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Old 07-18-2009, 07:08 AM   #1
Coburn64
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Question Help choosing a distro for a 300Mhz Geode i586 PC?


Hello all.

Some time ago, I purchased two NeoWare thin client terminals from eBay.

The first one was a Geode i586, running at 300Mhz and the other was a speedy VIA C3 running at 800Mhz.

Using the VIA one as a IRC Bouncer at home (that I connect to while I'm abroad), I turned my attention to the Geode-powered PC.

Sure, it's old, and only manages to complete Puppy Linux's Benchmarks and due to be tossed out, I thought "Hey, why not set this little baby up as a server for my personal blog?".

I like to recycle old technology until it gives up the ghost, not just go and purchase a new server.

Anyway, back to my question: Do you have any suggestions for a distro I can install on this, or should I roll my own distro?

It's currently got a 48MB DiskOnModule as the Hard Disk, 96MB RAM, and it cannot boot from USB. LAN Booting (PXE) is successful as I tried it a few days ago.

I was thinking of Debian, but it's a hog (512MB HDD at the minimum for Sarge?). Also, I tried some floppy disk linux distros, they are quite nice, but I don't know how I could install them onto the HDD.

So, what are your thoughts? I'm thinking of getting a 256MB DiskOnModule from Ebay for about $30, so linux has some room to move around in. If I were to roll my own distro, how hard would it be?

Cheers!
 
Old 07-18-2009, 07:14 AM   #2
linus72
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Welcome to LQ Coburn64!
I'm no expert on that area, thin clients
but there are alot of distro's to choose from
so, our restrictions are 96mb ram?

some distro's don't need hd,
but have tried a bootmanager to boot usb??

300mhz and 96mb ram right?
 
Old 07-18-2009, 07:28 AM   #3
Coburn64
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Thanks for the warm welcome, linus72!

Yeah, 300Mhz and 96MB of RAM, that's mainly the limitations. Mind you, the system uses a 64MB Laptop SO-DIMM (some weird pin setup, not laptop DDR) plus a SD-RAM slot for RAM.

I've got a extra 32MB stick in there to help it along, but my 64MB SD-RAM stick went bad, so yeah.

Oh, and the PC only has one IDE slot, so it's either the DiskOnModule in that slot or a 40Pin cable to a CD Drive. (I did install FreeDOS on it the other day, wait a minute... this is not a DOS forum... :P)

Despite the lack of SD-RAM availability nowadays, I'm sure we can work around these limitations.
 
Old 07-18-2009, 07:38 AM   #4
linus72
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well
tinycore/microcore-2.1+ are good, need 48mb ram to boot
you may be able to even get opera+flash10+OSS
but with 96mb that's it

you wanna use the tcz extensions, not the tce's

if you add hd space the new Sidux-2009-02-xfce may work, especially if you
install fluxbox/openbox
debian xfce is lowest ram xfce, but maybe 96mb ram not enough...

what distro's are you experienced with?
 
Old 07-18-2009, 07:43 AM   #5
linus72
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I'm pretty retarded at reading these things, but if not mistaken
sidux is using 78mb of ram?
maybe it's using 350mb ram??
But I have 768mb ram so?

Code:
root@sidux:/home/sidux# free
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:        774796     350168     424628          0      37576     234596
-/+ buffers/cache:      77996     696800
Swap:      2273156          0    2273156
I can make a tinycore-2.1 zip real quick with minimal apps
and upload it for you to download

if no opera, etc
maybe dillo2, etc

are you comfortable with "low-end" web browesers?

Last edited by linus72; 07-18-2009 at 07:44 AM.
 
Old 07-18-2009, 06:40 PM   #6
Coburn64
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Sounds good. Since it's going to be a server, I'll do a list of apps and PM them to you. Thanks!

I'm used to 'lite' browsers, like Links and such.

I have a variety of distros that I'm filimar with including ZipSlack, Ubuntu, Puppy Linux, DSL (only a bit due to the 2.4 kernel hating my laptop) and some others including floppy disk linuxes.

Last edited by Coburn64; 07-18-2009 at 06:42 PM. Reason: Corrections
 
Old 07-18-2009, 06:46 PM   #7
linus72
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Cool thing is dude tinycore IS the new DSL
works almost the same but better
( http://distrowatch.com/weekly.php?is...090323#feature )
 
Old 07-18-2009, 10:48 PM   #8
Coburn64
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Alright, I've sent you a email, linus72.

I'll try your "awesome" Tiny Core Linux. Let's see if this 300Mhz PC rockets.
 
Old 07-18-2009, 10:50 PM   #9
linus72
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alright, I'll check it out...
oh, where you send the message/?

Last edited by linus72; 07-18-2009 at 10:52 PM.
 
Old 07-19-2009, 06:18 AM   #10
Coburn64
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I sent it to your email address, using the email form.

I couldn't find the PM function anywhere unless my browser (Google Chrome) was hiding it on me.
 
  


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