[Wolves] Thanx and Question

Dave Morley davmor2 at davmor2.co.uk
Mon Jun 15 09:29:35 UTC 2009

On Mon, 2009-06-15 at 10:12 +0100, Adam Sweet wrote:
> dick_turpin wrote:
> > Octavio Augusto Sánchez Velázquez wrote:
> >> Thanx everybody for the welcome, now, I have a question.
> >> My mom has this laptop which she only uses for presentations and it is
> >> dam slow. Of course it has windows XP I want to kill this OS of her
> >> laptop and get a useful one. it is a Compaq presario 700 with a mobile
> >> AMD Duron Processor at 493 MHz (I know, it is an old one) 112 MB ram.
> >> So my question is What distro should it fits best for my mom. It must be
> >> possible to install a desktop manager, as long as my mom would not
> >> understand the CLI. and She requires some presentations maker, something
> >> compatible with ppt. and a word processor compatible with .doc Thank you
> >> very much...
> >>   
> > Hi Octavio
> > 
> > All the Buntu fanboys/girls will of course say Ubuntu however as your
> > mum is a soon to be ex XP bod you might consider Mandriva its one of the
> > easiest distros and makes most XP users feel at home.
> I expect that the memory foot print of Mandriva or any full scale Linux
> distribution will be way too much for this machine. I imagine this
> machine is really grinding on the disk at the moment. Your best option
> for this machine to be comfortable to use would be to fill the machine
> with as much RAM as possible and then use a light-weight desktop
> environment such Xubuntu, Puppy Linux, Damn Small Linux and so on.
> You can find out about the maximum installable memory for this machine
> under Windows by using the online tool on memory manufacturer Crucial's
> website:
> http://www.crucial.com/uk/
> or I think the program Si-Soft Sandra used to tell you.
> Under Linux, use dmidecode, I found that you have to run it as root
> rather than sudo to avoid typing your password in blindly because 'less'
> collects all output before displaying anything:
> adams at selenium:~$ sudo su -
> root at selenium:~# dmidecode | less
> then look for Memory Controller Information to see what is installable
> and the Memory Module Information sections to see what modules you have.
> It was a good day when I discovered that trick :)
> The Crucial website will offer you compatible memory if your laptop is
> in their database, it should be, being a Compaq. Older memory isn't as
> cheap as you think though, because less of it is made, so if more memory
> isn't an option, just use the lightest weight desktop environment you
> can. It may take some playing with different distros to find one with
> the right balance of performance and features.
> Another point, if your mom needs a presentation app, the only one I know
> is OpenOffice Impress and OpenOffice is horrific with regards to memory,
> a quick test shows that it will use about half of your existing memory
> straight away. There may be other alteratives that I don't know about,
> but certain OO Impress will be the most full featured with regards to
> Powerpoint compatibility, from there downwards, it will be a sliding
> scale of compatibility.
> If you don't mind the machine swapping to disk all the time and being
> really slow as a result, as it probably is right now, then you might be
> able to get away with a larger desktop environment and OpenOffice.
> Hope I'm not putting you off, I'm just setting some expectations. Unless
> you can get some extra RAM, it could be hard going and chances are that
> your mom won't be happy with the same performance as Windows XP under an
> unfamiliar environment :(
> Regards,
> Ad

Ad nice tip did you know that sudo -s is the ubuntu recommended way to
get a root shell though?  It is marginally cleaner log wise etc
Seek That Thy Might Know

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