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Why even run Linux?


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#1
pyron81

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I thought Linux was suppose to be the windows killer. Come to find out most distros contain over 5-6 cds in length of files to install on your system most ranging from 1gig or higher. About the only linux I managed to find that will fit on one cd is puppy and [bleep] small. I am not here to stomp on Linux but I can't help but wonder what makes linux so great?!?

Windows XP fits on one disk. Nice easy clean install. Ubuntu on the same system won't even run gnome or KDE. So I try Xbuntu. Won't run. While all I've heard is how flexible Linux is and I find out that it's pretty hard to conform to.

Call me a linux hater...but I just can't see what the hype is all about....would someone like to recommend a linux that would blow my mind? and run on a machine like this ->

800 mhz
256megs of ram
20gig hard drive

I just can't seem to fathom why this machine can run Windows XP like a charm with hardly any slow down and yet refuses to run almost ALL linux distros.

This is my secondary PC not primary. I'd like to run linux on it as a test PC.

Any advice is appreciated. :whistling:

Edited by pyron81, 26 March 2007 - 07:53 PM.

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#2
ThPenguinsRComin

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The first distro I tried was Mandriva One. It's reasonably light, and comes on a single LiveCD as an ISO. Check here if you want to try it. According to them, you just meet the system requirements, though they recommend 512MB of RAM, it says it should run on 256. Graphics card might be an issue, depending on what kind of graphics card you have. I'd just recommend to not use 3D effects of any kind (Compiz/Beryl etc).

Edited by ThPenguinsRComin, 26 March 2007 - 07:54 PM.

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#3
pyron81

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I will download it tonight and attempt to install it tomorrow.

I don't need any cheesy effects I'd just like it to run with more options that what puppy supplies. Which is limited to say the least.
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#4
ThPenguinsRComin

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I enjoyed Mandriva, and I still use the PowerPack free edition on my desktop (which is only 512MB of RAM, and runs fine). Personally, the thing I liked the most about it was wireless support. On both my desktop and my laptop the wireless worked without any real setup, which is more than I can say for my other distro (Fedora).

And you can at least boot into the liveCD first and see how it looks. It's sluggish when you run it live, but you at least get to see it first to make sure it's graphically supported.
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#5
fleamailman

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There are so many distros out there that one of them is bound to be what you want, I still have XP on my wife's machine and vista is running at work, but my laptop is an old dell running kubuntu because if I paid for XP, the office works, the protection and thens upgrades to vista now and then another upgrade to Vienna in 2009, it would cost more than the laptop itself and it would not work, but agreed drivers and playing games is the weakside but to be able to step out of the microsoft malware battle is a real joy, as is the way that one can keep an old machine fairly up to date. Anyway, it is important to have a good forum of the distro one is installing, and if one cannot find the driver it is easier to change the distro, in fact I wish there was a site that would tell me which distros work with which parts, or computer model types. good luck with mandriva then.
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#6
silverbeard

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I personally like Debian flavored distros and have had a long going affair with SimplyMepis as my main system for the last two years. I also like PCLinuxOS and havit on one of my laptops. It's Mandriva based and just works. Though neither of these would be be that good on your specs. You could give the Xfce Debian testing release from here a try. I have the KDE version installed on one machine and it is rock solid and lite on resources. The Xfce version should be even lighter.

but agreed drivers and playing games is the weakside


I have more trouble with windows than I do with Linux when it comes to drivers especially on proprietary big box systems like Dell. I had a Dimensions 2400 come in this week that had issues after a clean install of XPH (not sure how they got the BIOS setting messed up) but it still had to have drivers downloaded and installed before it would allow the display to be set, the sound to work and get on the internet to activate Windows and download the couple of hundred megabytes of updates since SP2 was released. NOw I could have used one of my machines to do the downloading but just for grins and giggles I booted PClinuxOS from live CD and IT loaded the display perfectly along with the sound and the ethernet controller. I downloaded Dells chipset drivers along with the ones for display and sound and the network driver to a thumb drive and booted back into Windows.

Edit: forgot to mention the time spent downloading and installing the AV, Firewall and office suite. Linux distros usually have these out of the box.

