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Old 04-21-2019, 03:55 PM   #31
upnort
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I have a 486 with Slackware 11.0 installed along side WFWG 3.11. Interestingly, although the video card is dying, WFWG remains quite responsive.

Also a PI and PII sitting on the basement shelves with 14.1 installed. They work great on the console but test anybody's patience when loading X. Can't really find a useful purpose for them anymore and they are not exactly energy efficient either.

I have a couple of AM2 systems. Once they were production systems in my office and ran Slackware. Now test machines with nothing installed.

A funny thing about the old hardware is at one time they all were considered state of the art and bleeding edge. The two AM2 systems are early generation dual core. When I bought them I thought wow, so fast. Compared now to my midland 4-core in the office the dual core systems seem horribly slow. Of course, SATA II disk speeds contribute to the slowness.

Quote:
On the question of distributions still supporting 32bit, a quick search on distrowatch shows that except Slackware and some of its derivatives, only Gentoo, Mageia, ALT Linux and ROSA Linux remain.
Debian too. The 32-bit minimal install remains available in the Ubuntu line, just no official ISO images or spins.

Quote:
disclaimer) that machine used to run MLED; I really wish there was still a good-looking Slackware XFCE respin targetting these older machines.
"Good-looking" is subjective, but perhaps Salix fits the intent?

Quote:
and my Dell PowerEdge R710
We have several of these at work running Proxmox. Beasts.
 
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Old 04-21-2019, 04:17 PM   #32
karlmag
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upnort View Post
A funny thing about the old hardware is at one time they all were considered state of the art and bleeding edge. The two AM2 systems are early generation dual core. When I bought them I thought wow, so fast. Compared now to my midland 4-core in the office the dual core systems seem horribly slow. Of course, SATA II disk speeds contribute to the slowness.
The first machine I tested Linux on (Yeah, Slackware) was a 486dx33MHz with 4MB RAM (later upgraded to 20MB). Could have been as early as late '93, but I guess if I say '94 I'm at least sure I'm not lying too much.

These days my primary workstation is a 6core i7@3.3GHz with 64GB RAM. And even multiple monitors.

The times have changed a bit. Still - was able to get stuff done on it back then too (adjusted for expectations I suspect).

--
KarlMag
 
Old 04-21-2019, 07:27 PM   #33
cowpoke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phalange View Post
I have a Thinkpad T61 (c.2008) running Slackware at this moment. I've been meaning to use it for a BSD - and I may yet - but for now it's doing its thing with Slack Current. I may ebay myself a dinosaur desktop for a home music server at some point too, and naturally that would run Slackware too. Full disclosure though, the old one is not the norm for me; I like the new and shiny.

Honestly the T61 can handle basic stuff but multitasking is not on the table. Browsers bring it to its knees, though admittedly I'm spoiled and I use tabs lavishly. The screen is the most obvious weakness. So much has improved in resolution and brightness in these 10 years.

But I do expect to squeeze some more use out of it yet. With the older gear it's just about finding the right task for it.
I'm on a CTO 2007 T61 here. I remember ordering it back when you could select SLED as an OS option, which I don't think Lenovo lets you do anymore. Running -current64 multilib with AlienBob's ktown Plasma 5 with no problems at all. I did swap the HD for an SSD and bumped the ram up to the max, which is fairly cheap to do these days compared to back in '07. The biggest difference maker however was upgrading the 65W power brick up to the 90W version. This allows the T8300 CPU to step all the way up to full clock (2.4 GHz) instead of only about half way.

The battery is long dead, so she's not much of a laptop anymore. However, since I'm no longer crossing campus with it suspended all the time, it's not a big deal.

Here's hoping she gets me to 2027.
 
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Old 04-22-2019, 01:17 PM   #34
phalange
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upnort View Post
I have a 486 with Slackware 11.0 installed along side WFWG 3.11.
That's so cool. I was cleaning out just this month and found my full set of WFWG 3.11 floppies. I pitched them, but fondly reminisced. At the time I had that Win3.11 system for 'work' and a Mac running OS6 or 7 for 'fun'. I liked using DOS on the Win system too. It was a homemade Franken-486.


