[Nottingham] Distro reccomendations for older PC

Stella Fan stellafan at jjsh.org
Mon Jul 31 19:14:31 BST 2006

This is my first post to the NLUG, so be gentle with me!

I've got an old PC here that I want to install Linux on to play around 
with. Its a home build Athlon  XP 1800+, with 512Mb RAM, 80Gb maxtor, 
Radeon 9200SE. So nothing very special. It will be fitted with a 
wireless card I've got to hand, which is based on the Railink chipset, 
so there are native linux drivers available.

Although I have used Linux quite a lot as a server OS, it has always 
been by using a 'tailored' distro, such as SME Server. I want to build 
this as a desktop machine. I thus have limited knowledge of the various 
window managers, and getting hardware to work manually. Installing SME 
on a redhat certified server is a piece of cake, which is nice, but 
doesn't teach you a lot.

My main problem is that I need the wireless to work out of the box with 
minimal configuration. I don't mind learning everything else the hard 
way, but having the Internet available as a help resource would be a 

I have tried a few live CD distro's, KUbuntu, XUbuntu, CentOS, and 
VectorLinux, but none of them seemed to recognise my wireless card out 
of the box. However (just to complicate things) this was with it stuffed 
into an old Compaq Deskpro, and I'm not totally convinced the PCI bus 
was up to the job.

So, what would your suggestions be?



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