As far as games go there is Wine, though not always that good. You also have Code Wearvers Crossover for most Microsoft apps and Cedega if you want to game on Linux. Yes they are commercial but at least Codeweavers puts back into the Winehq Project.

to step out of the microsoft malware battle is a real joy,


True that!

Edited by silverbeard, 27 March 2007 - 02:03 AM.

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#7
pyron81

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I will try both of those and give you an update ASAP.

Thanks for the helpful suggestions. I am really looking forward to getting a good solid linux on this machine.
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#8
thenotch

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Debian distro's are among the least bloated and most stable and usable.

All the RedHat/Fedora distro's are bloated like crazy... i'd avoid them like the plague unless you just need to have all those useless bells and whistles...

If you really want a core install you can install Gentoo and configure it exactly how you want. It does however have a fairly decent learning curve to get it to work properly.
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#9
-=blaster=-

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Give me a break...

Debian is a FIFTEEN cd set and no graphical installer. This is the 21st century.

Fedora is 5 cd's and a graphical installer. And you have a chance to install the packages you want/need.

Redhat forever.

Distrowatch

:whistling:

Edited by -=blaster=-, 28 March 2007 - 08:33 PM.

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#10
silverbeard

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Debian is a FIFTEEN cd set and no graphical installer.


What did you do? Try to down load the whole repository.
Ubuntu (debian based) less than 700MB
SimplyMepis (debian based) <700MB
debian-testing-i386-kde-CD-1 647 MB

Looks like one CD to me. Anything else you need you can use apt-get or one of the package managers to download and install.

And yes they all have graphical installers.
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#11
thenotch

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Give me a break...

Debian is a FIFTEEN cd set and no graphical installer. This is the 21st century.


Debian is one CD... if you want to talk 21st century, download the ONE CD and install the packages you actually NEED via your broadband connection... what? No broadband... get with it, this is the 21st century.. :whistling:

Fedora is 5 cd's and a graphical installer. And you have a chance to install the packages you want/need.


This is no different than any other Distro... the benefit of others is that while you think you are loading only what you want/need, Fedora does not give you all the options to remove things you don't need. At least not without some serious work and digging.

Fedora is great if you have zero clue about Linux, but if that is the case, why are you loading it? And if your answer is to learn more then Fedora is NOT the way to go because it does all the steps for you and you learn nothing...
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#12
Tyler5690

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I'd recommend trying out Zenwalk; its fast and lean with all the essentials and none of the bloat. Zenwalk Home
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#13
Necrotising Fasciitis

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Try Knoppix, i have it running on a PIII 511MHz PC with 128 Mb RAM and it runs great. It's an old release but it's a full featured distro that fits on one CD.
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#14
-OCM770-

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This sounds like an anti-fedora thread. I don't need to say it, you will notice on my sig but fedora in my opinion is the best, its is ONE cd amd easy to install. it IS NOT bloated and is easy to use with KDE OR Gnome.


-OCM770-
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#15
nails21

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pyron81

kubuntu worked like a charm on my laptop with similar specs, only problem was that it didn't recognize my wireless card. It fit on one cd, and worked as a live cd or installation disc. And the k stands for kde, ready to go.

The bloat in other distros tends to be less of an installation issue, as installers on cd 1 only include packages according to what type of install you want (they ask questions, don't worry)--from minimum install, workstation, development platform, or "everything." It only winds up on your system if you want it there. Also, free distros are required to make source code available so if you don't pay attention, you may accidentally double your download.

And as for why linux, everyone has their reasons. Mine was to actually get to know my computer. I still flirt with linux these days, and using linux variations of familiar programs has made me very flexible on my Windows machine. I am open to freeware alternatives to costly proprietary MS programs. And I have learned to use small, fast programs instead of pretty, slow ones.

I want to learn to make my computer do what I want and need it to do, instead of learning to adjust to what my computer can do, and linux seems the best way to learn that.

thanks for listening, and good luck

oh, and a word about downloading...checking integrity with cheksums is important, I've wasted some discs that way...

Edited by nails21, 16 October 2007 - 07:28 AM.

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