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Old 02-27-2005, 04:25 PM   #1
lava420
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Pentium 2 400 - will it handle linux


Hi all,

Thinking of scrapping off windows, because I'm sick of the sight of it.

Been working as a visual foxpro developer for the last 6 years or so, and i wouldn't mind having a go at a *bit* of linux development, plus it would be nice not to look at a windows system when I get home from work.

**when I say bit - I mean "hello world" - bit, might give me the taste to learn.

Been having a quick look round and that mandrake 10.1 seems to be the easiest to get started with, correct me if im wrong.

The problem I think is my machine, is it going to be able to cope ?

its a pentum2 400 with 256 ram with a 40 gig HD

got a 1 meg broadband cable internet connect (and it is fast!, too fast)

some old dell thing I scavenged from work when I burnt out my p3 800

Had a good look round on the web but cant find any minimum system requirements ?

Any help much appreciated.

Thanks.

 
Old 02-27-2005, 04:35 PM   #2
Tino27
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The nice thing about Linux is that you can customize the various pieces (kernel, window manager, desktop) to suit your exact needs. While the kernel is designed to run on any computer, regardless of speed, in your case I would look at some of the "lighter" window managers/desktops. You may sacrifice some of the "eye candy" appeal of KDE or GNOME, but you can still build a fairly responsive setup. I'd look into FluxBox or XFCE. And if you're really looking minimal impact, check out Blackbox. I set up my aunt on a P2 350 Mhz running XFCE and while Fluxbox or Blackbox might be more responsive, it is too minimal for my aunt. XFCE fits in just perfectly.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 04:45 PM   #3
titanium_geek
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should. A P2 is not THAT old.
if you have any hardware problems, I would look at your other stuff before the processor.

Mandrake 10.1 should be very easy to learn. It is a nice mix of newbie and advanced, and while the Slackware guys may laugh at me, I really like Mandrake (I'm running 10.0 community) I can still mess with stuff as I feel like it, but for most of the time it "just works" It has some annoying things that require fixing (like the 1st CD drive bug) which they might have fixed in 10.1, I don't know. But overall, a nice distro, I really like the install, it is very easy to understand.

have fun, and remember to keep using the forum to ask questions.

titanium_geek
 
Old 02-27-2005, 05:13 PM   #4
chris318
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I've run kde and gnome on a 500Mhz P II with no problem at all, with a cheap intergrated graphics card. It's really not that slow at all, much faster than you would think actually. Linux will be faster on your hardware than windows by the way. You don't need a top of the line comp to run linux, unlike windows.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 05:16 PM   #5
piscikeeper
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i'm running a p2-266,256mb of ram,3gb hdd........and libranet 2.8.1 --it'll run no problem.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 05:17 PM   #6
amosf
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I have mandrake 10.1 on P2 and p3 boxes (and less) with KDE. You may just need to trim some of the eyecandy if it looks sluggish. You have enough ram, which is a key issue....
 
Old 02-27-2005, 05:27 PM   #7
synaptical
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no problem.

Code:
jeff@moe:~ $ cat /proc/cpuinfo 
processor       : 0
vendor_id       : GenuineIntel
cpu family      : 6
model           : 3
model name      : Pentium II (Klamath)
stepping        : 4
cpu MHz         : 299.334
cache size      : 512 KB
fdiv_bug        : no
hlt_bug         : no
f00f_bug        : no
coma_bug        : no
fpu             : yes
fpu_exception   : yes
cpuid level     : 2
wp              : yes
flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov mmx
bogomips        : 596.37

jeff@moe:~ $ uptime
 18:22:47 up 101 days,  1:59,  2 users,  load average:  0.20, 0.17, 0.16
 
Old 02-27-2005, 05:35 PM   #8
Basslord1124
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Yes it'll run...I had Linux on a 266 machine before with maybe 190some megs of RAM...kinda slow but ran just fine.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 09:30 PM   #9
Motown
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Mandrake was a decent intro to linux, but it's way too buggy for consistent use. Also, I might offer up that a lot of the user-friendly distros are actually slower than windows. Granted, they are more powerfull, but don't expect spare cpu cycles to rain down from the sky or anything. You will notice that the guy above who said "no problem" is running either arch linux, slackware or debian on that system (sez so next to his name). All three are fairly slim, do-it-yourself distros. If (when) you get sick of the big distros, try one of the above.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 09:41 PM   #10
amosf
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I do, however, have mandrake 9.2 currently running on a pentium 200mmx clocked at 188mhz with 64meg ram.

