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Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Dibyalok, Feb 13, 2018.

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Is it good to use Linux in an old laptop

  1. Yes

    95.1%
  2. No

    4.9%
  1. Dibyalok

    Dibyalok New Member

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    It has been nearly 2 hours that I started browsing and learning about Linux. I am a complete novice when it comes to Linux. I just know a few basic things. I have an old HP 500 laptop running on Windows XP PROFESSIONAL it's specs are given in this link-



    https://www.cnet.com/products/hp-50...in-xp-home-512-mb-ram-60-gb-hdd-series/specs/.

    I want to know which distro might be good for it . I want to use it just for browsing, personalization and day to day office work.

    I also wanted a guide to how to install distro as I don't know anything about it.

    It would be a great help if anyone helps me.
     
    wizardfromoz likes this.
  2. atanere

    atanere Moderator
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    Hi @Dibyalok, and welcome to the site! There is much to learn, and it will take time.... many things in Linux uses different terminology than Windows or Mac. So take your time, and ask more questions as you need to. Please look around on this site, and other places on the Internet, to learn all you can about Linux. There is no place that says "Start here".... so you just have to jump in and begin.

    The specs on your laptop say it has 512 MB of RAM, but it can go up to 1 GB. Do you know if it has been upgraded to 1 GB yet? And if not, are you willing to upgrade it yourself? It is a pretty big difference between which Linux versions will run depending on the amount of RAM. If you don't want to spend any money on it, then we will do what we can to help you find something that will run on 512 MB.

    A quick check on your CPU from the specs says that it is a 32-bit chip, so that will limit your choices in Linux too. For now there are still quite a few distros available in 32-bit, so the RAM is the more limiting factor.

    Do you want to erase the Windows XP system and replace it with Linux? Or do you want to try to have both together? The hard drive is also quite small to hold two operating systems, and Windows may have it fairly filled up by now. It really is a good time to get rid of XP since it is no longer supported by Microsoft, but you may need to save photos and other documents before installing Linux.

    Do you have another computer to work from? Or is this laptop your only computer?

    That's all the questions for this round. Let's see where you want to go from here.

    Cheers
     
    wizardfromoz likes this.
  3. Dibyalok

    Dibyalok New Member

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    Thank you very much for replying me
    No the ram is not upgraded and I want to replace XP with Linux
    Yes I have another desktop with me it's just that my father gifted me the
    laptop and I want to continue to use it
    Thanks again for helping me.
     
    wizardfromoz likes this.
  4. atanere

    atanere Moderator
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    OK, well, let's take a bit of time and see if any of the Linux distros on this recent list have any appeal to you. I would discourage Arch (too hard for new people) and Manjaro (says it needs 1 GB of RAM). It looks like Bodhi, Puppy, Lubuntu, and antiX might be the best to start with since they all have RAM requirements less than 512 MB... except the Lubuntu specs are not quite up to date (see here that Lubuntu 17.04 needs from 512 MB to 1 GB).

    You should realize that these low-RAM versions are not quite what I would call "mainstream" (even though they are current in their development and quite capable with what they can do with so little RAM). They frequently use built-in apps that also have low requirements for RAM, so you may not get the more "mainstream" apps, such as Firefox, Google Chrome, or LibreOffice (antiX does offer LibreOffice). It's just part of the trade-off you have to deal with, but these trade-offs help to make these distros run as smoothly as possible. If you choose the other distros on the list, those with a minimum of 512 MB RAM requirements (Linux Lite, Ubuntu MATE, LXLE, or Peppermint OS).... you get a more "mainstream" Linux and included apps, but the operation may be sluggish since you are barely meeting the requirements.

    You can download the .iso file for one, or all that you want to try out, and get ready to burn them to CD or DVD. If you see the "MD5SUM" or "SHA256SUM" file with the .iso, get that too. We would like to teach you how to "verify" that the downloaded .iso is complete and not corrupted (saves you from bad installations sometimes). After verifying the download is good, you need to burn the .iso to CD/DVD with a special tool in the CD burning software called "burn image". The software in XP doesn't usually have that unless you installed other burning software, but maybe your other computer can do this. The CD/DVD method is probably the best way... your computer specs say that you have a DVD-RW drive, the blank disks are cheap, and once you create them you can boot on the CD/DVD and try out each one in "live" mode before you install it.

    OK, let's see if you got all that, and if you can successfully get the files downloaded and burned to CD/DVD. (So don't just "copy" the files to the CD... they won't boot unless you do the special "burn image" that I mentioned). Here is a nice free Windows program to help you verify the downloads with the checksum files, which you want to do before burning the disks. If your CD burning software doesn't do "burn image".... let us know and we'll try to help you find a free program for that too. Whichever Linux you find interesting, try browsing around their website, read their blogs or FAQ's, look through the help sections or forums, and try to learn whatever you can absorb from them while you're there.
     
    wizardfromoz likes this.

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