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Old 06-28-2014, 07:29 AM   #1
NotionCommotion
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Recommended distro for 11 year old


My 11 year old daughter wants to play Minecraft (Java based), and instead of having her play on my wife's PC, I am going to use a 5 year old Dell laptop and put Linux on it. I will likely allow her to access the Internet with it and need some sort of filter protection. I am also sure she will use it for word processing, power points, etc.

I am "finally" somewhat proficient using Centos command line, but know next to nothing about any of the Linux GUI interfaces, and have never used another distro.

I am not necessarily looking for another project, and desire the simplest distro to setup and use.

Any recommendations?

Thank you
 
Old 06-28-2014, 07:51 AM   #2
gor0
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http://bit.ly/1sMgb4Q

 
Old 06-28-2014, 07:59 AM   #3
mark_alfred
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Perhaps Ubuntu or Edubuntu with dansguardian set up for the filter.

ETA: Or just use Centos, since you're familiar with it.

Last edited by mark_alfred; 06-28-2014 at 08:10 AM.
 
Old 06-28-2014, 08:18 AM   #4
NotionCommotion
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Originally Posted by mark_alfred View Post
Perhaps Ubuntu or Edubuntu with dansguardian set up for the filter.
Thanks Mark,

I was kind of leaning toward Ubuntu even though I never used it. Just because I know Centos, probably shouldn't go that way, true?

I never heard about Edubuntu before. Looks like a fork of Ubuntu. Think it might be too niche oriented?
 
Old 06-28-2014, 08:19 AM   #5
NotionCommotion
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Thanks Gor,

Yes, I Google'd "distros for children" before posting my question, and received many options. I respect the members of this forum, and was hoping to get some firsthand recommendations.
 
Old 06-28-2014, 04:22 PM   #6
jefro
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Let her pick what looks the best maybe?
 
Old 06-28-2014, 10:47 PM   #7
Sumguy
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Ubuntu on a 5 year-old 'puter? Current Ubuntu is more bloated than Windows8, and barely works on brand-new stuff!
 
Old 06-28-2014, 11:59 PM   #8
NotionCommotion
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Ubuntu on a 5 year-old 'puter? Current Ubuntu is more bloated than Windows8, and barely works on brand-new stuff!
Well, did so, and graphics seem a bit slow, but other than that, all seems to work. Really, more than Windows8? I have another older laptop which I am deciding what to do with. Guess Ubuntu might not be a good choice?
 
Old 06-29-2014, 12:05 AM   #9
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumguy View Post
Ubuntu on a 5 year-old 'puter? Current Ubuntu is more bloated than Windows8, and barely works on brand-new stuff!
Nonsense. Ubuntu will run fine on a dual core with 2GB or more RAM, which perfectly fits the description of a five year old computer, not to mention brand new machines.

CentOS might have problems with newer games due to its rather old Glibc version. I would recommend a lightweight version of Mint, for example Mint Mate, but if you are more comfortable with RPM based distributions openSuse or Korora might also be worth a look.

You might have problems with Minecraft on laptops, especially if the laptop only features relatively weak onboard graphics. Minecraft is known for being pretty demanding on the hardware.
 
Old 06-29-2014, 12:19 AM   #10
astrogeek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NotionCommotion View Post
My 11 year old daughter wants to play Minecraft (Java based), and instead of having her play on my wife's PC, I am going to use a 5 year old Dell laptop and put Linux on it.
Five years is really not so old. I think my newest box is from 2008, the laptop I am typing from is from 2005.

I run Slackware on everything, but just about any distro should work well on a 5 year old machine, possibly with a lightweight DE. If you are experiencing slowness it is probably the DE maybe you could try something with Fluxbox of Xfce on it, or just try to turn off some of the bling.

Of course having a distro aimed at kids would be a plus, but it really shouldn't take much effort to add what you need to most distros. My own kids were all raised on GNU+Linux (the best ideas of both), Mandriva and then Slackware and they turned out great! If you start her at 11 she will be providing your tech support by 12!

Last edited by astrogeek; 06-29-2014 at 12:21 AM.
 
Old 06-29-2014, 12:36 AM   #11
k3lt01
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I agree with the others but if you are concerned about Ubuntu being to heavy then use Xubuntu.
 
Old 06-29-2014, 12:44 AM   #12
Sumguy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NotionCommotion View Post
Well, did so, and graphics seem a bit slow, but other than that, all seems to work. Really, more than Windows8? I have another older laptop which I am deciding what to do with. Guess Ubuntu might not be a good choice?
The bad news is, it'll get even slower before long..... (Not to mention the spyware, etc. I no longer even consider Ubuntu to be a real Linux distro. It's a shame- I used an earlier version as my introduction to Linux, and it was great, then.)
 
Old 06-29-2014, 01:30 AM   #13
frieza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astrogeek View Post
Of course having a distro aimed at kids would be a plus, but it really shouldn't take much effort to add what you need to most distros. My own kids were all raised on GNU+Linux (the best ideas of both), Mandriva and then Slackware and they turned out great! If you start her at 11 she will be providing your tech support by 12!
i agree, when i was 11 all i had was ms-dos, it didn't take me much to learn how to do basic things with it. i think more importantly is a minimul interface that limits what the kid can/can't do with the machine, such as gnome or xfce in kiosk mode, which can be done on any distro, i would recommend using centos if you are familiar with it since you, not your kid will be administering it.
 
Old 06-29-2014, 01:39 AM   #14
Tadaen
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I nominate Debian. After someone suggested, I looked at Ubuntu as I was using it at the time... It isn't any easier than anything else gui based. They have a few tools that make things easier but honestly those tools are mediocre at best to begin with I found. Give her something that makes her think a bit, not that does it for her. That is the best thing you can do in this case.

Last edited by Tadaen; 06-29-2014 at 01:43 AM.
 
Old 06-29-2014, 01:47 AM   #15
Beryllos
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My kids are using Debian 7.x (Wheezy) with the Gnome 3 desktop environment, on approximately 5-year-old computers. It works great. These computers have dual core ~2GHz CPUs, 2GB RAM, and either Intel integrated graphics on the motherboard or inexpensive graphics cards. With some graphics cards, I've had to install the appropriate nonfree drivers to make Gnome 3 work properly; otherwise it reverts to "Classic Gnome" which doesn't look as fancy.

When my 11-year-old son first saw the Gnome 3 desktop, he became very excited because, as he said, it looks like a Mac. As far as he was concerned, that made it 100 times better (more attractive, more stylish) than the Windows XP that it replaced.

Edit: Since you mentioned word processing, etc., we are using the LibreOffice suite. That and a number of other standard applications were installed automatically. One common functionality that didn't come by default is the ability to play CSS-encrypted DVDs. I had to install libdvdcss in order for DVD player software to play encrypted DVDs.

Also, since you mentioned laptops, let me add that I have had to install nonfree (proprietary) drivers for some wireless network interfaces. Of course, in order to search for and download the drivers, I had to connect by Ethernet cable. (In fact, the Ethernet connection was already in place since I used the net-install method to install the OS in the first place.)

Last edited by Beryllos; 06-29-2014 at 02:37 AM.
 
  


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