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Linux on Old Laptop

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Linux on Old Laptop

Postby Gan » Sun 05.20.2007 11:20 am

Okay this doesnt really have anything about Japanese but I know that a few linux users come here so that is why I am posting in this section. well kinda does because i want to study japanese on it..

I would like linux to run on a Dell Latitude CPi A300ST, Pentium II-300 300MHz 4Gb HDD, Laptop

I've tried knonppix, slax(standart), DSL(worked but not what i'm lookin for) Mandriva 2007 live, Mint Linux, and a ton of other distrubutions.

Not any of them seemed to work correctly. :( My question is "Is there any Distro's of linux that include KDE or Gnome that will work with the hardware specified?"

I've tried repartitioning from file systems and still it does not work, i've downloaded the x86 versions of all of them and still noting. Help me please.

Arigatou Gozaimasu
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby zengargoyle » Sun 05.20.2007 1:48 pm

i would try Slackware or Debian. that machine is *ancient*, most of the help pages for running Linux on CPi machines have either vanished from the internet, or haven't been touched since 2000.

http://www.linux-on-laptops.com/dell.html
http://www.radcyberzine.com/linux/linux-dell.html
http://home.nedlinux.nl/~bart/?page=11
http://cnycomputerservice.com/deblap.html

i doubt the non-mainstream distros will ever work. but maybe the some of the mainstream distros that were actually around back when this laptop was new will have a chance of working. but you'll still have to do lots of configuration and tweaking before getting it to work.
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby clay » Sun 05.20.2007 1:50 pm

How about Damn Small Linux?
http://distrowatch.com/?newsid=03213#0
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby zengargoyle » Sun 05.20.2007 2:36 pm

i think Damn Small Linux is the 'DSL' that he tried and didn't like.
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby clay » Sun 05.20.2007 8:57 pm

:) But at least it worked!
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby HeyItsMatt » Sun 05.20.2007 9:23 pm

I'm still trying to get my foot in the door with Linux and computers, so zen probably knows much more than I do... but perhaps Xubuntu or Puppy Linux would work?

Xubuntu is basically Ubuntu but more lightweight and with the Xfce desktop environment, inteded to be used on older hardware. I dunno though, wikipedia says it requires 1.5gb to install on the hard drive... if I'm reading your post right and you have 4gb total, maybe Xubuntu is too much. I've never tried Puppy Linux but it looks like it is a small, LiveCD-based distribution which you could then install to the hard drive if you wanted.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puppy_linux

I don't think either of these use GNOME or KDE by default. However, perhaps you can change your desktop environment if you don't like the default one... you can on Ubuntu but I don't know if that's necessarily the same for all Linux distributions, since Ubuntu is the only one I've tried so far.
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby Gan » Sun 05.20.2007 10:47 pm

I've used Linux multiple times, just not on a peice of hardware this old. I've tried finding the older versions of distros but no luck. The torrents are not working and neither do the mirrors. I've managed to install a system more on the side of linux but I've agreed to swicth pack to XP because it seems linux isn't really compatable with my setup. I dont know why windows XP works on it though. :o
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby zengargoyle » Sun 05.20.2007 10:53 pm

oooh, yeah, Ubuntu or Xubuntu might work. Ubuntu is a more user friendly fork of Debian. really, the major problem will be KDE/Gnome, they are slightly heavy-weight desktop environments. really, your problems will be network, sound, and video. the Neomagic video/audio chipset in that laptop is very basic, you'll be able to squeeze 16-bit color with a standard SVGA (non-accelerated) X driver, and your audio will be barely working. KDE and/or Gnome will probably bring the machine to it's knees with all of the eye-candy.

on the other hand, my first Linux box was a 486 DX 100MHz with 16M ram and an 8-bit soundblaster audio card. with a light-weight window manager like TWM or FVWM, even this ancient laptop will make a fine (if a bit slow) machine.... big things like GIMP and OpenOffice might take a while to open and be a bit lethargic, but it's more than enough for web browsing.

i'm not a big fanboy of Gnome/KDE type stuff, i still use the same old programs that i used back in the early 90's, and all i notice is that things go faster, and pictures have more colors, and screens have better resolutions. otherwise i can't really tell the difference between my bitchin' fast desktop computer and the computer that i used 15 years ago... :)
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RE: Linux on Old Laptop

Postby aztec105 » Sat 07.07.2007 6:13 pm

Hello I don't know if you were successful or not in installing debian on this system... I am doing the exact same thing right now. A few things I have noted so far the current etch release will not install form the distros currently available for Etch. It fails on the cdrom-detect phase of install. This seems to be something that has plagued the Debian installer for a few years. I am surprised this keeps getting broken.

I was able to successfully install from Debian 3.1 r3 i3 install CD ..changing the apt repository to oldstable updated/graded then immediately after this changed the apt repository to stable, run update then before anything else install 2.6 kernel, reboot and do a full upgrade. Then installed gnome.
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