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Old 01-06-2010, 02:34 PM   #1
kakawett
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Fastest Linux Distro / GUI for slow laptop


Hi guys.

I just receive a very thin laptop but pretty old, it has 2 hard drives or kind of hard drives... of 16 GB each, I don't know about the RAM, probably 512 Mb, maybe 1 Gb (I don't remember how to see that on windows) and an intel core duo.

It's currently running a legal windows xp (I specify legal cause it's pretty rare), it's not "slow" but it could be a lot faster, it still takes a few seconds to load IE and stuffs.

I'm a mac user, I'm only using debian server version for web servers and databases so I don't know how it works with a user interface.

I've heard about Archlinux, it says it's pretty fast but do you know which one is the fastest one ?

I'll be using the laptop for taking notes only, probably on google docs but it'd be cool if I could store some images and stuff without waiting 10 secs to open a new window.

By the way, if you could quickly explain me how do I install the GUI and which one is fastest cause when I've installed Ubuntu, Gnome was already installed by default.

Finally, there is no way to insert DVD / CDs, it's like the Mac Book Air, so I haven't installed any linux distro from a USB stick either.

Thanks in advance !
 
Old 01-06-2010, 02:56 PM   #2
repo
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puppy, dsl, debian with xfce .....
 
Old 01-06-2010, 04:16 PM   #3
rich_c
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I'm currently playing with antiX with LXDE added as per the instructions for adding it to a running Debian system. I'm testing it in virtualBox at the moment but indications are that it'll get installed on my 1ghz 512mb spare machine soon! I'm planning to use antiX M8.5 beta & then install LXDE from Debian testing.
 
Old 01-06-2010, 04:16 PM   #4
racepres
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kakawett View Post

I'm a mac user,
By all means look at MacPup linux! [google it]
your box will run it well.
I am wondering if perhaps the reason you see 2 drives is because of it having a "restore" partition? or are there physically 2 drives?
Anyway.. Good luck, and don't get all caught-up in installs till you make up your mind.. if you like macpup enough to use it some, just go ahead and "save" when you are done [reboot/shutdown] and follow the defaults, so you can boot-up to where you were w/ the cd again! If you change your mind about Macpup... just delete the saved file and be on your way...
RP

Last edited by racepres; 01-06-2010 at 04:18 PM.
 
Old 01-06-2010, 04:18 PM   #5
ngwasuma
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Ubuntu is the best for you!
 
Old 01-06-2010, 10:31 PM   #6
onebuck
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Hi,

Welcome to LQ!

It doesn't sound like a old laptop. Drives sound like 'SSD'.

I would suggest that you try a LiveCD from 'The LiveCD List' to test drive the laptop.


The above link and others can be found at 'Slackware-Links'. More than just SlackwareŽ links!
 
Old 01-06-2010, 11:08 PM   #7
craigevil
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That isn't a slow machine. Any distro will run just fine on it. The only thing that may cause issues is compiz and perhaps kde4 with the desktop effects running.But that depends more on what video card it has. Other than that any distro will run just fine.

Go to distrowatch.com and pick any distro in the top 10.

Seriously guys the OP said it has a Intel Core Duo and at least 512mb ram, any distro will fly on that. It doesn't need a light distro like puppy or dsl.

The processor is probably newer and faster than what I have on this crappy 6 yr old dell and Debian with lxde boots in under 30 seconds, apps like OpenOffice, Firefox, Gimp open pretty much instantly.

You do not need a system with quad cores and 8gb of ram to have a fast system with linux.

Quote:
My crappy Dell: Running Debian unstable with lxde.
$ inxi -F
System: Host craigevil Kernel 2.6.32-3.slh.1-sidux-686 i686 (32 bit) Distro Debian GNU/Linux squeeze/sid
CPU: Single core Intel Pentium 4 (UP) cache 1024 KB flags (sse3 nx lm) bmips 5585.43
Clock Speeds: (1) 2792.718 MHz (2) 2792.718 MHz
Graphics: Card Intel 82915G/GV/910GL Integrated Graphics Controller X.Org 1.6.5 Res: 1280x1024@60.0hz
GLX Renderer Mesa DRI Intel 915G GEM 20090712 2009Q2 RC3 x86/MMX/SSE2 GLX Version 1.4 Mesa 7.6.1 Direct Rendering Yes
Audio: Card Intel 82801FB/FBM/FR/FW/FRW (ICH6 Family) High Definition Audio Controller driver HDA Intel
Sound: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Version 1.0.21
Network: Card Intel 82562ET/EZ/GT/GZ - PRO/100 VE (LOM) Ethernet Controller driver e100 at port dcc0
Disks: HDD Total Size: 160.0GB (14.9% used) 1: /dev/sda 160.0GB
Partition: ID:/ size: 103G used: 23G (23%) fs: ext3 ID:swap-1 size: 5.25GB used: 0.00GB (0%) fs: swap
Info: Processes 112 Uptime 2:08 Memory 194.7/492.8MB Client Shell inxi 1.2.7
 
Old 01-07-2010, 12:59 AM   #8
kakawett
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wow I got a lot of answer that's cool

I don't personally think Ubuntu will run well on it because on the benchmark I've seen, it's asking at least 640 Mb of RAM and I don't know if I have more than 512.

