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Old 10-09-2017, 12:51 PM   #1
adrianhowland
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Which Distribution for a Dell Studio 17 to watch Media on TV?


Hi there, completely new to Linux in every way so any help would be greatly appreciated!

I have an old Dell studio 17 Laptop with the system specs as below -

OS - Windows Vista Home Premium
Model - Dell Studio 1737
Processor - Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU P8600 @ 2.40GHz
Memory - 4.00GB
System Type - 32-bit Operating System
300gb

It is a spare laptop and only occasionally used to browse the internet and watch movies using VLC on my TV.

I am wondering what Distribution would work best to replace Vista as frankly as everyone knows it is quite awful. The main thing for me is to be able to continue to attach the hdmi cable to my home TV to be able to watch media using VLC (my favourite for adding subtitles).

I also occassionally email and use dropbox but these are not so important as I can do all that through a browser.

Any help would be greatly appreciated! If there is any more information I can add to help please let me know.
 
Old 10-09-2017, 09:32 PM   #2
frankbell
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With 4GB RAM, you could pretty much use any contemporary distro that offers a 32-bit version for that purpose.

For persons new to Linux, I commonly recommend Mint, Mageia, or OpenSUSE. My personal favorites are Slackware and Debian. I generally counsel avoiding distros that seem to exist simply to provide a certain desktop environment, but I'll make an exception for SolusOS, which is a nice piece of work.

Being a Dell, it likely has Broadcom wireless. You might want to check Control Panel-->System on that. Broadcom can work quite nicely with Linux, but it generally takes an extra step or two to get it working.

Oh, and welcome to LQ.

Last edited by frankbell; 10-09-2017 at 09:34 PM.
 
Old 10-09-2017, 10:26 PM   #3
Soitgoes
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If it’s a spare laptop and you use it primarily for media, you could try kodi. Of course, that hardware will support most OSes. So you could run kodi, plex, miniDLNA, mediatomb, etc.. as an app. and forgo the HDMI cable. Just a suggestion. I always found it a pain to hook my computer up to my television. My two cents.

Regards
 
Old 10-10-2017, 09:57 AM   #4
adrianhowland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankbell View Post
With 4GB RAM, you could pretty much use any contemporary distro that offers a 32-bit version for that purpose.

For persons new to Linux, I commonly recommend Mint, Mageia, or OpenSUSE. My personal favorites are Slackware and Debian. I generally counsel avoiding distros that seem to exist simply to provide a certain desktop environment, but I'll make an exception for SolusOS, which is a nice piece of work.

Being a Dell, it likely has Broadcom wireless. You might want to check Control Panel-->System on that. Broadcom can work quite nicely with Linux, but it generally takes an extra step or two to get it working.

Oh, and welcome to LQ.
Thank you very much for your welcome! I have to admit I have no idea what Broadcom wireless is? So not sure what you mean by that.

Thank you for your recommendations, would it be a simple task to set up vlc and play media on a TV with an HDMI cable with these distributions? Frankly that would be the main use for it and being a complete amatuer do not even have an inkling as to where to begin with something like this.
 
Old 10-10-2017, 10:01 AM   #5
adrianhowland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soitgoes View Post
If itís a spare laptop and you use it primarily for media, you could try kodi. Of course, that hardware will support most OSes. So you could run kodi, plex, miniDLNA, mediatomb, etc.. as an app. and forgo the HDMI cable. Just a suggestion. I always found it a pain to hook my computer up to my television. My two cents.

Regards
Thank you for your reply, to be honest connecting to the TV is currently the main use of the laptop, running any media just on the screen would sort of defeat the point. VLC is great just for being able to adjust subtitles etc. the only issue I have now is that a lot of software is not being updated for use with Vista hence asking about Linux.

hope that makes sense.
 
Old 10-10-2017, 10:21 AM   #6
Soitgoes
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I was pointing out that there are some solutions where you do not actually have to plug your computer in to the television via HDMI. You could run a service on the distro you choose to broadcast your media throughout your home on a local network and still watch it on your television without the HDMI. You would need a smartTV, roku, or something of the sort(on the television end). But it’s easy to do. To each his/her own. In any case, welcome.

Regards
 
Old 10-10-2017, 10:50 AM   #7
kilgoretrout
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Quote:
I have to admit I have no idea what Broadcom wireless is
The term refers to the type of wireless card in your laptop. Those which use a chipset manufactured by Broadcom are notoriously finicky on linux but you can usually get them to work with some effort. It's not something you would wish on someone new to linux however. Since you intend to connect directly by HDMI cable, the type of wireless card you have is irrelevant.
 
Old 10-10-2017, 11:01 AM   #8
adrianhowland
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Originally Posted by kilgoretrout View Post
The term refers to the type of wireless card in your laptop. Those which use a chipset manufactured by Broadcom are notoriously finicky on linux but you can usually get them to work with some effort. It's not something you would wish on someone new to linux however. Since you intend to connect directly by HDMI cable, the type of wireless card you have is irrelevant.
Ah ok, I am getting there slowly! haha, thank you very much for your help, to be honest I do believe my wireless card is not working properly anyway, i currently connect to the internet by wire.
 
Old 10-10-2017, 11:06 AM   #9
adrianhowland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soitgoes View Post
I was pointing out that there are some solutions where you do not actually have to plug your computer in to the television via HDMI. You could run a service on the distro you choose to broadcast your media throughout your home on a local network and still watch it on your television without the HDMI. You would need a smartTV, roku, or something of the sort(on the television end). But itís easy to do. To each his/her own. In any case, welcome.

Regards
Well that sounds very interesting and something I would definitely like to learn in the future, at the moment I think my TV is possibly not smart enough (decent TV, aweful software). Although not to do with this post, can you recommend any links that explain this more, I have a decent desktop upstairs, may well be easier to set this up on that, I have 'Unified Remote' to control the computer, perhaps it will make my laptop completely obsolete!

Cheers
 
Old 10-10-2017, 12:11 PM   #10
un1x
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankbell View Post
I commonly recommend Mint
M I N T for sure !

https://linuxmint.com/

 
  


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