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Old 06-05-2010, 01:45 PM   #1
Timmi
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Seek minimalistic distro for low resources Netbook


Hi all, I'm hoping someone will help me.

I want a distro I can run on my very weak netbook, and perhaps on one or two other of my other computers as well.
Netbook is an Asus eeePC 900SD (Celeron 800mhz, 512MB RAM, 8GB SDD, 1024x600 screen resolution), very slow with some distros, but nimble with others.

I've tried:
Ubuntu Netbook Remix (EasyPeasy), Leeenux, JoliCloud: too resource hungry on this machine, too much storage consumed just for the OS.
Peppermint OS - pros: works well, nice, very few bugs, fast... cons: space requirements, memory requirements make it a bit tight, cloud apps are slower than locally installed ones, the permanent inclusion of a paid-subscription cloud app, and fascist support forum moderators.
JoliCloud... a bit overweight, and way too cloud-centric - many of the cloud apps are on unreliable servers and not always available or slow down your netbook to a crawl while it waits for some executable code to come off the web.
Puppeee version 1.0 (and Fluppy for all netbooks), works very well, very fast, in little RAM with little disk space required. Some may not like the overcrowded menus and their structure that's inherited from the parent Puppy.
Puppy 5.1: works very well compared to the 4.3 series. wifi works now. But same menu comments as for Puppeee.
Slitaz: at 30MB for the iso, it sounded promising, and the interface is very nice, much nicer than any of the other minimalistic distros... but Wifi? no help on the horizon.
AntiX: some stuff just didn't work properly, including Wifi WPA... but it looked real good. For the space and memory requirements look to Peppermint.
TinyMe2010: this is the size of Puppy, and polished like Peppermint. Based on a slimmed-down Unity, it is still in beta, the installer won't install from USB stick. If you have a CD to install from this is a great distro! Lets hope they fix the USB issue soon! Very promising... keep a watch on this one.

And many others...

Can anyone recommend something that is:
  • small/compact
  • fast
  • supports modern hardware (WIFI + sreen brightness control)
  • stable
  • with a team providing long-term vision/maintenance/upgrades
  • just works! (doesn't require recompiling and/or command line stuff just to get things working - my take on this, is that if it can be done, it's probably wayyy easier for the package assembler to do it for the users than to ask hundreds of noobs to do it themselves and then get lots of support overhead in the forums)
  • not KDE, not Gnome, but something smaller and faster
    (like fluxbox, lxde (just not lxde+ubutu))

I've tried dozens of distros, and find it frustrating to deal with the various crippling flaws of some distros and the egos of the assemblers of other distros (where they can easily fix something but refuse to because they prefer an older faulty way). I am at my whit's end here. Please help me someone.

From us Noob's point of view: the new re-release of Windows XP for Legacy computers with only 64MB of RAM, it may be time to re-visit our thinking that minimalistic Linux distros are the only kid on the block for those slower machines with less resources. Time to get back to the drawing board and make these a little more user-welcoming. ;-)

Last edited by Timmi; 09-03-2010 at 07:07 PM.
 
Old 06-05-2010, 03:01 PM   #2
linus72
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You could try one of my nFlux distros?
debian squeeze
ubuntu 10.04
slackware 13.1/current
http://multidistro.com/

they all run pretty well on my lappy toshiba 7000CT 160mb ram
266mhz pentiumII 4GB hdd

each gives you the ability to remaster also
so, add/remove what you want, etc
as for wireless, theres some and some apps
for it like wicd, wireshark, aircrackng, etc
 
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Old 06-05-2010, 09:27 PM   #3
craigevil
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DebianEeePC/HowTo/Install - Debian Wiki - http://wiki.debian.org/DebianEeePC/HowTo/Install

DebianEeePC/Models - Debian Wiki - http://wiki.debian.org/DebianEeePC/M...nEeePC%2FModel

Debian works great on the Eee netbooks.

Although it sounds like you do not want to take the time to learn anything about Linux. Perhaps going with windows would be your best bet.

Last edited by craigevil; 06-05-2010 at 09:38 PM.
 
