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Old 04-23-2010, 05:51 PM   #1
diacad
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Lubuntu for older machines


I am looking for a Linux distro that runs on older machines and suitable for non-geeks (and geeks like myself, relatively innocent of Linux). I have tried Puppy, Xubuntu, and a few others, but have not been satisfied. Lubuntu has been suggested and sounds promising, but I am having trouble running or even installing this on several old machines. Specs suggest Pentium-200 and 128 Mb as a minimum. Most of the time the install bails out or leaves a blank screen. I could not find a Lubuntu thread. What experiences are those in the know willing to share?
 
Old 04-23-2010, 07:13 PM   #2
paulsm4
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Q: Would you try installing Windows 7 on some old Pentium 200/128MB PC you picked up off the junk pile?

Q: Do you have a reasonably-powered PC that's currently running Windows?
If so, why don't you try a couple of "live distro" DVD's on that PC, and see what results you get?

Just a thought .. PSM
 
Old 04-23-2010, 07:25 PM   #3
linus72
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Welcome to LQ diacad!

Now, whats the specs on the computer you wanna install Linux to?
Please give all info about the computer incl ram, hard drive size, etc
 
Old 04-23-2010, 08:29 PM   #4
Larry Webb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by linus72 View Post
Welcome to LQ diacad!

Now, whats the specs on the computer you wanna install Linux to?
Please give all info about the computer incl ram, hard drive size, etc

Also if puppy will not install then as complete distros I would think Tiny Me would be another option. It would be better if you could give us your computer specs.
 
Old 04-23-2010, 10:46 PM   #5
snowpine
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Welcome to the forums! As others have said already, post your hardware details if you want any meaningful advice.

Lubuntu is still beta testing software; I would avoid it if you are new to Linux in favor of a more stable, well-tested distribution. Lubuntu is basically just Ubuntu with the LXDE desktop environment, which can be easily installed in any Linux distro (including stable Ubuntu releases such as the current 9.10 Karmic Koala): http://www.lxde.org

"What is a good lightweight Linux distro?" is a very frequently asked question; here is one recent article on the topic: http://www.tuxradar.com/content/what...t-linux-distro

Last edited by snowpine; 04-23-2010 at 10:48 PM.
 
Old 04-24-2010, 06:42 AM   #6
diacad
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Thanks all for responding. I am not sure the "Ubuntu" forum is right for my question, but was closest thing to Lubuntu. Perhaps there should be a new thread to discuss rescuing via Linux older machines from the tar-pit, my real interest. Responding in order: ...to paulsm4: Q1 - No. You will find P200/128Mb is below W7 requirements, but within what Lubuntu purportedly needs. Q2 - my target has been machines that are now running W98se adequately and pass elementary hardware diagnostics - why waste time with any distro on an untested or junk machine. ...to Linus72: In practice, my target machines would have Pentium2/233 or better cpu, 128 Mb or better RAM, 3.2 Gb or better HD, 2Mb or better VGA, a CDROM and floppy, ordinary sound, modem, and ethernet (soundblaster, us-robotics, realtek, or similar ubiquities). ...to Larry Webb: puppy usually installs, but I am looking for something better. ...to snowpine: I knew Lubuntu was in beta, just reporting my experience and hoping to learn that of others - thanks for the link, will check it out. It is terrible to see good back number machines going to the dump because of no W98 support from M$ and other vendors (antivirus and tax programs are getting harder to find for W98).
 
Old 04-24-2010, 09:44 AM   #7
tommcd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diacad View Post
Thanks all for responding. I am not sure the "Ubuntu" forum is right for my question, but was closest thing to Lubuntu. Perhaps there should be a new thread to discuss rescuing via Linux older machines from the tar-pit, my real interest. ...
Tux-Radar recently did an article on the best lightweight distros. They voted Slitaz as the best lightweight distro:
http://tuxradar.com/content/whats-be...t-linux-distro
Slitaz is not as beginner friendly as Ubuntu family of distros though. The Slitaz website does have very good documentation to help you get started.
Zenwalk (also briefly mentioned in the Tux-Radar article) is a good choice for a light and beginner friendly distro. I have always found Zenwalk to work very well on my systems.
Lubuntu is also discussed. Keep in mind though that the final version of Lubuntu will not be released until April 29 or so.

