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'[OT] Linux for rescuing dumped computers?'
2007\11\27@112049 by Matthew Rhys-Roberts

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I'm very interested in using Linux on old unwanted computers, in order
to prevent waste and generate some useful gifts.

I've had some success so far, but it seems that X requires a large
amount of memory in order to provide a reliable GUI, which seems to rule
out systems with less than a good few hundred Mb of RAM.

I suppose my question is, does anyone recommend a version of Linux these
days that can run on a bare minimum of RAM and still provide a graphical
operating system?

Thanks

Matt Rhys-Roberts

2007\11\27@115425 by Harold Hallikainen

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> I'm very interested in using Linux on old unwanted computers, in order
> to prevent waste and generate some useful gifts.
>
> I've had some success so far, but it seems that X requires a large
> amount of memory in order to provide a reliable GUI, which seems to rule
> out systems with less than a good few hundred Mb of RAM.
>
> I suppose my question is, does anyone recommend a version of Linux these
> days that can run on a bare minimum of RAM and still provide a graphical
> operating system?
>
> Thanks
>
> Matt Rhys-Roberts


I'm running Puppy Linux (http://www.puppylinux.org) on my wife's small
notebook computer, and it works very well. Fedora worked very slowly. I'm
quite impressed with Puppy!

Harold


--
FCC Rules Updated Daily at http://www.hallikainen.com - Advertising
opportunities available!

2007\11\27@120750 by Alex Harford

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On Nov 27, 2007 8:14 AM, Matthew Rhys-Roberts <spam_OUTmattTakeThisOuTspamnu-ins.com> wrote:
> I'm very interested in using Linux on old unwanted computers, in order
> to prevent waste and generate some useful gifts.

Do you have a FreeGeek chapter in your area?  You might find some like
minded people there.

Puppy Linux (although I've never used it personally) might work for you:
http://puppylinux.org/wikka/HardDiskInstall

Alex

2007\11\27@121534 by Hector Martin

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Matthew Rhys-Roberts wrote:
> I suppose my question is, does anyone recommend a version of Linux these
> days that can run on a bare minimum of RAM and still provide a graphical
> operating system?

Try Xubuntu. X itself isn't that bad, but KDE and Gnome aren't really
meant for old computers. XFCE is a nice leaner alternative. You can also
try things such as Fluxbox or IceWM for even less RAM usage.

Default Xubuntu is supposed to run decently with 64MB RAM, and nicely
with 128MB. I'm sure you can trim things to make it even better. Another
option is Fluxbuntu, which uses fluxbox. Going even lower, look for
ubuntulite.

--
Hector Martin (.....hectorKILLspamspam@spam@marcansoft.com)
Public Key: http://www.marcansoft.com/marcan.asc

2007\11\27@121715 by Paul Hutchinson

picon face
> -----Original Message-----
> From: piclist-bouncesspamKILLspammit.edu On Behalf Of Matthew Rhys-Roberts
> Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 11:15 AM
>
> I'm very interested in using Linux on old unwanted computers, in order
> to prevent waste and generate some useful gifts.
>
> I've had some success so far, but it seems that X requires a large
> amount of memory in order to provide a reliable GUI, which seems to rule
> out systems with less than a good few hundred Mb of RAM.
>
> I suppose my question is, does anyone recommend a version of Linux these
> days that can run on a bare minimum of RAM and still provide a graphical
> operating system?

I've been trying out various distro's for this same reason lately. The best
choice I've found for low memory PC's is Puppy Linux
http://www.puppylinux.org. However I've found that 128Meg of RAM is the
minimum that allows X to run smoothly even on Puppy. Xubuntu
http://www.xubuntu.org is another good choice for older PC's but it uses
more resources than Puppy.

Paul Hutch

>
> Thanks
>
> Matt Rhys-Roberts

2007\11\27@140444 by Richard Prosser

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Matthew,

I'd add to those recommending puppy. I'm running it on an old laptop & it's
stable. (128mbyte memory). This includes wifi networking with a PCMCIA card.
A swap file is required however which does slow it down somewhat. There is
meant to be a new version "dingo" aimed at the older, slower PCs but this is
still in beta testing. Otherwise there are a variety of reduced capability
versions "meanpuppy" being one also aimed at this use.

"Damn small linux" is also claimed to be usable on older PCs but I haven't
tried it.

I haven't yet got puppy working on my 32MByte laptop but it seems to get
close at times even though the idea appears ridiculous. (We'll see what
happens with Dingo).

RP

On 28/11/2007, Paul Hutchinson <.....paullhutchinsonKILLspamspam.....yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> > {Original Message removed}

2007\11\29@181835 by Martin K

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I remember running Slackware on machines with as little as 16MB. I don't
know if I ran X though. You should be able to run X on just about
anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.
-
Martin

Richard Prosser wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2007\11\29@185122 by Neil Cherry

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Martin K wrote:
> I remember running Slackware on machines with as little as 16MB. I don't
> know if I ran X though. You should be able to run X on just about
> anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.