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Old 06-05-2010, 09:51 PM   #4
FredGSanford
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Maybe check out the LXDE edition of Mandriva community edition.
Quote:
MandrivaUser.de proudly presents to you our newest product: the MUD-LXDE-Edition.
This edition is an installable live system based on Mandriva 2010.0 with LXDE as Desktop environment. It was especially compiled with older, smaller computers with less ressources in mind. We tried to add applications for all the usual areas, like office, internet, multimedia, etc. and focussed on small and lean applications and tools.
Download the ISO at ftp://ftp.mandrivauser.de/mandriva_i...D-LXDE-EDITION

I'm using it on an older IBM Netvista system with 512mb of memory.

Last edited by FredGSanford; 06-05-2010 at 09:53 PM.
 
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Old 06-05-2010, 11:49 PM   #5
install_gentoo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craigevil View Post
DebianEeePC/HowTo/Install - Debian Wiki -
Debian works great on the Eee netbooks.

Although it sounds like you do not want to take the time to learn anything about Linux. Perhaps going with windows would be your best bet.
^This

Debian is a good choice, also have you tried Lubuntu? I've heard a lot of good things about it with lower-end computers.
 
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Old 06-05-2010, 11:52 PM   #6
Timmi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craigevil View Post
Although it sounds like you do not want to take the time to learn anything about Linux. Perhaps going with windows would be your best bet.
Gee thanks craig for making me feel welcome in the Linux community.
I'll give your suggestion some thought - maybe you can share it with more of the community. I see you've been working hard since 2005 to keep Linux from going mainstream and keeping it to the elitists.

Last edited by Timmi; 06-06-2010 at 02:17 AM.
 
Old 06-06-2010, 01:49 AM   #7
Timmi
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Thanks so much guys for the suggestions. Just posting back to let you know it's being read and appreciated... by more than just myself, I am sure.

Fred, I won't be going to Mandriva because I dont want to paint myself into a corner to have to start paying for stuff I may need because I don't yet have your expertise to do it all myself.
Linux72 thanks for the suggesions, I'll look into that.

Anyone have insight to share about the following:
Mepis ANTIX 8.5 and antix base 8.5
Archbang
Salix 13.1
?

Also, I think I've ruled out what I don't want:
. KDE & Gnome: too big
. Lubuntu (lxde+ubuntu is just a bad marriage)
. xfce (still have Xubuntu 10 on my netbook for the moment, and although the speed is very nice, it's human interface layout has too much wrong with it - also found numerous glitches with Xubuntu).
. anything dormant, anything experimental or unstable with just one deloper (what if he gets hit by a truck, or becomes a busy dad? I'll have to start my search all over again), as well as anything where they release a new version before they even get the current one right - I don't live to serve my computer (by always reinstalling), it's supposed to be the other way around. ;-)

I'm back with Mint9 on my main machine as of an hour ago, at least for now (because it falls into that latter category), but I'm still looking for something as polished as that, but smaller and faster, for my other machines. Mint just get everything right... but they are at the mercy of Ubuntu's far too frequent release cycle.

Last edited by Timmi; 06-06-2010 at 01:47 PM.
 
Old 06-06-2010, 10:13 AM   #8
parnote
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Timmi,

You might want to have a look at PCLXDE (PCLinuxOS LXDE version) or Phoenix (PCLinuxOS Xfce version). Both are very polished and work well on computers with lower specs. Your hardware specs should be able to handle either with ease, and run very well.

PCLXDE: http://pclinuxos.com/?page_id=188

Phoenix: http://pclinuxos.com/?page_id=213

parnote
 
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Old 06-06-2010, 10:58 AM   #9
rokytnji
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Quote:
Anyone have insight to share about the following:
Mepis ANTIX 8.5 and antix base 8.5
I run AntiX 8.5 Full Iso and AntiX 8.5 Base with XFCE 4.6 .

Base is on a SD card and runs on my Acer Aspire One ZG5

Full is on my Asus EEEPC 900 4gig SSD/16gig SSD Celeron 2 gig ram (I upgraded ram)

I wasn't going to respond Timmi because you say

Quote:
AntiX: some stuff just didn't work properly, including Wifi WPA.
Which I do not have any problems with myself on either Netbook.
You can go to my blog to look at the particulars if you wish.
I just figured your mind was already made up. So I was keeping silent. My Hotkeys work as far as Brightness, Sound, Wifi, Suspend
http://mepislovers.org/forums/showthread.php?t=26177

And I don't have the wpa issues you seem to have either

http://antix.mepis.org/index.php/Howto_articles#Wicd

From the list of applications used in antiX

Quote:
ii wpagui 0.6.10-2 graphical user interface for wpa_supplicant
ii wpasupplicant 0.6.10-2 client support for WPA and WPA2 (IEEE 802.11
But I can understand User preferences when it comes to Distros. That is why I use AntiX on my Asus EEEPC 900. It works for me. YMMV.
 