Quote:
Originally Posted by cowpoke View Post
I'm on a CTO 2007 T61 here. I remember ordering it back when you could select SLED as an OS option, which I don't think Lenovo lets you do anymore. Running -current64 multilib with AlienBob's ktown Plasma 5 with no problems at all. I did swap the HD for an SSD and bumped the ram up to the max, which is fairly cheap to do these days compared to back in '07. The biggest difference maker however was upgrading the 65W power brick up to the 90W version. This allows the T8300 CPU to step all the way up to full clock (2.4 GHz) instead of only about half way.

The battery is long dead, so she's not much of a laptop anymore. However, since I'm no longer crossing campus with it suspended all the time, it's not a big deal.

Here's hoping she gets me to 2027.
I didn't know that about the power supply. This thread motivated me to put a spare 480 Sandisk SSD in, and that was a surprising improvement. I know there's a custom bios (Middleton) that bumps the bus to 3GB/s, but even at the normal bus speed 1.5GB/s, it's more snappy with this SD. I didn't realize the stock drive was so sluggish.

I'm definitely going to see about a 90W PS. I bought a 65W for about 10 bucks, and skipped the 90W thinking it was overkill. Thanks for posting this.
 
Old 04-23-2019, 02:51 AM   #35
herring_sucker
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I've got an HP xw4600 workstation mid-tower from 2008. It's an Intel Core 2 Duo that came with 160GB hard drive, 1GB of memory, and an NVIDIA Quadro NVS 290 video card.

It's had a few upgrades: a second 500GB hard drive, an new DVD player (the original one sounded like a dump truck when it ran), a new video card (the old one croaked) and 8GB of memory. Slackware 14.2 64-bit.

It still works fine, and for what I need it to do, it's fast enough. I'll probably keep going with it until it gives up the ghost.

As a backup, a couple of years ago I got a Lenovo T400 laptop. I found out that it's a tough machine. A couple of days after I got it, I accidentally knocked it off the table while it was open. Not a scratch on it.
 
Old 04-23-2019, 06:54 AM   #36
hazel
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My last tower had an Intel Core2 Duo. It served me for years until the battery folded and I found that it was soldered on (or stuck on with corrosion products) and couldn't be changed. There was no video card, just Intel graphics on the mobo.

When I finally took it to the dump, having removed and trashed the hard drive, I was amazed at how heavy it was.
 
Old 04-23-2019, 07:16 AM   #37
EdGr
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My oldest PC is a Dell laptop from 2006 with a 2GHz Core Duo processor, 1GB ram, and 100GB disk. It runs Slackware-current. I use the laptop to play music and video. It is the last 32-bit PC that I own.

Quite impressively, the laptop can compile a custom kernel. It takes 2.5 hours. For comparison, my 8-core HEDT from 2014 takes 11 minutes.
Ed
 
Old 04-23-2019, 07:34 AM   #38
ehartman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herring_sucker View Post
I've got an HP xw4600 workstation mid-tower from 2008. It's an Intel Core 2 Duo that came with 160GB hard drive, 1GB of memory, and an NVIDIA Quadro NVS 290 video card.
Mine is about a year newer:
Intel Core 2 Duo CPU E7600 @ 3.0GHz with 4 GB of RAM and a Seagate 250 GB disk.
The Video card is a
NVIDIA Corporation G71GL [Quadro FX 1500] (with rather noisy ventilator).

I had to replace the DVD-rom drive already (with a DVD-writer) and have extended the system with a Toshiba 2 TB 2nd disk, a Adaptec AIC-7892A U160/m (29160) SCSI adaptor, which connects to a HP DDS 4 autochanger tape drive (max 6 cartridges).
Oh, and I'm using the e-Sata connector with an external docking station, in which I can put various disk drives for backup purposes.

Last edited by ehartman; 04-23-2019 at 07:35 AM.
 
Old 04-24-2019, 05:31 PM   #39
slac-in-the-box
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I still use old hardware, but I'm gradually phasing it out:

I've been equipping 8-year old children with old asus eeepc netbooks -- both 32bit and 64bit versions... some even have ssds! I never spend over $100 on a laptop for 8-year-olds... and these were all ebay scores. I set them up with xfce4, with large launchers for gcompris, ktouch, tuxtype, and emacs (never too young to learn emacs!) I remove the bsd-games, because the startup quotes are sometimes unsuitable for their ages, and I configured iptables to block all internet (gonna add a whitelist later)...

