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Old 03-07-2008, 06:27 PM   #1
linuxhippy
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Linux newbie distro recommendation


My friend has a home pc that's a P4 with 256 MB of RAM and a 20 GB hard drive from 7 years ago. He just uses his pc for surfing the net, watching movies, listening to music, and checking email. The pc came with WinXP which has gotten real slow. I gave him dban on cd so he could wipe his drive and start over. He wants it partitioned so that Linux and Win can reside on his fresh drive. I'll put Linux on there for him in a dual boot environment with Win, but considering his meager pc hardware and that he's comfortable with point and click tasks-which Linux distro is recommended?
 
Old 03-07-2008, 06:42 PM   #2
BrianK
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[Open]Suse and Ubuntu are both pretty click-friendly.
 
Old 03-07-2008, 09:15 PM   #3
linuxhippy
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I was thinking about Ubuntu....actually XUbuntu since XFCE desktop is quick. I wanted to see what others thought-thanks!
 
Old 03-08-2008, 02:58 AM   #4
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Yes, I would also suggest to go for XFCE based distributions.
My vote will be with VectorLinux, Zenwalk. They are stable and fast.
 
Old 03-08-2008, 06:06 AM   #5
mrclisdue
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Since Slackware is in your distro list, why not install slack with fluxbox - can't get too much more streamlined and simpler than that.
 
Old 03-08-2008, 08:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrclisdue View Post
Since Slackware is in your distro list, why not install slack with fluxbox - can't get too much more streamlined and simpler than that.
I tend to agree with this as the biased Slackware user that I am. I think you're gonna spend a lot more time debugging Ubuntu than Slackware for him. If you setup Slackware right, he'll never have any problems with it, and he may even learn something about Linux. I can't say the same for Ubuntu, bugs pop up all time. With ever new update there's a good chance of screwing the system.

And on meager hardware ... you must be kidding, Pentium 4 is meager ??? And 256 MB of RAM is plenty for using fluxbox and the like, I know it's the minimum requirements of Ubuntu even for installing.

Quote:
At least 256 MB of RAM is required to run the desktop install CD.
http://www.ubuntu.com/products/whati...desktopedition
 
Old 03-08-2008, 10:21 AM   #7
linuxhippy
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I too think Slackware is unbreakable-but even having to type startx is going to be confusing for him. He has an old Dell pc which I'm thinking has hardware good for Ubuntu since Dell is pre-installing some with Ubuntu now (or was thinking about it).

I re-partitioned his pc with gparted a couple years ago and shrunk his NTFS partition after doing a Win defrag. Here's the layout:

- 2 large partitions (9 GB each)...his NTFS WinXP area and an ext3 area for Fedora Core Linux.
- 1 500 MB swap partition for Linux
- One 1 GB backup area that was vfat and could be shared between Win and Lin.

I then installed Fedora Core and set up a dual boot system. After doing all this he complained that his pc was slower??? I don't understand how that could be (please enlighten me!). Yesterday he finally got around to using DBAN on his drive to nuke everything and re-installed WinXP on one 20 GB partition...his entire hard drive.

Now, he wants to try Linux (again) but wants a snappier version than Fedora Core. I want him to be pleased with it this time but I don't want to hear I slowed down his pc. How did I slow it down...was it by repartitioning his drive? Should I try to give him a Linux distro that resides on another hard drive or a USB stick?

I like Vector too and will look into that distro since it is based on Slackware and seems to be unbreakable as well.

Last edited by linuxhippy; 03-08-2008 at 10:27 AM.
 
Old 03-08-2008, 12:07 PM   #8
H_TeXMeX_H
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Set it up to boot into init level 4, it goes straight to KDM, the graphical login.

Whatever you do, don't give him FC, it's not snappy, and it's cutting / bleeding edge ...

Either way, you should install something light, Vector should also be a good choice.
 
Old 03-08-2008, 12:14 PM   #9
linuxhippy
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I'm actually thinking about putting a 2nd hard drive into his pc and putting Linux on that....maybe a 5 GB drive for Vector Linux 5.9 STD GOLD. I do think Fedora Core was too cutting edge for his pc.
 
Old 03-08-2008, 12:30 PM   #10
archer
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Take a look at this test:
http://www.zegeniestudios.net/ldc/
archer
 
Old 03-08-2008, 12:52 PM   #11
oskar
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I think Xubuntu offers a very good compromise between availability of packages and stability.
Slackware is a completely different animal. I for one would go nuts if I had to compile my stuff on a P4 with 246mb ram... but everyone has different priorities.
 
Old 03-10-2008, 08:42 AM   #12
linuxhippy
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Well, I installed both XUbuntu 7.10 and VectorLinux 5.9 STD-GOLD. I had a lot of problems with XUbuntu on my newer Athlon 64...I downloaded the x86 version which should have worked on my pc (it's backward compatible to x86) but it didn't include the ATI module I needed for my integrated radeon chipset. I also didn't like the install cd since it didn't have an emergency boot from hard drive option. On the other hand, I did like the Vector install cd since it included my ATI video module and did have emergency boot from hard drive directions on the install cd.

I think I'll wind up putting a 2nd hard drive in my friends pc (I'd like to upgrade his RAM for Win also) and then installing Vector Linux on the 2nd drive so that I don't have to repartition his Win installation.
 
Old 03-10-2008, 10:09 AM   #13
b1f30
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Debian + Synaptic. It doesn't get much easier than that.

*shrug*
 
Old 03-10-2008, 11:02 AM   #14
linuxhippy
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Vector does include slapt-get for easy package download and installation.
 
Old 03-10-2008, 12:43 PM   #15
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Since Vector is Slackware-based and it works well on it, I would go with that.

@ b1f30

that's a great sig, so many poor dead kittens, and all for nothing
 
  


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