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Old 04-10-2017, 02:48 PM   #1
JustSomeOldDude
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Old noob person with complicated question seeking help from Linux supergurus


Greetings Linux crowd. I understand Linux people are insanely intelligent so i guess im in the right place to ask.

Here's the situation.
Of the 3 PC's i have, I have an old Pentiun 3.1 single core, 1gb ram, BTX configuration machine built by Gateway that i use for music (pandora) and internet browsing to get info on the various models im building at my hobby desk while i tinker on model trains and stuff. The thing is literally built like a tank (possibly a boat anchor now)
Anyway ive been running XPPro service pack 2b with the latest DotNet service pack on it since 2007 no problems and it was pretty fast. HOWEVER--
Just recently we upgraded from Time warner cable to Spectrum Highspeed internet and they brought in a new router and it will no longer browse the internet, with firefox, or opera or even K-melon. Although the two other windows7 pc's and one Mint 17 laptop all connect flawlessly.
The XP gateway will connect after a long time "Authenticating" but after a second then the new router blocks it. I have changed nothing on this old machine.

I have tried everything from every protocol setting to dropping the firewall to clearing the DNS, reseting the IPconfig, and reseting the Winsock. Finally after contacting a human at Spectrum they said to update service pack to SP3. Now i know, from experience, that SP3 will make this machine totally unusable speedwise because ive experienced that before.
And thats still no guarantee that that will work because Spectrum says XP is no longer officially supported.
I did notice that an old laptop i have, that is running Mint17 connected to the new wireless router without a hitch.
So i installed Mint Xfce 18.1 on the old Gateway, it connected to the wireless router just fine, but it was actually slower than my XP os.
So im left with two choices
1 Throw the incredibly heavy well made machine out ( because the BTX configuration seems impossible to upgrade)
or
2 Find an older faster Linux version that is as fast or faster than my XP and still falls within my limited point and click skills as a user.

Thoughts?? Sugestions??
Lubuntu? Older Linux distribution?

Sorry for my lack of technical lingo and Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.
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Last edited by JustSomeOldDude; 04-10-2017 at 06:43 PM.
 
Old 04-10-2017, 03:19 PM   #2
jefro
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Hello and welcome to LQ.

Every time I see a question like this, the person answering it gets the question wrong.

I haven't a clue as to what in SP3 could make it work. https://phys.org/news/2007-12-microsoft-windows-xp.html So I'd have to wonder what may help you. You might get an old Knoppix cd and boot to it. Maybe 3.x version to 5.x versions. See if you can connect then. If not then I'd work on finding out why their modem isn't working correctly.

As for linux choices, you'd have to mention some stats on this box. Linux has some mostly current versions that are targeted to older hardware. XP can run on some very minimal hardware so you may not even bother with this old box. May have to upgrade ram to get some action out of it.
 
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Old 04-10-2017, 03:25 PM   #3
Rickkkk
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Hey there JustSomeOldDude - Welcome to LQ. Hard to ignore a banner like yours :-)

Bottom line - you've given up on Windows XP and are looking for a lighter faster linux distro than Mint 18.1 XFCE to run on your old Gateway, right ? You also want said distro to be as "point and click" (read ... similar to Windows ..) as possible.

Couple of comments:

- Notwithstanding your decision to go with linux, Windows XP should not have stopped being able to connect reliably to the Internet just because you changed / upgraded your ISP. Also, XP should not really be significantly slower under Service Pack 3 than under SP1 or SP2. This is just a comment for clarity sake, however: XP being no longer supported by Microsoft, you would be better off seeking another alternative, as you are doing.

- There are quite a few "light-fast, easy to use linux distro" alternatives, to say the least. Many members here recommend Antix for older hardware. The various versions of Puppy Linux are also popular. I would begin by taking a look at those, along with other suggestions you are likely to get here.

Cheers !
 
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Old 04-10-2017, 03:48 PM   #4
mrmazda
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Being a possessor of several multiboot machines that still have space devoted to WinXP but are rarely booted to it, I'm inclined to think the issue OP had was not Internet per se being blocked, but its Internet Explorer 6 being blocked or unsupported. IIRC, SP3 brought with it an upgrade from IE6 to IE8, which probably still has some support on the Internet. Had he still had XP installed I'd have suggested using the last Firefox version supported for XP (ESR52). Given intent to switch to Linux, I agree AntiX is a good choice, but even using Mint, mostly what's really needed is to ensure unneed services aren't running, and install and use a lighter than Gnome, Mate or Cinnamon DE, such as E, IceWM, LXDE, TDE (using Debian Stretch TDE repos) or XFCE.
 
