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Old 07-18-2013, 07:06 AM   #16
Registered: Oct 2006
Location: California, USA
Distribution: Mint 16, Lubuntu 14.04, Mythbuntu 14.04, Kubuntu 13.10, Xubuntu 10.04
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I'd say give Antix a try.

It runs very fast on a Pentium 3 600mhz with 192mb of ram. I threw on lxde so it'd look nicer and it was still fast. I'm sure it'd be great on a P4 of any speed. It's very light on the ram.

It comes with a nice control panel that I feel makes a lot of tasks simple to do that a lot of other distros don't include.
Old 07-18-2013, 07:09 AM   #17
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Location: Australia
Distribution: Debian Wheezy, Jessie, Sid/Experimental, playing with LFS.
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I have an older (2003? something) Acer Extensa 2300 (1.3 Ghz Celeron, half a Pentium) that come out with 256 MB RAM and it run a stripped down Debian Squeeze Gnome ok, I added an extra memory stick that brought it up to 512 MB RAM and it run well. I installed a stripped down Debian Wheezy with Gnome and it was just way to slow. I then tried the same Wheezy with LXDE, MATE, and XFCE and they are all fine with 512 MB RAM. Obviously the more RAM you have the better it will run but they all run at an acceptable level.

I have a few Dells (2 Ghz Pentium 4 with between 512 MB and 1 GB RAM) and they run Debian Wheezy fine. The graphics wont run Gnome Shell though.

The big thing is don't have to many applications open at any one time and you'll be fine. My 1GB RAM machines are ok with LibreOffice and Iceweasel (Firefox) and maybe one low resource program open at the same time but I wouldn't try to watch a video on VLC or listen to music with Banshee as well.
Old 07-19-2013, 03:50 AM   #18
Registered: Jan 2011
Location: Planet Earth, Australia, NSW
Distribution: openSUSE Leap 42.1 (x86_64)
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Thanks again to all :-)

Working my way through, so first tried what familiar and did install opensuse 10.3 then opensuse 11.0 OK (both retired) from CD/DVD, tried install openSUSE-12.3-DVD-i586.

openSUSE-12.3-DVD-i586 on USB failed to install, eventually discovered my bios of P4S533-E does NOT support Boot From USB drive.

Try to install openSUSE-12.3-DVD-i586 on disk also failed, still to resolve problem GRUB fails

Distrowatch makes it easy to consider which non-opensuse :-)
Whilst NON-Technical am a little adventurous :-)

CrunchBang apparently requires USB
(updating motherboard BIOS where to-date remain nervous)

Slackware 14.0 looks good so downloading to try :-)

Slackware Linux doesn't require an extremely powerful system to run (though having one is quite nice . It will run on systems as far back as the 486. Below is a list of minimum system requirements needed to install and run Slackware.

486 processor
64MB RAM (1GB+ suggested)
About 5GB+ of hard disk space for a full install
CD or DVD drive (if not bootable, then a bootable USB flash stick or PXE server/network card)

Additional hardware may be needed if you want to run the X Window System at a usable speed or if you want network capabilities.

Linux a land of free choices :-)
Old 07-19-2013, 04:13 AM   #19
John VV
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CentOS or ScientificLinux 6.4 should install

and CentOS 5.9 WILL install and run fine , though firefox might be a bit slow
Old 07-19-2013, 04:55 PM   #20
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Registered: Jul 2006
Location: London
Distribution: CentOS, Salix
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As far as CentOS 6 is concerned, Red Hat recommend 1GB and Stanford University's guide says "At SLAC, RHEL6 has been successfully installed on systems with 512 MB, but such systems have a tendency to bog down badly…" A quick look at top shows I'm using 543MB at the moment, with Opera and OpenOffice.

I'd repeat my previous advice, but it's your computer!

Last edited by DavidMcCann; 07-19-2013 at 04:58 PM.
Old 07-20-2013, 01:51 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by polpak View Post
CrunchBang apparently requires USB
(updating motherboard BIOS where to-date remain nervous)
No, it doesnt. You can instal from optical media with crunchbang just fine.....though from the .iso size it would need a DVD or a 750MB CD (non-standard size, most are rated at 700MB but will normally fit 735MB/702MiB)
Old 07-20-2013, 10:05 PM   #22
Registered: Jan 2011
Location: Planet Earth, Australia, NSW
Distribution: openSUSE Leap 42.1 (x86_64)
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Noted comment from cascade9 :-)

After my weekly trip into town discovered my box of DVD's was empty, young culprit "helpers" educated dangers any repeat of this !

Shall work my way through...

Like see ways found to revive and make useful older, slower, less ram, computers which otherwise likely dumped, use or send them to others far less technical, who may benefit from them :-)

Information found at

North Bridge-------------SiS645DX
South Bridge-------------SiS962
Hyper=Threading Support--No
DDR Socket---------------3
SDR Socket---------------N/A
MAX memory---------------3GB
Onboard Audio------------CMI 8738-6CH
USB 2.0 Ports------------6
Crash Free BIOS----------No
Post Reporter------------Yes
EZ Flash-----------------Yes
Q FAN--------------------Yes
Multilanguage BIOS-------Yes
Boot from USB------------No

Thanks to all :-)


pentium 4

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