I remember using a 16MHz 386sx with 16M of ram and 120M drive. Heck
I still have that box. It ran X and it took about 28 hours to
recompile the kernel (if there were no errors).

--
Linux Home Automation         Neil Cherry       EraseMEncherryspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTlinuxha.com
http://www.linuxha.com/                         Main site
http://linuxha.blogspot.com/                    My HA Blog
Author of:            Linux Smart Homes For Dummies

2007\11\30@000659 by Xiaofan Chen

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On Nov 30, 2007 7:18 AM, Martin K <martinspamspam_OUTnnytech.net> wrote:
> I remember running Slackware on machines with as little as 16MB. I don't
> know if I ran X though. You should be able to run X on just about
> anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.
>

I ran Slackware 3.5 and Redhat 5.1 on a DEC PC (486DX2 with 16MB
RAM and 100MB HDD), both with X, the window manage is the plain
fvwm. That was about 9 years ago. Windows 95 was also running.

Other Unix (Eg: Microsoft/SCO Xenix) actually ran on 8086/8088
(original ICM PC was using 8088).

Xiaofan

2007\11\30@001053 by William \Chops\ Westfield

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On Nov 29, 2007, at 3:18 PM, Martin K wrote:

> You should be able to run X on just about
> anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.

That matches my expectation.  I ran X with text-based xterms
back on a 90MHz Pentium that probably had less than 64M and
recall it being pretty zippy.  Not to mention all those NCD
"X terminals" that used to be our default development environment.

Now, trying to run a "modern" GUI desktop environment (or
applications)on top of X is an entirely different kettle of
fish.  I hope the associated developers found it appropriately
humbling when their memory requirements got closer and closer
to that of windows as their feature set got closer to windows.

Sigh.
BillW

2007\11\30@002613 by Xiaofan Chen

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On Nov 30, 2007 1:10 PM, William Chops Westfield <@spam@westfwKILLspamspammac.com> wrote:

> Now, trying to run a "modern" GUI desktop environment (or
> applications)on top of X is an entirely different kettle of
> fish.  I hope the associated developers found it appropriately
> humbling when their memory requirements got closer and closer
> to that of windows as their feature set got closer to windows.
>

This matches the development on the hardware side, companies
like Intel/AMD. HP/Dell/etc and Microsoft need to earn money. So
Vista is out to force you to upgrade your RAM and Graphic card.

Linux is actually not too bad because you have more choices.
You do not like KDE/Gnome? No problem, try XFCE. That is
still to heavyweight? You can always use FVWM2. Even that
is too heavyweight? Drop back to plain console.

Xiaofan

2007\11\30@060400 by Matthew Rhys-Roberts

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Thanks everybody for the feedback so far. Having done a fair bit of PIC
assembly coding over the last few months, I now really see the
phenomenon of commercial software expanding to fill ever cheaper and
faster computer space, while performance seems to stand still.

Small is beautiful, generally speaking.

Matt


Xiaofan Chen wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2007\11\30@063446 by Jake Anderson

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Matthew Rhys-Roberts wrote:
> I'm very interested in using Linux on old unwanted computers, in order
> to prevent waste and generate some useful gifts.
>
> I've had some success so far, but it seems that X requires a large
> amount of memory in order to provide a reliable GUI, which seems to rule
> out systems with less than a good few hundred Mb of RAM.
>
> I suppose my question is, does anyone recommend a version of Linux these
> days that can run on a bare minimum of RAM and still provide a graphical
> operating system?
>
> Thanks
>
> Matt Rhys-Roberts
>  

I run damn small on my P1 266 with 64mb ram and it is acceptable even
with a few firefox instances running. I have added a 512mb swap file
(but thats just because i have a 12gb disk in there). The swap file just
stops the system from dying when it runs out of ram. Even so the
swapping to disk isn't that bad if you don't multi-task wildly. I'd love
a damn small linux variant that was aimed squarely at a hard disk
install, To the point it would trim the kernel etc to fit just perfectly
your hardware. (perhaps with the aid of a networked compiling computer
to do the heavy lifting ;->)

2007\11\30@064852 by Apptech

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>> This matches the development on the hardware side,
>> companies
>> like Intel/AMD. HP/Dell/etc and Microsoft need to earn
>> money. So
>> Vista is out to force you to upgrade your RAM and Graphic
>> card.

I hear (what would I know) that Vista is substantially
slower on the same box as XP in most instances and that the
"best" XP variant is about twice as fast as the best Vista
on a comparable machine. 2:1 seems rather too much to
believe.

I also read a few days ago that XP SP3 now in Beta, when
tested by industry based testers (ie not by uSoft) added
about 10% speed to XP on average (how long is a piece of
benchmark). This result was not something that the testers
were expecting.

