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Old 06-05-2005, 11:36 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Idaho
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 6

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I need help choosing a distro for comp.

Ok, this is what I would like help with and I hope this does not turn in to a distro war. My mother who is 60 years old is taking the leap to Linux from Windows XP. I only use linux after switching to Linux with my first distro being Redhat 5.2 when it first came out I now use Debian 3.1 Sarge. Also at my work we only use Linux which my mother has fallen in love with KDE. So here is my question below I have her computer stats and I have a list of Distributions I like do not like and absolutely refuse to install on my mothers computer! She currently runs Suse 9.2 and it runs to slow for her system and she needs something that runs pretty fast.

Her Computer:
Pentium III 800 MHZ
128 MB Ram
Nvidia TNT 2 32 MB
Need to run a good version of KDE

I will NOT install/do not like
Mandrake / Mandriva
Redhat / Fedora

Do not like but would be willing to install:

I Like!
Suse - Too Slow

Never tried:
Turbo Linux
Old 06-05-2005, 12:07 PM   #2
Registered: Sep 2003
Location: Toronto
Distribution: Mandriva Powerpack 2007
Posts: 87

Rep: Reputation: 15
I was going to suggest Mandrake Discovery 10.1, as it's working well here with a computer quite similar to your mother's.

Is it the RPM that you dislike about Mandriva/Mandrake/Red Hat/Fedora?
Old 06-05-2005, 12:15 PM   #3
Senior Member
Registered: Dec 2003
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 3,178
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 138Reputation: 138
Since you have narrowed down the list yourself, I suggest Debian.

It's an excellent distro, rock-solid stable if you are conservative and go with Sarge (soon to be in the stable branch - you can also use "testing" branch quite safely), easy to maintain, easy to upgrade, pretty much configure-and-forget after the first installation.

The Sarge installer is also pretty easy.
Old 06-05-2005, 12:21 PM   #4
Bruce Hill
HCL Maintainer
Registered: Jun 2003
Location: McCalla, AL, USA
Distribution: Arch, Gentoo
Posts: 6,939

Rep: Reputation: 129Reputation: 129
One of the things you can do to make her computer run better
is to run a custom kernel. The latest is very stable,
and this is not distro specific.

I like Slackware because it allows me to customize everything,
and the files are in expected places. Plus, it just works.

But key for your mother is that you set everything up for her so
that all she does is click and run.

Here is a desktop screenshot of KDE 3.4 with superkaramba. It
looks really nice to me. If you're interested in that type of setup,
you can contact clavius @ #slackman at and he
will get you going.

I can't find the link now, but will paste it as an Edit...worth seeing.

Edit: Nice KDE desktop screenshot

Last edited by Bruce Hill; 06-05-2005 at 12:32 PM.
Old 06-06-2005, 05:19 AM   #5
Registered: Apr 2004
Distribution: Arch, Debian and FreeBSD
Posts: 243

Rep: Reputation: 30
I'd try debian or freebsd if I was you. To me FreeBSD feels faster then debian (faster boot etc), but you're already familiar with debian sarge.
You should recompile the kernel to make it a bit faster. Get all the fancy stuff out of KDE as well, because I think it's more KDE then the distro she runs which makes her computer slow.
Make sure there are no unnecessary services running either, in sarge use the app sysvconfig and sysv-rc-conf to chose which services should run or not.



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