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Old 05-20-2015, 07:25 AM   #1
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Best distro for a cheap recent laptop?


I'm a telecom/IT contractor and my work laptop died so instead of buying a new one, I decided to give my spare laptop a try. It's a cheap Lenovo G585 with only 2Gb ram and a AMD E1. Needless to say this is a real slow laptop. W8 was preinstalled and barely runs. Even for simple work related tasks its too slow.

Instead of wasting money on it, I am contemplating the idea of installing a Linux distro. I manage via ssh a few linux servers for my customers (centos, red hat, ubuntu server) but actually never used it as my main OS.

I just want something lighter than W8 so the laptop will be faster. Which distro should I get? I was thinking about LXLE but there's too much distros I can't choose.

Speed is the priority in this case. I also like a good looking UI.

Also, how's Microsoft Remote desktop from a Linux client? Is it fast and well optimized?

Old 05-20-2015, 07:42 AM   #2
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Any distro with a lightweight DE or WM (XFCE, LXDE, Fluxbox, etc) will do. They're available for all distros, even if they're not included by default. Distro choice is a matter of personal taste or need, everybody recommends their favourite. Try a few.
Old 05-20-2015, 07:54 AM   #3
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i installed 32bit xubuntu on a 1GB laptop just two days ago
works fine, better then winXP that was on it
Old 05-20-2015, 08:05 AM   #4
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lightweight distros

Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Puppy Linux, Damn Small Linux to name a few.

This wikipedia article has a number I haven't heard of but worth a shot.

You can also try installing one of the major distributions and strip it down, which is all the lightweight distributions of Linux really are.
Old 05-20-2015, 08:16 AM   #5
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Xubunut works great, I've used it in the past.
Old 05-20-2015, 08:20 AM   #6
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You can find a whole bunch of other options on Distrowatch.
Old 05-20-2015, 08:25 AM   #7
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Give MX-14 a spin. Based on Debian Stable. Broadcom wifi support during a live session. Should run fast. A good knowledgeable friendly forum. Youtube videos by dolphin_oracle
on anything you need to know.

You could save some time running MX-14 IMO.
MX Linux sources
Current release: MX-14-4, 32-bit architecture only.

I. Monthly update/upgrade

These monthly ISOs, both PAE and NON-PAE, are created from the original release using MX Snapshot. They include all upgrades since the original release, and thus remove the necessity of downloading a large number of files after creating a new installation. They also enable users to run Live with the most recent version of the programs.
Download : HERE.

Youtube Channel
Edit: always md5sum check downloaded iso files to save time and uneeded headaches later. Before burning, booting and installing a linux operating system.

Speed is the priority in this case. I also like a good looking UI.
Speed part of my post is covered. UI? I make my own look as I please. I never settle for the default.

Just saying.
Happy Trailz. Rok

Last edited by rokytnji; 05-20-2015 at 08:38 AM.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:48 AM   #8
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If you want a pretty UI then I would go with Mint, or Debian Jessie+ with a cinnamon desktop.

Chromium Vanilla is also super lightweight (basically just a google chrome browser as an OS) and not bad if all you want to do is surf the internet.
Old 05-20-2015, 11:48 AM   #9
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I have an original IBM Thinkpad, with a Pentium M! That runs Salix quite happily: the reliability of Slackware, with quick access to lots of software.
Old 05-20-2015, 12:26 PM   #10
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I agree with rokytnji's recommendation for the Lenovo G585 with a slow cpu which is rated at at only 685.

MX-14 is an excellent Linux distribution based on Debian and runs quickly on old or low powered machines.

In addition, tons of software packages are available from the Debian repositories.



How to install:

Download the PAE version from:

If you have a Broadcom wifi card it may need tweaking regardless of which Linux distro you use.

Keep your fingers crossed and hope that MX-14 deals with it out of the box.

Broadcom wifi cards:
Old 05-21-2015, 06:40 AM   #11
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Thanks for your replies. Went with Xubuntu and so far, I am enjoying it.


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