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Linux - Laptop and Netbook Having a problem installing or configuring Linux on your laptop? Need help running Linux on your netbook? This forum is for you. This forum is for any topics relating to Linux and either traditional laptops or netbooks (such as the Asus EEE PC, Everex CloudBook or MSI Wind).

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Old 06-05-2013, 03:05 PM   #1
Invisible-Man
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suggestions for distro: ancient iBook


I have an old PowerPC G3 iBook from about 2002. It still runs, but the OS (Mac OS X 10.2.8 "Darwin") is so old it's not really usable. I want to be able to run it as a novelty: very light internet use, Pandora, that sort of thing. Here are my hardware constraints:

466 MHz processor
128 MB RAM
10 GB hard drive

I don't mind if the firewire port or modem don't work, but the onboard NIC and wireless would be nice.

Suggestions for a very, very, very light distro that requires minimal upkeep?
 
Old 06-05-2013, 03:15 PM   #2
JWJones
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I would try Debian LXDE for PowerPC:

http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/...-lxde-CD-1.iso
 
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Old 06-05-2013, 09:53 PM   #3
DavidLee1A
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Puppy Linux runs on 128 MB 988 Mhz. If Puppy doesn't work then try DSL (that works on similar specs). I'm assuming it's an SCSI hard drive so choose ancient hard drive or something like that if you decide to put puupy on the hard drive. if you get stuck installing puppy then post back. Hope that helps.

Edit: debian does have something for PowerPC (sorry JWJones I should have checked first):
http://www.debian.org/ports/powerpc/

Last edited by DavidLee1A; 06-05-2013 at 10:07 PM.
 
Old 06-06-2013, 11:18 AM   #4
DavidMcCann
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Start here, I think:
http://www.debian.org/ports/powerpc/
http://penguinppc.org/
 
Old 06-07-2013, 06:10 AM   #5
TobiSGD
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I once installed Debian PPC on a iMac G3 with somewhat similar specs, worked fine.
 
Old 06-07-2013, 06:57 AM   #6
Invisible-Man
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Tried this first: http://www.mintppc.org/
Slow, slow, slow and many video problems. I'll be wiping this one later today and trying Debian.

I haven't tried Puppy or DSL yet, and I'm not sure I will. While I have extremely limited RAM (128 MB), I have lots of hard disk space (10 GB) and don't need the distro to be small in its installation. More important is how little it uses the available RAM and CPU capabilities.
 
Old 06-07-2013, 12:45 PM   #7
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Debian is working much better. It's more responsive than MintPPC was and seems to use less system resources. My current problem is setting the resolution for the login screen to something other than 1024x768. I managed to login blind and change the user resolution to 800x600, but the initial username/password screen still defaults to 1024x768. I would have thought the settings for that would be in /etc/X11/xorg.conf, but no such file exists. Go figure.
 
Old 06-07-2013, 01:02 PM   #8
rokytnji
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Just curious if you installed Debian using

http://ppcluddite.blogspot.com/2012/...pc-part-i.html

He went with openbox window manager and lightdm as the login manager.

Me. I don't own mac ppc. On one install of Mine that is long in the tooth and a apt-get update && apt-get dist-upgrade broke slim login manager. I just went ahead and went with xdm login manager instead. Ugly but function-able.

You have not mentioned what Desktop Environment or Window Manager you went with on your install and also what login manager.
If wanting to to login through command line instead of using a login manager.

Put a 3 at the end of kernel line in grub menu list and then login and just use startx command.
Make a backup of menu list first before making any changes though.
 
Old 06-07-2013, 03:05 PM   #9
TobiSGD
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Forgot about that, there were some issues on the iBook G3 with X not able to find the correct resolutions. Create an xorg.conf file with this content:
Code:
Section "Device"
        Identifier      "ATI Rage 128"
        Driver          "r128"
        BusID           "PCI:0:16:0"
        Option          "UseFBDev" "true"
EndSection

Section "Monitor"
        Identifier      "Configured Monitor"
        HorizSync       60-60
        VertRefresh     43-117
EndSection

Section "Screen"
        Identifier      "Default Screen"
        Monitor         "Configured Monitor"
        Device          "Configured Video Device"
        DefaultDepth    24
        SubSection "Display"
                Depth 24
                Modes "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
        EndSubSection
EndSection
That should fix the issues.
 
Old 06-11-2013, 10:45 AM   #10
Invisible-Man
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Tried creating xorg.conf: no luck. I edited a few times to remove the 1024x768 resolution as an option and tried removing the entire "Device" section. The screen became completely unusable, compared to the difficult-to-use split screen I'd had before.

On the other hand, I learned how to login with yaboot to a different runlevel in order to edit xorg.conf between reboots.
 
Old 06-17-2013, 08:14 AM   #11
Invisible-Man
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I've marked this thread as solved since it answered my original question. I'll be starting a new thread with the login screen resolution though, since that's still a problem.
 
  


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