Originally Posted by Woodsman
There has been a long standing claim that Linux based systems are good for reviving old hardware. I have a PI and a PII. I updated those systems regularly when I updated my primary systems. Both now run Slackware 14.0 and both are horribly sluggish. Through the years I noticed both systems getting slower with each update.
This is not a rap against Slackware, which I have used for 10 years. Only a rebuttable against the claim.
The claim may have been valid for the 90s, where Linux was a hobbyist operating system, developed and used by people with poor access to new and expensive hardware (like students). Applications consisted mainly of (open source) Unix legacy from the 80s, usually running in text-mode.
The intention was "get your unix-like experience on a cheap PC without having to pay the unix-like price".
Today Linux runs on servers and supercomputers, Red Hat completely drops ia32 support in RHEL7. Contribution-based hardware support usually degrades within 3-5 years, when the affected hardware fells out of use. Distributors increase hardware requirements even faster than mainstream PC operating systems, because no-one runs a supercomputer with Windows XP and P5/P6 machines don't exist in datacenters anymore.
So Linux is a complete different thing now. You get a computing powerhouse, but you must be able provide the hardware for it - more like "Slowlaris" now.