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Old 08-25-2011, 05:59 AM   #1
ThatPerson
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Which distro is lightweight but can still be used for development?


I travel quite a lot, and so I use my netbook for developing most of my projects. It currently runs Ubuntu 10.10 which seemed snappy enough, however recently I have been noticing it slowing down. I have tried other distributions, but either I have found that they are too slow, or take up too much screen size (I have a 9" screen), or cannot do what I want. Also, as I am quite a newbie, I can use the command line to install applications, but I prefer things like Synaptic and Ubuntu Software Centre.

Also, my netbook currently boots in about a minute, and is there a way to keep Ubuntu yet speed it up, as I have seen some people boot it in about 15 seconds.
 
Old 08-25-2011, 06:03 AM   #2
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Minimal install ubuntu + Xfce. Or debian Xfce.

A minimal install ubuntu + Xfce is lighter than xubuntu-desktop, debian Xfce is lighter than minimal ubuntu + Xfce (depending on exactly what you do post-installing).
 
Old 08-25-2011, 06:17 AM   #3
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So if on my netbook I removed ubuntu-desktop and installed xfce (Not xubuntu-desktop to keep packages away) I should have a faster boot time?

I will think about doing that, especially as in my eyes Xubuntu and Ubuntu 10.10 look quite alike.
 
Old 08-25-2011, 06:43 AM   #4
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Well, I have Xubuntu running on a live CD, and it seems to be quite fast. One problem however is that it does not detect my bluetooth adapter, yet this could probably be fixed by installing a bluetooth manager. I will probably install it.
 
Old 08-26-2011, 03:46 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThatPerson View Post
So if on my netbook I removed ubuntu-desktop and installed xfce (Not xubuntu-desktop to keep packages away) I should have a faster boot time?
The boot to display manager time should be slightly faster (maybe slightly faster again if you have removed all the ubuntu-desktop packages). The time from dislplay manager to working desktop should be noticably faster.

Thats with the Xfce4 stuff running without added services like bluetooth managers. The more you add, the more needs to be loaded on booting, the slower booting happens. Dont let that put you off Xfce4 (or *buntu minimal installs), there are bound to be a few services you dont need running with ubuntu-desktop. Even if you loaded up all the services, etc. onto Xfce4 that came with ubuntu-desktop Xfce4 would still be a tiny bit ahead in booting times, etc. IMO.
 
Old 08-26-2011, 04:17 AM   #6
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I think that LXDE (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LXDE) based lubuntu is even somewhat faster than xfce based xubuntu.

My guess is that the GUI puts a constant load on processor and RAM. The more lightweight the GUI the more ressources available for the applications started from this GUI.

The disadvantage of the lightweight GUIs is that they obviously don't carry as much applets and integrated stuff as Gnome and KDE do.

When I started once not using Windows anymore as desktop at home, I installed FreeDSD on a laptop with a very small display and only 32 MB RAM (this was in the year 2000). I used Blackbox as window manager because of a very small task bar. Menus opended via the right mouse click.

The task bar in LXDE now carries much more but many utilities rely on KDE or on Gnome as environment. So, it depends mainly on your working style.

There are quite a lot of LXDE based distributions. I think every major distribution has also an LXDE variant.
 
Old 08-26-2011, 05:27 AM   #7
ThatPerson
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I did think about Lubuntu but found that I prefer Xfce ove Lxde because of the way it handles notifications and things. I am probably not going to install it for about a week, a faster SSD for my netbook is on the way.
 
Old 08-26-2011, 07:13 AM   #8
cascade9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dilbert_uk View Post
I think that LXDE (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LXDE) based lubuntu is even somewhat faster than xfce based xubuntu.
I wouldn't base an opinion on Lxde vs Xfce from lubuntu-desktop and xubuntu-desktop.

Xubuntu-desktop used to be very heavy (heavier than gnome in some ways). The newer versions are lighter, but still are farily heavy compared to some other distros Xfce4 version (or even the Xfce4 package).

You can easily see how many more packages, etc are included in xubuntu-desktop and lubuntu-desktop compared to the xfce4 and lxde ubuntu packages-

http://packages.ubuntu.com/natty/xfce4
http://packages.ubuntu.com/natty/xubuntu-desktop

http://packages.ubuntu.com/natty/lxde
http://packages.ubuntu.com/natty/lubuntu-desktop

Quote:
Originally Posted by dilbert_uk View Post
My guess is that the GUI puts a constant load on processor and RAM. The more lightweight the GUI the more ressources available for the applications started from this GUI.
It can do, depending on your video card/drivers.

If you've got a decent card from the last 10 years or so with hardware T&L and 32MB+ of RAM, the desktop GUI will be putting virtually no load on the CPU and RAM. If you've got a card with no hardware T&L, and/or using onboard RAM, and/or with poor drivers then the desktop GUI can have a speed impact.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThatPerson View Post
I am probably not going to install it for about a week, a faster SSD for my netbook is on the way.
That can make a huge impact to boot times. Good luck

Last edited by cascade9; 08-26-2011 at 07:34 AM.
 
  


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