Recommended Linux OS for an old Dell clean install?



sp331yi

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Vicktoria

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I'll try again, and no I didn't click on the words boot menu/order. Also, I had the Dell on a stool and as I knelt before it I found another optical drive. So now I have two avenues to work. Unfortunately I'm weakest when it comes to software. It is possible I'm not making a bootable CD properly, or that the iso I have are not in proper form. I've tried DSL a couple of times. I did get anti-X on a jump, yet that is a terminal program, and too much for me on a daily basis. So I'll try again to make a bootable CD or DVD for Linux Lite, as well as test the CD player to make sure it works. I think it does as I got a terminal screen when I put the DSL disk in, but I didn't know what to do with it. It showed the two optical drive names, one being slave and one master. I don't know which is which. Haven't opened this Dell yet. It gives a command line "A:\>" I tried using sudo and root with some variations of boot CD/DSL. No luck. So I will report on the next experiments. Thank you all for your time and expertise. I used 'Burnaware' to make the CD. Not sure it works. Will try it on the xpmachine.

Looks like the functioning OD in the front of machine is the slave labeled USB20FD, and the other is labeled CD drive.
 
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Vrai

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We're talking about a Dell Inspiron 8000, correct? Don't know where the Optiplex 380 came in unless an example of Dell and F12 key. Here's something noteworthy about the Inspiron 8000:
https://lukelaptops.fandom.com/wiki/Dell_Inspiron_8000

And, Victoria, it looks like an optical drive is in order -- although I don't know if I, myself, would sink any money into it!
I was not aware of that "quirk" :/
That is very good information to have.
Will file it away for future reference.
Thanks! :)
 

Vicktoria

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Good ole' Speccy shows the side one as OD D: which is a DVD reader, and the front drive is OD E which is a CD burner and does play CDs, which Drive D did not play and it is suppose to read them. So I think it is dead. Need to test bootables on XP machine to see if i'm making them properly. Still need to try to click on 'Boot Menu' title. I'll let you know, and will read what you all suggested. Thanks
 

Vicktoria

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eureka! of sorts. I did evidently make a bootable CD with DSL on it, yet it only went as far as the boot screen and did not actually open the OS. Then I remembered I had some disks with various Kubuntu on them. Tried Kubuntu 8 and that didn't install properly...or open, I was testing before an install attempt. Got 2 or more screens...two mouse pointers. Trying Jaunty 32 bit now. Looks like I'm getting the 2 mouse deal again. Dang! So at least we know this might work if I get the right OS.
 

VP9KS

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Just another brick in the wall of your education!:) Keep on trucking! Does the laptop have a built in track pad?
 

Vicktoria

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Howdy Folks, well we finally have Linux on the Dell. Tried Kubuntu Hardy, and Jaunty Intrepid. Finally Kubuntu 6.06 installed. Through it all, if I got far enough to enter password, there were at least 2 screens layered upon each other. Made it hard to work with, and perhaps the others didn't install because i couldn't see the whole screen. Anywho, 6.06 finally did install, and now I have 2 partial screens. My son suggests perhaps it is a driver issue. I may have read something about old Dells and drivers in the article you suggested Sp331yi. So what do you guys think? Is it likely a driver issue? If so, can I download drivers to a usb and get it into the machine? Or do you think it likely some other issue? I suppose it may be possible to hook up the modem and get it on line. Not sure. The screen issue is tricky to work with. Anny suggestions?
 

darry1966

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Vicki those really old versions of Ubuntu might there be something that can run on there. I would suggest Puppy - it can run on really tricky hardware.
 

sp331yi

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Vicktoria

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Thanks Darry, I'll download Puppy next hi speed connection and give it a try. Thought I'd try to put on DSL again since windows is gone. Maybe it will work now.

Sp331yi, I'll check out Exton then as well, Thanks.

Spent yesterday trying to download drivers. found it a couple of times but couldn't get download to work. may need hispeed. Course I wouldn't know where to put it in Linux. Tried to install modem on Kubuntu. That didn't work either. Screen glitch may be the culprit there, yet again software is my weakest area. I really appreciate all the assistance. I'd have given up long ago without your support.
 

sp331yi

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Your Service Tag # would be helpful, as well.
 

sp331yi

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Dell BIOS Update for Inspiron 8000, esp if BIOS won't recognize or boot to USB

You'll need USB functional, so the ability to get an external DVD-ROM/RW drive is present.
Then you'll ve able to install from either CD or DVD. Looks like you're stuck without one!
 

dos2unix

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I do have a couple of old systems like this. I had to buy an external (USB) DVD/BluRay burner.
This particular one doesn't have a power cord, just uses USB power.
They wouldn't boot from USB, but they will boot from the external DVD/CD-Rom drive.
 

Vicktoria

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Wiley One: I just wrote that Service tag #G05BK01 express 34837454593. The USB is functional as is the CD optical drive, yet there is no boot from usb option. I will tackle the plop utility which I take it allows one to change the BIOS so that you can have a boot from usb option. Maybe I can get into that this weekend.
 

sp331yi

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@Vrai -- Bummer about the Service Tag!

@Vicktoria -- I found my old Asus external DVD/CD-ROM. Doesn't Write anymore, but reads just fine.
Will ship it.

Don't know Plop! but have read favorable things bout it here and in other forums.

Maybe I can get into that this weekend.
Good -- don't give up, yet! Everyone here is hoping you get it going! Later, then.

sp331yi
 

darry1966

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Good point Paul, Same with my machines when making usb main boot device followed by hard drive.
 


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