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brucie888 11-22-2005 08:09 PM

Linux for an old under-resourced Pentium 2
 
I AM A NEWBIE. PLEASE BE GENTLE WITH ME.
Now, I acquired a copy of Mandrakelinux 10.2 (Kernel 2.6, KDE 3.2, X.Org X11 6.7) which is optimized for installation on a Pentium 4 computer. I attempted to install it on an old HP Pentium 2 computer (256MB RAM, 4 GB hard disk) because that's all I have available right now. It was my very first Linux install!! I had to limit the install to the first CD of the 3-CD set because the computer choked on the 3 CDs on the first two install attempts.
The installation was less than successful, though surprisingly I have a lot of useful functionality.
But I have truncated functionality in important applications. For example, I have no Firefox, only Konqueror: GMail hates Konqueror and with its use disallows all features except reading my mail and composing mail. It tells me to revisit with a better-supported browser. So I've begrudgingly switched to Yahoo Mail where Konqueror is welcome.
I think I need an older Linux distribution which was optimized to run on a Pentium 2. Any suggestions?

Alien123 11-22-2005 08:19 PM

You may want to try Vector linux.. I'm not sure but I think that it was designed for older computers and can run on systems that do not have much for resources, I used it a while ago and I liked it. I had it installed on an old P3 450Mhz and it ran pretty fast. I don't know what the new version is like but it is probably worth to check out.

Other than that, for a newbie.. Ubuntu is quite easy to use and is only 1 cd. Also, to speed things up you might want to try running a different window manager. KDE isn't the best for systems low on resources. Maybe Fluxbox or something like that. Good luck. :)

kilgoretrout 11-22-2005 08:30 PM

Vector linux is designed for older hardware:

http://www.vectorlinux.com/index.php

Vector is pretty light weight and should do fine with 256MB of ram on a P2. You can also take a look at Damn Small Linux(DSL) and Puppy Linux. Both of them have lightweight window managers( i.e. not kde or gnome which require a lot of memory) and are optimized to run on older hardware.

bosewicht 11-22-2005 08:38 PM

even slack or debian would work as well. Justtry to stay away from gnome or kde. If you do choose vector, don't get the soho versions, they use beefy desktops(gnome, kde)

Charred 11-22-2005 09:37 PM

I concur. Try Vector standard.

gdivens51 11-22-2005 10:48 PM

running Libranet 2.7 Classic on a Pentium 2 400mhz 384MB ram with very old HDD (33 speed) & it is surprisingly fast with the XFCE window manager. Konqueror, Netscape , Mozilla , Galeon browsers. Several window manager choices.

Bluenoser 11-23-2005 12:14 AM

I have a P166/32mb ram/2.5GB hard drive running Slackware mostly as a web server but it works pretty good with fluxbox, even has Firefox ;)

albierte 07-25-2008 10:18 PM

Pentium 2 upgrade to Linux
 
Upgrading an old Pentium 2 computer is an easy task. All you have to do is upgrade the Hard Drive to at leas 80Gibabyte. You might also want to upgrade the RAM to at least 256 Megabyte(RAM). I just upgraded my Pentium 2 to a 100 Gig Hard drive and 2 Gig of RAM (memory).
The best choice for a Linux Distribution is Ubuntu Linux (Breezy Badger). Or you could play with a Slackware Linux. The list goes on after you changed the Hard Drive and the Memory (RAM).
Once you made the change to the hardware and installed a Linux OS, the sky is the limit. You can do whatever you want with your old computer. There is only one problem: the speed of your computer's motherboard and the old computer chip that's on your motherboard.
Understand the limitation of your computer hardware and improvise on the upgrade whenever possible. We are all like the Wright Brothers and those people who pioneered the science of flight. Who know? One day, we might be able to build a desktop supercomputer.

tuxhugger 06-13-2009 01:25 PM

try TinyMe on that old computer
 
I have TinyMe installed on my kids laptop (compaq presario 1200 w/450mhz AMD K6 and less then 200mb memory. It really flies. More importantly, it looks good and is easy to use. I have tried many lightweight versions of linux including xubuntu,dsl,and puppy but like TinyMe best overall for old hardware.

DragonSlayer48DX 06-13-2009 03:10 PM

Another excellent distro to try is Puppy Linux. Very small, and written to run directly from RAM. Quite nice, I must say.