For the LiveCD Option it's a good idea except that I don't have any cd driver

So I think I'm going to install Debian with Xfce.
I've checked out the doc a little bit so I just gotta install Debian like a regular server and apt-get install xfce4 right ?
 
Old 01-07-2010, 03:04 AM   #9
repo
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Quote:
I've checked out the doc a little bit so I just gotta install Debian like a regular server and apt-get install xfce4 right ?
Best is to use the netinstall, it will install a minimal system, then you can apt-get whatever you want/need.
 
Old 01-07-2010, 11:57 AM   #10
kakawett
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hmmm I've tried to install Debian so it's pretty cool the way we can install it from windows, I just booted on windows, launched the install.exe and then had to reboot... but when I reboot on the debian installer, it says it couldn't find any driver disk and it just doesn't install.

But I have no graphic card, no cd / dvd drives... so what, it just can't find the ethernet card ?

The only drivers that I have are for windows...

Any ideas ?
 
Old 01-07-2010, 03:26 PM   #11
m.pike1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ngwasuma View Post
Ubuntu is the best for you!
Ubuntu definitely isn't fast, it has alot of unneeded things. You are best off with something like Puppy, or Vector or DSL (slackware if your feeling brave). They take a "add what you need" approach rather than "here's everything you don't need, get rid of it if you want" that Ubuntu and fedora take. But with those specs you really don't need to worry about memory, I ran Fedora 10 since it was released up until a week ago on 512 memory and it never struggled at all, linux is very fast compared to window no matter what you get.
 
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:33 PM   #12
kakawett
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Not really, I've read my spec it really isn't good :

Windows XP Professional; 1GHz Intel Pentium M; 256MB DDR SDRAM 266MHz; Trident Video Accelerator Cyber-XP4 32MB; Toshiba MK4004GAH 40GB 4,200rpm


I don't know what to do, I've tried some tutorial but I don't understand what to install between networks,
 
Old 01-07-2010, 06:29 PM   #13
Electro
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Assuming the BIOS can boot from USB, I suggest add a external USB optical drive like the following.

PLEXTOR PX-610U
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16827249036

You can use almost any distribution. I suggest either Gentoo or ArchLinux. Both are similar. ArchLinux provides pre-compiled packages or you could start with a minimal install and then compile with pacman. When using Gentoo, you have no choice but to compile. Gentoo has a similar utility like pacman named emerge.

Loading up programs depends on the hard drive, so you could use a SSD like Intel's X-25 G2 drive. You may have to use a SATA to 44-pin IDE adapter, but it may not fit because the adapter adds more length that you may not have.

A Pentium M has plenty power to handle almost anything even with 256 MB of RAM. Your video card will limit how much your computer can do.
 
Old 01-07-2010, 09:35 PM   #14
stretchedthin
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I've always liked Vectorlinux for speed. Puppy is fast but it's not a full freatured OS in my opinion. Arch, is good as well, but the installation is trickier than most, but there is good documentation and I'm sure you could make a go of it. For my money though go with Vectorlinux. Here is a couple links to show you how the install process goes if you want to give Vec a try.

Here's how you can create any .iso into a bootable USB drive. Ignore the bit on installing Unetbootin on a Linux machine, as you are going to most likely be downloading and running the Windows version. The rest should be helpful though.

Using Unetbootin to create a Bootable USB drive of any Linux .iso

Once you've got Vec on the stick depending on which you choose Vector Standard or Vectorlinux light these tut's should help.

How to Install Vectorlinux 6.0 standard

How to install Vectorlinux using the text installer, either light or std.

How to install Vectorlinux light from the live cd.

Last edited by stretchedthin; 01-07-2010 at 09:38 PM.
 
Old 01-07-2010, 10:49 PM   #15
racepres
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stretchedthin View Post
I've always liked Vectorlinux for speed. Puppy is fast but it's not a full freatured OS in my opinion.
So, What do you recon is missing??
Mine works much better than the ubuntu that I erased !!
RP
 
  


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