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Old 04-10-2017, 04:15 PM   #5
Rickkkk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmazda View Post
... install and use a lighter than Gnome, Mate or Cinnamon DE, such as E, IceWM, LXDE, TDE (using Debian Stretch TDE repos) or XFCE.
Good suggestions here from mrmazda for choosing a light Desktop Environment or Window Manager. Feel free to ask if you need help with this - even if a distro comes with a DE pre-installed, in almost all cases it can be changed.

Cheers,
 
Old 04-10-2017, 04:35 PM   #6
bilbod
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You did not say how much RAM the computer has. If you have too little RAM, you will have to use a swap file/partition. That will slow things down dramatically.

Both Puppy and Vector Linux Lite claim to run on a Pentium 3 with 128MB RAM but recommend 256MB RAM.

If you have enough RAM, Puppy can be loaded entirely into RAM and it should be fast even on an old machine. Not sure if you can do that with VVL.

One caveat about Puppy, the last time I used it, it ran everything as root which is a security risk.
 
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Old 04-10-2017, 05:07 PM   #7
mrmazda
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Hmm, I missed the XFCE part of the OP. Bilbod likely pinned the problem. A machine as described in OP possibly can be populated with no more than 768MB, while XP SP2 probably was content with as little as 128MB. OP's description is unclear. If he has a 440BX Intel chipset with Pentium iii, then 768MB is likely the limit, with less likely to be installed for XP. The BTX form factor from 2004 OTOH is much newer, suitable for Pentium 4 chips and at least 2GB RAM, which should be fine for XFCE on Mint. 440BX motherboards could be pretty picky about RAM, but old as its type (PC100) is, he should be able to fill it up for little trouble or expense.
 
Old 04-10-2017, 05:38 PM   #8
trumpforprez
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustSomeOldDude View Post
Just recently we upgraded to Spectrum Highspeed internet and it will no longer browse the internet. It will connect but after a second the router blocks it.
It's 2017. And you have Win XP?
And you haven't even upgraded to Service Pack 3?

That seems really unusual.

Last edited by trumpforprez; 04-10-2017 at 06:05 PM.
 
Old 04-10-2017, 06:15 PM   #9
JustSomeOldDude
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Thanks for all the input. Sorry for not having a enough details in my original post i have added some more info.
 
Old 04-10-2017, 06:28 PM   #10
mrmazda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustSomeOldDude View Post
i have added some more info.
Where?
 
Old 04-10-2017, 06:42 PM   #11
jamison20000e
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Cool

Hi.

https://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/u...64/iso-hybrid/ debian-live-testing-amd64-xfce-desktop+nonfree.iso ...just one opinion.

Have fun!
 
Old 04-10-2017, 07:43 PM   #12
JustSomeOldDude
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Thanks for all the help and input.
Well i have to say, im impressed.
I did not realize how easy it was to install multiple Linux OS's
So I thought i would give 3 distro's a try
Mint, Puppy and Lubuntu

Mint, while being not as fast as i would like has the best user interface, to me, i really like the feel of it.
Puppy is fastest of the 3 but i don't feel "At home" using it
Lubuntu seems to be a middle choice, it's fast enough and although being half the size of mint has an interface i can comfortably move around around in.

Doing all this research i just learned i can install Andriodx86. Maybe that will be an experiment for another time.

Last edited by JustSomeOldDude; 04-10-2017 at 07:45 PM.
 
Old 04-10-2017, 08:14 PM   #13
bilbod
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustSomeOldDude View Post
Mint, while being not as fast as i would like has the best user interface, to me, i really like the feel of it.
Puppy is fastest of the 3 but i don't feel "At home" using it
Lubuntu seems to be a middle choice, it's fast enough and although being half the size of mint has an interface i can comfortably move around around in.
What you are calling the interface is the Desktop Environment or Window Manager. You can install anyone you want on any version of Linux.

You might want to install iceWM on anyone of those 3, it is very light and fast. Its default look and feel is similar to Windows 95 (which is not too different from Windows XP)
 
Old 04-10-2017, 08:17 PM   #14
JJJCR
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Since you mention Andoidx86, why not try Chrome OS.

Here's a link: http://www.techradar.com/how-to/comp...ome-os-1310287
 
Old 04-18-2017, 04:32 AM   #15
JustSomeOldDude
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Just an update to anyone who may possibly experience this issue after getting spectrum high speed.
While i am enjoying the Linux distros I was able to solve my initial connectivity problem in XP by installing the connection software utilities that came with the Old Netgear WiFi card.(never needed the netgear utility before) Seems the Old software has the correct certificates, protocols or whatever that allow the connection. Wiredness/My noobness.
Anyway i now have several OS's to play with including my beloved XP
Thank You for all the help, suggestions and input
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Last edited by JustSomeOldDude; 04-18-2017 at 04:36 AM.
 
  


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