do a "minimal install" of Slackware, Debian, Arch, Ubuntu, or really any of the major distros.

yanom 05-05-2011 06:05 PM

thanks for all the suggestions. I'll try them.

Arcane 05-05-2011 06:33 PM

Above mentioned + Absolute linux + Austrumi linux + Debian net install minimal then add fluxbox example.

jake3988 05-07-2011 06:08 PM

Do you mean ram memory or hard drive space?

If you mean ram, just install any ol' distro and then install a very light window manager like fluxbox. And you'll be good to go.

If you want minimal hard drive space, install gentoo, freebsd (not a linux, of course, but it's good), or ubuntu server edition.

All three prebuild their kernels but that's basically it. You then install everything else from scratch. It'll require getting a little down and dirty, but it's fun!

TobiSGD 05-07-2011 07:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jake3988 (Post 4349558)
just install any ol' distro

Please don't do that, almost all distros do not support older versions, which means you will have no security updates and bugfixes. You also will have problems to install newer software.
Use a recent version of a distro aimed towards older hardware or do a minimal install of a distro and build up the system from there.

k3lt01 05-07-2011 08:10 PM

+1 Tobi

Quote:

Originally Posted by jake3988 (Post 4349558)
If you want minimal hard drive space, install gentoo, freebsd (not a linux, of course, but it's good), or ubuntu server edition.

I wouldn't advocate installing Ubuntu Server Edition so you could obtain a basic distro for old hardware. If you want to use Ubuntu do a mini install and add what you need not a server install. Personally I'd stay away from Ubuntu because it's becoming "heavy" and the kernel has so much in it (ureadahead for example) that will slow down an old machine and make it virtually unusable. You're much better of doing a Debian mini and installing what you want.


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