This is tweaked and trimed a little, but IS running KDE in a useable manner, tho obviously not quickly. It is still a useful email and browser desktop for my sister...

BTW, mandrake seems to be hardware dependent and is stable on some systems and unstable on others (mainly 10.0 version). I tend to use a kernel.org kernel on my production MDK box as it makes it totally stable.
 
Old 02-27-2005, 10:59 PM   #11
synaptical
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Quote:
Originally posted by Motown
Mandrake was a decent intro to linux, but it's way too buggy for consistent use. Also, I might offer up that a lot of the user-friendly distros are actually slower than windows. Granted, they are more powerfull, but don't expect spare cpu cycles to rain down from the sky or anything. You will notice that the guy above who said "no problem" is running either arch linux, slackware or debian on that system (sez so next to his name). All three are fairly slim, do-it-yourself distros. If (when) you get sick of the big distros, try one of the above.
yep, that's a good point. that box is debian, from a very minimal install with no X. when i had X on it, it also ran fine with icewm and then fluxbox, both of which were faster than any windows could be on that hardware. flux seems so light it's almost transparent, like running a plain console, only with gui apps.
 
Old 02-28-2005, 12:19 AM   #12
floppywhopper
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My wife is currently running a P II 450 with 256 Megs and Mandrake 10.0. its got a 64Meg video card though and that makes a big difference.

If your video is not too great then dont expect much out of KDE and graphics etc etc, put simply don't bother with "Tux Racer"

but otherwise shouldn't have too many problems, Open office will take a while to load etc ... that sort of thing.

hope this helps
live long and prosper
floppy
 
Old 02-28-2005, 03:04 AM   #13
marco_certelli
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Hi

I'm running mandrake 10.1 community on a pentium MMX 200Mhz with 96 MB Ram + 20GB HDD (seagate, UDMA/66).

KDE works fine. Just configure the window looking light enough (no fancy effects). Open Office is a problem. Koffice is lighter. GNOME is heavier than KDE.

On my PC (chipset i430TX), the 2.4.27 kernel is faster than 2.6.8. I think 2.6 does not configure the disk access in an optimal way (hdparm gives me 18 MB/s with 2.4 and 11 MB/s with 2.6).

The key point for running Linux with a desktop manger is: >64MB RAM + fast&new HDD (HDD should be UDMA/66 capable, even if the chipset can only handle UDMA/33).

Just to know, on my PC it takes from 6 seconds to open a simple window application (a terminal) up to 15/20 s to open a complex one (koffice). Once the applications are opened, they are usable at a reasonable speed.

Bye Bye, Marco.
 
Old 02-28-2005, 03:23 AM   #14
amosf
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The ram makes the difference, that's for sure. Mandrake 10.1/KDE goes well on a p2-350 with 256meg ram... Will even run OOo...
 
Old 02-28-2005, 05:27 AM   #15
pendulum
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I'm surprised how well my old computer with a Pentium 200Mhz and 64mb ram handles Slackware. I'd written it off as too slow to be any use and put it in the loft for 2 years, brought it out to install Slackware and it's perfectly fine for browsing and word processing. One thing I notice after using it for a couple of weeks is that it sometimes takes a while to load a program, but once it's loaded it's always nice and quick, it's easy you forget your using an old and supposedly slow computer.

I bought a 128mb stick of ram off ebay to see if it helps with the program loading times, it probably will make a difference.

Last edited by pendulum; 02-28-2005 at 05:30 AM.
 
  


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