Last edited by tommcd; 04-24-2010 at 09:50 AM.
 
Old 04-27-2010, 04:17 PM   #8
phillw
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Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by diacad View Post
Thanks all for responding. In practice, my target machines would have Pentium2/233 or better cpu, 128 Mb or better RAM, 3.2 Gb or better HD, 2Mb or better VGA, a CDROM and floppy, ordinary sound, modem, and ethernet (soundblaster, us-robotics, realtek, or similar ubiquities)
Hi, the problem is not your machine specs, nor Lubuntu. The problem is the ubiquity installer which needs more than 128MB RAM to work (I think it's about 192 MB), hence it dying on you. The team has not gotten a minimal install cd done yet, although it is on the list of things to do (minimal install is totally different build to normal cd and they simply have not had time with the development etc).

There's a 'how-to' being developed that uses the ubuntu minimal installation cd, we're fairly happy with the instructions but I haven't tested them yet (was going to be today, but i got busy) - I'll make a point of testing them tomorrow.

If you keep an eye open at https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Lubuntu/ that's where they'll be posted once I'm happy that they are working. They're not overly involved, but it is a command line installation so you will need to type a few things in.

Also note that the 'final' release of 10.04 Lubuntu will NOT be a LTS release and will be issued as either 'stable beta' or 'stable release candidate', we ran out of time and are now aiming for a full release with 10.10.

Regards,

Phill.

Last edited by phillw; 04-27-2010 at 04:29 PM.
 
Old 04-28-2010, 09:30 AM   #9
tommcd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillw View Post
The problem is the ubiquity installer which needs more than 128MB RAM to work (I think it's about 192 MB), hence it dying on you. The team has not gotten a minimal install cd done yet ...
I just remembered that there is a minimal install CD for Ubuntu. See these:
http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/minimal
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/In...tion/MinimalCD
The first link describes in detail hot to set up a light Ubuntu install with the IceWM window manager.
 
Old 04-28-2010, 09:53 AM   #10
phillw
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by tommcd View Post
I just remembered that there is a minimal install CD for Ubuntu. See these:
http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/minimal
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/In...tion/MinimalCD
The first link describes in detail hot to set up a light Ubuntu install with the IceWM window manager.
Hot off the press, with the bits that need doing specifically for Lubuntu http://forum.phillw.net/viewtopic.ph...=85&p=106#p106 I've got to edit the layout for inclusion on the wiki page. Oh, it does work - As I'm on a machine I just installed to make the instructions :-)

If this site would like a copy of that posting for on here, please just ask :-)

Regards,

Phill.

Last edited by phillw; 04-28-2010 at 09:55 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2010, 10:07 AM   #11
tommcd
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Phillw,
I take it that you are a Lubuntu developer then.
I noticed that on your site you use the ppa:lubuntu-desktop/ppa repository.
Question: Why does the Lubuntu minimal install need to use the ppa repo instead of the main
Ubuntu / Lubuntu repos?
Also, do you know when the final Lubuntu 10.04 will be released? The Lubuntu website says:
Quote:
The status of this final release is not determined yet ... However, final release is still planned for the end of this month, or in very early May.

Last edited by tommcd; 04-28-2010 at 10:08 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2010, 10:59 AM   #12
phillw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommcd View Post
Phillw,
I take it that you are a Lubuntu developer then.
I noticed that on your site you use the ppa:lubuntu-desktop/ppa repository.
Question: Why does the Lubuntu minimal install need to use the ppa repo instead of the main
Ubuntu / Lubuntu repos?
Also, do you know when the final Lubuntu 10.04 will be released? The Lubuntu website says:
Hi, I'm not a lubuntu developer - just one of the testers who also does a bit for documentation and keeps an area for lubuntu in my general notes area (my baby forum). Lubuntu is not fully adopted by Canonical yet, and will not be for 10.04, things that are specific to lubuntu are currently held in the lubuntu ppa.
The minimal install (from ubuntu) comes with no desktop what so ever, you could just as happily add the gnome-desktop (for vanilla ubuntu), kde-desktop (for kubuntu), xcfe-desktop (for xubuntu) or more than one of them !!