Cheers

Wim Sturkenboom 06-14-2009 02:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by albierte (Post 3226552)
Upgrading an old Pentium 2 computer is an easy task. All you have to do is upgrade the Hard Drive to at leas 80Gibabyte. You might also want to upgrade the RAM to at least 256 Megabyte(RAM). I just upgraded my Pentium 2 to a 100 Gig Hard drive and 2 Gig of RAM (memory).
The best choice for a Linux Distribution is Ubuntu Linux (Breezy Badger). Or you could play with a Slackware Linux. The list goes on after you changed the Hard Drive and the Memory (RAM).
Once you made the change to the hardware and installed a Linux OS, the sky is the limit. You can do whatever you want with your old computer. There is only one problem: the speed of your computer's motherboard and the old computer chip that's on your motherboard.
Understand the limitation of your computer hardware and improvise on the upgrade whenever possible. We are all like the Wright Brothers and those people who pioneered the science of flight. Who know? One day, we might be able to build a desktop supercomputer.

It's not necessary easy as the BIOS might not pickup a HD bigger than 32GB or so. It was a problem that I encountered. And if the BIOS can not detect it, it can not boot from it. Workaround for me was to keep the original small disk in and install the boot partition on there.

Breezy Badger is very old and no longer supported. I suggest a newer lightweight distro (see other posts).

Neil1982 06-14-2009 02:39 AM

Slax
 
I agree with Slax very easy to install/use. You could get a USB 2.0 controller and test drive many different versions of linux using a bootable usb but you would probably have to make a floppy boot disk though. Could be a pain but it would probably be faster than re-installing a new OS every time. And if you find a version that works well there should be an option to install off the usb

salasi 06-14-2009 04:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by brucie888 (Post 1964635)
I AM A NEWBIE. PLEASE BE GENTLE WITH ME.
Now, I acquired a copy of Mandrakelinux 10.2 (Kernel 2.6, KDE 3.2, X.Org X11 6.7)

I don't use mandrake, but 10.2 is fairly old, isn't it? I'm sure that there is a more appropriate choice, even if it is only a somewhat more up-to-date version of Mandrake. Athough, if you aren't prepared to get more memory and a bigger disk, that is probably not your best option...

Quote:

I attempted to install it on an old HP Pentium 2 computer (256MB RAM, 4 GB hard disk) because that's all I have available right now.... I had to limit the install to the first CD of the 3-CD set because the computer choked on the 3 CDs on the first two install attempts.
It sounds like you have tried to install more stuff than you have room for on your hard disk, which, at 4G, is pretty small. While 'having a larger hard disk' is the most obvious cure for this, this being Linux, there are other choices you could make. Your choices seem to be:
  • buy a bigger hard disk - it doesn't have to be at all big by today's standards
  • install a distro that gives you better control over what gets installed and what doesn't; this could still be a 'big' distro, but the install routine must give you the fine level of control over what gets installed (say Debian, OpenSuSE rather than Ubuntu)
  • install a distro specifically targeted at computers with limited resources; in addition to the suggestions made already, consider DSL, Puppy

In addition to the above, your amount of ram is on the low side - not unusably low, but limiting. Again, you could
  • buy more
  • be rather tolerant of the computer running slowly because it does not have it as much ram as it could
  • ensure that you only use a low resource system and applications

Note that using one of the distros targetted at low resource computers cures both problems, but, if for some reason you decide that this is not the route that you want to follow, you should avoid the 'biggies' as far as GUIs are concerned (kde, gnome) and prefer something more like XFCE of LXDE instead which are lighter in weight.

Quote:

GMail hates Konqueror and with its use disallows all features except reading my mail and composing mail. It tells me to revisit with a better-supported browser. So I've begrudgingly switched to Yahoo Mail where Konqueror is welcome.
I have used gmail with konqueror in the past and didn't find it a problem; sometime you have configure the browser to lie about which browser it is (and usually it is a symptom of flawed browser ident routines). Of course, it shouldn't be a problem to install Firefox, Opera (although, with limited memory, opening dozens of tabs at once may not be a good idea)... when you get the rest of the system sorted out.

rdawgjigga 06-14-2009 04:27 AM

Try Damn Small Linux
 
Check out Damn Small Linux. This distro runs on the 2.4 kernel. Runs entirely on ram and also has options to install on hard drive but I don't recommend you do that. go to damnsmalllinux.org to learn more about it.

nxja 06-14-2009 11:59 AM

(edit/delete lacks delete function)


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