since you don't mention hardware here is the min req'd
2) if it is just hardware, linux offers lots of distros that can handle old hardware.....but if it is hardware min specs going graphical in Mdk will be worse as its more resource hungry......
you could first try out a live cd such as knoppix or I prefer kanotix to see if they detect anything strange
but hard drive installs are best left to a small distro I prefer puppy
you can read about them on www.distrowatch.org
yep I am not asking you to buy them just download a distro more suited to your hardware.
forgive me if you meet the specs ....please post them if you do and someone more wiser can take over?