As an experiment, I got a rpi3, put slackwarearm-current on it, and connected it to portable display (was over $100 with display), and the weight of the rpi mounted to the back of the topside of the display, as well as attached mouse cable, caused it to fall over again and again until it broke; and the old netbooks still were still snappier; but I think this rpis sluggishness was the sdcard, because it was fast once working with ram. Plus there was no rtc in the rpi, so next try will be with orangepi and ssd.

However, the old hardware is power hungry. I am interested in migrating to ARM8 devices with long battery life, like the pinebook, which debuts for a c-note... I think the older hardware's lack of battery life makes them less sustainable these days--not to mention all the dead RTCs...
 
Old 04-24-2019, 05:37 PM   #40
andrew.46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phalange View Post
That's so cool. I was cleaning out just this month and found my full set of WFWG 3.11 floppies. I pitched them, but fondly reminisced. At the time I had that Win3.11 system for 'work' and a Mac running OS6 or 7 for 'fun'. I liked using DOS on the Win system too. It was a homemade Franken-486.
You have missed an opportunity for wealth....
 
Old 04-24-2019, 06:36 PM   #41
upnort
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Quote:
I was cleaning out just this month and found my full set of WFWG 3.11 floppies.
I have my original floppy disks for WFWG, Norton Desktop, MSOffice 6, WordPerfect for DOS, FrameMaker 4,and others. I doubt the disks function anymore, but many years ago I copied all floppies to a hard drive. I could recreate the floppies -- if I had blanks. Perhaps some day I'll fiddle with them in VMs -- no physical disks required.

I also have original 5-1/4" disks. The 486 system is the only one in the house with a drive to read those floppies, if they work at all.

I have all of my original WFWG and DOS tech manuals too. Collecting dust on a basement shelf. With those books anyone can become a system.ini or win.ini expert.

BTW, years ago when I bought my Pentium I system, I copied the WFWG partition from the 486 to that system. WFWG screams on the PI. Puts modern software to shame with respect to the speed.
 
Old 04-25-2019, 12:51 PM   #42
phalange
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrew.46 View Post
You have missed an opportunity [/URL].
And mine didn't even have that Dell branding on them...

Quote:
Originally Posted by upnort View Post
I have my original floppy disks for WFWG, Norton Desktop, MSOffice 6, WordPerfect for DOS, FrameMaker 4,and others.
Yup, that was my system too.

Quote:
I have all of my original WFWG and DOS tech manuals too. Collecting dust on a basement shelf. With those books anyone can become a system.ini or win.ini expert.
Had to have those. I think it was the DOS 6 manual at the time? Truly great works of literature. I remember reading them cover to cover.


Quote:
BTW, years ago when I bought my Pentium I system, I copied the WFWG partition from the 486 to that system. WFWG screams on the PI. Puts modern software to shame with respect to the speed.
I'm sure. Those early devices didn't have a lot of headroom.

Last edited by phalange; 04-25-2019 at 12:54 PM.
 
Old 04-25-2019, 07:07 PM   #43
rkelsen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phalange View Post
I think it was the DOS 6 manual at the time?
DOS 5 was the last Microsoft product to come with a decent manual.

The DOS 6 manual was anorexic by comparison, and was really just an addendum to the DOS 5 manual.
 
Old 04-26-2019, 04:25 AM   #44
fatmac
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A lot of old software was written in assembler, nowadays it's written in python, that will make quite a bit of difference in speed.
 
Old 04-26-2019, 08:48 AM   #45
upnort
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Quote:
DOS 5 was the last Microsoft product to come with a decent manual.
The DOS 6 manual was anorexic by comparison, and was really just an addendum to the DOS 5 manual.
I checked my collection. I have both manuals. The DOS 5 book is thick, the DOS 6 manual is thin. Lots of other manuals too. Interesting to remember the days when vendors provided dead tree manuals for users.
 
  


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