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Old 08-07-2015, 12:42 PM   #1
S3TH76
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The Best, the good and the smallest.Linux or *NIX-like distribution for old laptop


I have an terrible old laptop with few resources:

CPU Intel Centrino i855PM, 512 DDR RAM @133Mhz, 160Gb HDD

...and I want to install a Linux or *NIX-like distribution that will work normally on it.
 
Old 08-07-2015, 12:53 PM   #2
Timothy Miller
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The ram is going to be a bit of a problem, but as long as you don't try to run anything that has a full desktop environment, you should be able to find something. Debian has a 32-bit build that should work if you did a netinstall and built a lightweight version (my personal choice, but probably not a great idea if you're new to linux), AntiX is based on Debian and specifically designed for older hardware and will probably run quite well (a friend of mine swears by this distro, and his hardware isn't THAT much newer than yours). TinyCore is another designed specifically for old hardware, and I know gets many great reviews. That would be my personal short list. There's plenty of others that will work, but those are the ones I know people who run them and recommend them regularly.

If you upgraded your ram to the max (2 GB for that chipset, yes?), realistically you could run any 32-bit distro that didn't have KDE or Gnome as the desktop (XFCE, Cinnamon, etc. would all work well with that I think).

Last edited by Timothy Miller; 08-07-2015 at 12:56 PM.
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 12:58 PM   #3
ardvark71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S3TH76 View Post
CPU Intel Centrino i855PM, 512 DDR RAM @133Mhz, 160Gb HDD
Hi...

I would highly encourage you to upgrade the memory, if the motherboard can accept more. At least 1 GB, 2 GB if you can.

Regards...
 
Old 08-07-2015, 01:32 PM   #4
fatmac
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Some suggestions for 512mb ram.

AntiX - http://antix.mepis.com/index.php?title=Main_Page

TinyCore - http://www.tinycorelinux.net/welcome.html

SliTaz - http://www.slitaz.org/en/about/

FreeBSD - https://www.freebsd.org/

OpenBSD - https://www.freebsd.org/

If you just run a Window Manager, you should be OK.

(I was just using FreeBSD/Fluxbox/Firefox the other day with 512mb ram on a dual core 1.4 GHz laptop.)

Last edited by fatmac; 08-07-2015 at 01:34 PM.
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 03:59 PM   #5
wesaus32
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I would also add to fatmac's list with

Puppy Linux: http://puppylinux.org/main/Overview2...%20Started.htm

Sparky Linux: http://sparkylinux.org/

Simplicity Linux: http://simplicitylinux.org/

Lubuntu: http://lubuntu.net/

Some of these distros (Puppy and Sparky come to mind here) are made for PC's such as the one you are holding onto (woot for not trashing that sucker yet!)
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 04:11 PM   #6
jefro
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For fun, run MenuetOS and HaikuOS.
 
Old 08-07-2015, 04:15 PM   #7
Hasek39
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I think you can try Slackware (but without KDE -- don't install it!) or some kind of Xubuntu/Lubuntu. In fact you are more interested in some lightweight desktop environment like Xfce or LXDE than in special distribution.
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 04:23 PM   #8
ardvark71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wesaus32 View Post
Hi...

I wouldn't recommend Lubuntu in this case as the OS can easily reach 512 MB by itself, not including browsers and other programs.

Regards...

Last edited by ardvark71; 08-07-2015 at 04:24 PM. Reason: Correction.
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 04:50 PM   #9
Timothy Miller
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Yeah, with 512 you'd want to use a simple window manager, openbox, fluxbox, fvwm, etc.

Now, get it up to 2 GB, and LXDE or XFCE will work fine.
 
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Old 08-07-2015, 05:09 PM   #10
John VV
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CentOS 5.11 will run fine with 512 meg ram ( years ago ,i had 5.3 running with that on a Desktop )

but centos is not that great of a OS for a laptop

but it should run ok using Gnome2 ( the default desktop )
 
Old 08-07-2015, 05:14 PM   #11
Timothy Miller
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This processor was still fairly modern when CentOS5 was released. CentOS7 would choke and die.
 
Old 08-07-2015, 06:04 PM   #12
yancek
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The smallest Linux distributions I am aware of are TinyCore and Nanolinux. See the links below. No idea if they will work but it won't take long to check. You may not want something as minimalistic as these?

http://distro.ibiblio.org/tinycorelinux/downloads.html

http://linux.softpedia.com/get/Syste...x-102963.shtml
 
Old 08-07-2015, 06:14 PM   #13
jamison20000e
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Thumbs up

Hi.

Free to try...&c.

I'd say best to start with a CLI only distro or variant then add only necessities.

I personally love a [search]netinst[/search] on my old T20. With I think less RAM? I'd have to find it. Some others worked well, not enough hard-drive space for even dual-boot tho.

If you want to try it out install like any other but also download a full install CD or DVD for the packages, a nitinst starts small. I'm no Guru (as a hobbyist) so once the operating system is installed, I install Aptitude (a kinda GUI in the CLI;)
Code:
su 
Password: 
adduser you sudo
exit
sudo apt-cdrom add
sudo apt-get install aptitude
sudo aptitude
'sudo apt-cdrom add' have full disc in the drive... plus have fun.

Last edited by jamison20000e; 08-07-2015 at 06:30 PM.
 
Old 09-10-2015, 08:49 AM   #14
S3TH76
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I tried MenuetOS & Haiku recommended by jefro.
MenuetOS is about 1.5mb and boot a kernel then enter in somesort of error I don't remember wich and I tried to install Haiku. Haiku booted normally, entered in setup, all good until partioning scheme... why didn't take it fdisk from one of others linux systems if you take it Grub loader? Can be created partitions of any size BUT WITHOUT NAME/MOUNT POINT! wtf? And it freezes when create Fat32 LBA partition, I wasn't able to reboot, I had to take off the battery of the laptop 2 times.

So these 2 are out of MY LIST :-D

Now I try to understand why or how to install KALI Linux 2, on my laptop. It gives me next error:
"WARNING: PAE disabled. Use parameter 'forcepae' to enable at your own risk! This kernel requires the following features not present on the CPU: pae. Unable to boot - please use a kernel appropiate for your CPU."

Now, I was running half a year ago Kali Linux 1 - Live cd, and I didn't have problems. How to avoid this problem so that I install latest Kali Linux 2 on my laptop - if possible, offcourse.

Thank you very much for answers at my previous questions.
Thank you in advance.
 
Old 09-10-2015, 09:42 AM   #15
rokytnji
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Quote:
Now, I was running half a year ago Kali Linux 1 - Live cd, and I didn't have problems. How to avoid this problem so that I install latest Kali Linux 2 on my laptop - if possible, offcourse.
It already told you

Quote:
"WARNING: PAE disabled. Use parameter 'forcepae' to enable at your own risk! This kernel requires the following features not present on the CPU: pae. Unable to boot - please use a kernel appropiate for your CPU."
Below links shows my non sse2 capable cpu running the best small Linux distros on 256MB and 512 MB of ram on ancient rigs

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...5/#post5219220

http://oi43.tinypic.com/2dbndyr.jpg

http://oi51.tinypic.com/2m4d0nb.jpg
 
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