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Old 03-19-2007, 04:14 PM   #1
FWSquatch
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Registered: Jan 2006
Location: Fort Worth, TX
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Distro for an ancient laptop?


I inherited a really old laptop and I want to try to convert it into a digital picture frame. It is an NEC Versa 4000C. It's got a Pentium at 75 mHz, 16 MB of RAM and about 800 MB on the hard drive. This model has a swappable floppy and cd rom drive, but I've only got the floppy. It's got 2 PCMCIA slots but no USB or built in modem/ethernet ports. I've tried putting Tiny Linux on it but have had problems. I'll elaborate on that if you guys think that is the way to go. I'd like to do a net install but I can't get either of the distros (Tiny Linux and Debian)I've tried to find the PCMCIA network card. Any suggestions? Is it worth trying or would I be better off kicking this pile to the curb?
 
Old 03-19-2007, 05:00 PM   #2
camorri
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You could try DSL on the old lappy. You can do a HD install, if you can figure out a way to load it without a CDrom. That is the first hurdle. DSL will fit very nicely on the drive. It has a light weight desktop, a necessity for a slow machine.

The second, is a network card. I have an old Compaq, it sounds a little newer than your clunker, and has 16 bit PCMCIA bus. The new ones are 32 bit. So, this means wireless cards are out. Some stores may have a 16 bit card kicking around. I would check out NEC's web site and see if you can dig up the specs first, before you spend a nickel on it.

If you can't figure out how to install, or the network part, give it the big boot to the curb.

Just my opinion, I'm sure you will get a few more...
 
Old 03-21-2007, 06:36 AM   #3
jacook
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Vector Linux
http://www.vectorlinux.com/

DSL
http://www.damnsmalllinux.org/

Puppy Linux
http://www.puppylinux.org/user/viewpage.php?page_id=3

Slackware
http://www.slackware.com/

SLAX Live CD
http://www.slax.org/

BeaFanatIX
http://bea.cabarel.com/

Elive:
http://www.elivecd.org/

Deli
http://delili.lens.hl-users.com/

Luit Linux
http://luitlinux.sarovar.org/
 
Old 03-21-2007, 09:32 AM   #4
muddywaters
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16 MB ram is really scraping by, if you can find more for cheap it would help a bunch.

This thread got my old P133 Dell running, no cdrom whatsoever.
http://damnsmalllinux.org/cgi-bin/fo...5;t=14925;st=0

There are a couple of minor typos in JBHorens post. I'll post to that thread later today to point them out. Also ping something else than his website, it's MIA.

Edit/ Ah, I see now you have no network card. Those have to be near free by now. Or even borrow one. You only need it once right?

Last edited by muddywaters; 03-21-2007 at 03:24 PM.
 
Old 03-21-2007, 09:55 PM   #5
FWSquatch
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Thanks for the replies. I'll be checking all of that stuff out. I do have a PCMCIA network card, I just was having problems getting the Tiny Linux and Debian installers to find it. By the way, I was able to take the HD out and can read it with this fancy PCMCIA card thing that my bro in law got with a laptop HD cloning kit. I tried an install of DSL on it and it looked like everything was going fine, but when it said to take out the CD and reboot to finish the install, I got stuck. I rebooted, but couldn't get the laptop to boot off the external drive to finish the install. I assume that using this device can make this whole thing easier, but I'm not sure where to go with it.
 
Old 03-25-2007, 12:19 PM   #6
bobby_hawk
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Location: Columbus, Ohio
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On my older laptop is an IBM Thinkpad 380ED, 91megs RAM, 3 Gig drive. I have only been successful loading RH9 and Slackware 10.1 from floopies. The unit is fast with a char-text interface and not worth loading a GUI. It has been a great learning linux machine.

Bob


Quote:
Originally Posted by camorri
You could try DSL on the old lappy. You can do a HD install, if you can figure out a way to load it without a CDrom. That is the first hurdle. DSL will fit very nicely on the drive. It has a light weight desktop, a necessity for a slow machine.

The second, is a network card. I have an old Compaq, it sounds a little newer than your clunker, and has 16 bit PCMCIA bus. The new ones are 32 bit. So, this means wireless cards are out. Some stores may have a 16 bit card kicking around. I would check out NEC's web site and see if you can dig up the specs first, before you spend a nickel on it.

If you can't figure out how to install, or the network part, give it the big boot to the curb.

Just my opinion, I'm sure you will get a few more...

Last edited by bobby_hawk; 03-25-2007 at 12:20 PM.
 
  


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