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Old 06-06-2010, 12:59 PM   #10
FredGSanford
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timmi View Post
Fred, I won't be going to Mandriva because I dont want to paint myself into a corner to have to start paying for stuff I may need because I don't yet have your expertise to do it all myself.

Anyone have insight to share about the following:
Mepis ANTIX 8.5 and antix base 8.5
Archbang
Salix 13.1
?

Also, I think I've ruled out what I don't want:
. KDE & Gnome: too big
. Lubuntu (lxde+ubuntu is just a bad marriage)
. xfce (still have Xubuntu 10 on my netbook for the moment, and it has too much wrong with it, although the speed is very nice).
. anything dormant as well as anything where they release a new version before they even get the current one right - I don't live to serve my computer (by always reinstalling), it's supposed to be the other way around. ;-)
I'm not quite sure what you mean by paying and expertise to do it by yourself. Mandriva is about as free and easy as can be. It also have one of the best Control Center around, IMHO. It is a livecd also.

Good luck if you try AntiX & ArchBang, compared to Mandriva. No offense to those distros either.
 
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Old 06-06-2010, 02:10 PM   #11
Timmi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FredGSanford View Post
I'm not quite sure what you mean by paying and expertise to do it by yourself. Mandriva is about as free and easy as can be.
Fred, I am referring to this: http://www2.mandriva.com/downloads/
You have to pay for Instant On, Powerpack, Pulse. I need to be very very very sure I want to stick with the product before I use paypal. And when I referred to expertise, I was assuming someone would retort that "but you could recompile/remaster/rewhatever the equivalent of their paid versions" which I don't want to attempt. And I'm pretty sure the best distros are the paid versions in this case. Besides, KDE and Gnome are fine for my multicore, but will not be going onto my other computers. If I had to choose between getting Mandriva KDE/Gnome versus Mint-ubuntu Gnome, the choice is obvious.

Last edited by Timmi; 06-06-2010 at 02:13 PM.
 
Old 06-06-2010, 02:12 PM   #12
Timmi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by parnote View Post
You might want to have a look at PCLXDE (PCLinuxOS LXDE version) or Phoenix (PCLinuxOS Xfce version). Both are very polished and work well on computers with lower specs. Your hardware specs should be able to handle either with ease, and run very well.
It is their warning: "for intermediate and advanced users" that scared me away. I KNOW what lies ahead for me if I go there, and I don't want to go there - that's just not for us noobs. Thanks anyways for the suggestion.

EDIT: OK, OK, I'll give it a try. I can no longer resist the urge. I'll report back.
PS: OK, I was enthused to find a small LXDE version, tried it, and there are problems with the wifi connection utility. Funny, on distrowatch, the pclinuxos people had them put it in the "for beginners" category and on their wbsite they says it's just for the technically savvy. Distrowatch description needs updating.

Last edited by Timmi; 06-08-2010 at 02:42 PM.
 
Old 06-06-2010, 03:04 PM   #13
FredGSanford
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I was referring to the link in my first post for the community edition of Mandriva using LXDE environment. Which is a free livecd that can be installed to hard drive.

Mandriva themselves have a FREE & ONE edition they offer that is no cost other than downloading. The Free version means no proprietary software included but can be added my updating repositories and the One version is a livecd which can be installed and include proprietary software. You can get KDE/Gnome or any other desktop/window environment.

Using the community version from the link in my first post is using Lxde on my older system and when I use the Free/One version I used the Gnome versions. I'm not a big fan of KDE.

It was just something to think about using if other distros wasn't to your liking.

http://www2.mandriva.com/downloads/

The ONE and FREE versions are free to use with no cost. Those others, such as powerpack are just to support the distro which includes optional software to make it easier to install.

Last edited by FredGSanford; 06-06-2010 at 03:06 PM.
 
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Old 06-06-2010, 03:51 PM   #14
Bratmon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timmi View Post
the new re-release of Windows XP for Legacy computers with only 64MB of RAM,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vaporware
 
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Old 06-06-2010, 04:51 PM   #15
Timmi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bratmon View Post
Vaporware dude? I have a copy!

Last edited by Timmi; 06-06-2010 at 09:04 PM.
 
  


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