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Old 10-05-2011, 10:37 PM   #1
tdisernia
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Which version should I start with on a small lap top computer?


I have a Toshiba lap top computer with 6.3gb hard drive. Which version of Linux should I use? I am a ham radio operator.
 
Old 10-05-2011, 10:59 PM   #2
Knightron
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Hello, just to update your knowledge, Although often called "Linux", linux is infact just the kernel of the operating system, the kernel is like the soul of the operating system; the rest is all Gnu applications, which is like the body of the operating system, and then the packages, which is what the user will usually install/uninstall, these are like the clothes of the operating system. So when you say "Linux", the more correct label is 'Gnu/Linux'. Version is also not the right word to use: Distribution is the word you were after. This is important because Gnu/Linux Distributions are like Windows in this respect, windows has it's own versions, xp, vista, 7, ect; and each Gnu/Linux distribution has it's own versions too.
Now for you're question, i'm sorry but it's a hard question to answer, and the forums get many of this question and each thread covering this question gets roughly the same answer each time, which is, only you can decide and it depends on what you're after. Is you're hard drive 6.3 gb, or is that a typo? if it is, you may want to consider one of the minimalistic distros, like Puppy or Damn Small Linux. Go to distrowatch.com and check out some info on some of the distros that catch your eye, and you may find the right distro for you.
 
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Old 10-05-2011, 11:18 PM   #3
Jenni
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The distro you want depends on a lot of things, like what you want to do with the computer, if you're comfortable with a command line, your patience, technical ability, the machine capabilities, etc. etc.
Some distros, like Ubuntu, are very friendly to new linux users, others like Gentoo are better for people comfortable with the system.
Small distros like Puppy aren't as feature-rich as many others, but puppy at least is easy to use and can work pretty well on older hardware.

Ultimately the best way to find a distro is to test them, most distros are availible free, so for the cost of a few CD/DVDs or a single rewritable CD/DVD you can test out different distros to see which best suits your needs. LiveCDs/liveUSBs etc. can be good ways to test out a distro too without commiting any harddrive space to it, and many liveCDs (like ubuntu's and fedora's) have an installer so if you decide you enjoy it, you can install it to your dard drive from the live CD.
 
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Old 10-05-2011, 11:30 PM   #4
cascade9
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6.3GB HDD....its likely to not have enough RAM to run most modern distros.
 
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Old 10-06-2011, 09:47 PM   #5
frankbell
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With such a small drive, I'd take a look at Puppy.

http://puppylinux.org/wikka/HomePage
 
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Old 10-07-2011, 06:10 AM   #6
rhowaldt
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take a look at Crunchbang. it is fast, stable, stays out of your way while still providing you with enough apps to work. the community forums are really friendly and helpful. http://crunchbanglinux.org/
 
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Old 10-07-2011, 09:12 AM   #7
yancek
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Google "ham radio and linux" to start if that's your primary focus. As stated above, with that small a hard drive you are not likely to have enough RAM to install any of the more popular Linux distributions.

Some information on the hardware and age of the computer may be helpful.

Last edited by yancek; 10-07-2011 at 09:17 AM.
 
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Old 10-07-2011, 11:30 AM   #8
DavidMcCann
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Firstly, an important thing is the size of your memory. Even if a distro fits on your HD, it may need more memory to run than your computer has. Examples of small distros' requirements are
64MB: AntiX
128MB: Salix (LXDE version)
192MB: WattOS
256MB: Salix (Xfce version), Mint (LXDE version)

Searching for "WattOS hardware requirements" reveals that it takes 3GB of disk space. Whether that leaves enough for you depends on what personal files you will want to keep on this machine.

It would also be a good idea to search for the exact name of your laptop together with the name of a distro, to see if people have had any problems combining the two.
 
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Old 10-15-2011, 12:36 PM   #9
tdisernia
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Thanks all for you valuable information on GNU/Linux. I will do more research as to the correct Kernel to use on my old laptop computer.
 
  


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