Quote:
As you may know, Lubuntu will probably not be officially part of the
*buntu family. It doesn't mean we will never be part of it.

More important, it will not stop us to release an iso. The question will
be : what is the statut of this iso. Stable ? Final ? RC ? Beta ? For
now, I'm inclined to make the status RC, to mark we are not officially
in Ubuntu, but target to have a stable release.

Target for this release is still like others *buntu, end of April. We
may have some delay, depending of the state of Lubuntu at this time.
here are several main components which are very young : pcmanfm was
rewritten, and lxdm is quite new. I think the current state of pcmanfm
is quite good. For lxdm, due to many changes in the boot process of
Ubuntu, it was quite unstable during Lucid. I hope main issues are
resolved with the version in Beta2.

To be general, I'm quite happy with the performance result so far,
memory usage is low, CPU usage not too bad. I'm still think it needs
many more tests. General use cases should be ok, but intensive and
not-classic use cases can be more problematic. That's why reporting bugs
is important We also lack some features for everyday uses. As we
can't fix them for this release, some works will remain for futur
release

To summarize, it's a good starting point, a preview of what Lubuntu is
capable.

Feedbacks over the web are mostly positive, it's a nice indicator, but
doesn't mean it's perfect.
We're now on Beta3, which has some more bugs fixed and the ppa we use is added automatically on install.

For anyone interested in lubuntu, an easy way to keep up to date is to join the mailing list, details are at https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Lubuntu/GettingInvolved

I'm not as skilled as leszec is on making screen-casts (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Lubuntu/DocumentationHelp) As with all documentation it is done by volunteers in the community.

Regards,

Phill.

Last edited by phillw; 04-28-2010 at 11:01 AM.
 
Old 05-06-2010, 06:00 AM   #13
diacad
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I have been asked by LQ if this thread is closed. Since Lubuntu is not finalized yet, I think the discussion should go on. Meanwhile, I have given Slitaz a try and also the latest edition of Puppy available to me (4.3.1), and they do look promising for the older machines that I have targetted. But doesn't Lubuntu promise to open more doors? I note that there are some other LQ threads dealing with Linux on older or minimal machines. I am looking for something that will replace W98se. As you know, this is now sinking deeper into the tarpit, no one is writing apps for it (particularly those of great interest to ordinary users, like tax prep programs and antivirus, which need new editions and updates periodically). Yet there are millions of W98 machines out there with 64 Mb or less, P200 or less, 2 Gb HD or less - running W98 reasonably well with a satisfactory GUI. People who have acquired computers recently sometimes forget how little was necessary just a few years ago to run fairly sophisticated apps. Shouldn't software and operating systems get more efficient, rather than less, as time goes on? Hardware certainly is! I am not a covert Windows booster by any means, but I don't see this matched in the Linux world as yet. More and more the original Linux spirit is sapped by the desire to ape commercial eye candy. But with only requiring a little upgrading of the target hardware and downgrading of unessentials in the lighter distros, perhaps one or more of them might do the trick. Otherwise, we will continue the old-machine disposal travesty we have now.
 
Old 05-06-2010, 06:20 AM   #14
Larry Webb
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I have not looked at the new tax programs but a lot of the upgraded and newer apps require at least 128 meg of ram. The upgrades with the videos and security take more hd space. In a way it is sad that we live in a world that works to make things larger and faster, then work hard to make enough money to buy the new up to date items. It seems to be a never ending cycle.
 
Old 05-06-2010, 06:38 AM   #15
melbob
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Have you considered "Igelle" (http://www.igelle.com/). I haven't had time to install it but I have tried it as a live cd and my initial impression is positive.
 
  


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