Sounds like Win XP Pro SP3 may be hot property for a while
yet.



       Russell

2007\11\30@071909 by Xiaofan Chen

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On Nov 30, 2007 7:45 PM, Apptech <RemoveMEapptechTakeThisOuTspamparadise.net.nz> wrote:

> I hear (what would I know) that Vista is substantially
> slower on the same box as XP in most instances and that the
> "best" XP variant is about twice as fast as the best Vista
> on a comparable machine. 2:1 seems rather too much to
> believe.
>
> I also read a few days ago that XP SP3 now in Beta, when
> tested by industry based testers (ie not by uSoft) added
> about 10% speed to XP on average (how long is a piece of
> benchmark). This result was not something that the testers
> were expecting.
>
> Sounds like Win XP Pro SP3 may be hot property for a while
> yet.
>

XP will be around for a while but Vista will take over gradually.
Win2k+Office2k beats Windows XP+Office XP in terms of
performance. However XP soon takes over because of better
hardware support. Windows XP SP2 is one of the most successful
OS for Microsoft (Windows 98SE is another one). But Vista SP2
will be very good as well.

Vista is supposed to be more about security than performance.
In the current job, Windows XP SP2 and Office XP are still the
standard and IE7 is blocked. However the IT department
say they will support Windows Vista, Office 2007 and IE7
in the near future.

Xiaofan

2007\11\30@072103 by Xiaofan Chen

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On Nov 30, 2007 8:17 PM, Xiaofan Chen <spamBeGonexiaofancspamBeGonespamgmail.com> wrote:
> On Nov 30, 2007 7:34 PM, Jake Anderson <TakeThisOuTjakeEraseMEspamspam_OUTvapourforge.com> wrote:
> > I run damn small on my P1 266 with 64mb ram and it is acceptable even
> > with a few firefox instances running. I have added a 512mb swap file
> > (but thats just because i have a 12gb disk in there).
>
> Actually Windows 98SE runs very well on Pentimu 1-200 as well with
> 64MB Ram.
>

That being said, Windows 98SE is no longer supported by Microsoft.
So I will not run it. On the other hand, some Linux distros runs fine
on it and they are supported.

I would not want to run memory hogger like Firefox on those
computer though.

Xiaofan

2007\11\30@072422 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On Nov 30, 2007 7:34 PM, Jake Anderson <RemoveMEjakespamTakeThisOuTvapourforge.com> wrote:
> I run damn small on my P1 266 with 64mb ram and it is acceptable even
> with a few firefox instances running. I have added a 512mb swap file
> (but thats just because i have a 12gb disk in there).

Actually Windows 98SE runs very well on Pentimu 1-200 as well with
64MB Ram.

Xiaofan

2007\11\30@104213 by Martin Klingensmith

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Neil Cherry wrote:
> Martin K wrote:
>  
>> I remember running Slackware on machines with as little as 16MB. I don't
>> know if I ran X though. You should be able to run X on just about
>> anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.
>>    
>
> I remember using a 16MHz 386sx with 16M of ram and 120M drive. Heck
> I still have that box. It ran X and it took about 28 hours to
> recompile the kernel (if there were no errors).
>
>  
Remember trying to download ISOs over dialup? 2 days or more was the
norm for me. Needless to say I used the same install CD for quite a
while and did incremental upgrades.

-
Martin

2007\11\30@122241 by Matt Pobursky

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On Fri, 30 Nov 2007 20:11:07 +0800, Xiaofan Chen wrote:
> On Nov 30, 2007 7:45 PM, Apptech <apptechEraseMEspam.....paradise.net.nz> wrote:
>
>> I hear (what would I know) that Vista is substantially slower on the
>> same box as XP in most instances and that the "best" XP variant is
>> about twice as fast as the best Vista on a comparable machine. 2:1
>> seems rather too much to believe.
>>
>> I also read a few days ago that XP SP3 now in Beta, when tested by
>> industry based testers (ie not by uSoft) added about 10% speed to XP on
>> average (how long is a piece of benchmark). This result was not
>> something that the testers were expecting.
>>
>> Sounds like Win XP Pro SP3 may be hot property for a while yet.
>>
>>
> XP will be around for a while but Vista will take over gradually.
> Win2k+Office2k beats Windows XP+Office XP in terms of performance.
> However XP soon takes over because of better hardware support.

I'm still using Win2K for all (7) of the workstations and servers in our
office here. Office97 Pro was the last version of Office we bought and use.
We are using it less and less and migrating towards OpenOffice.org. We
don't use any Microsoft browsers (except where forced to), no Microsoft
email programs or firewalls. We have had no serious security or virus
issues. In fact, real-time antivirus is turned off on all the machines. It
simply isn't needed.

I was a bit concerned about drivers too but I've found that the Win2K and
XP drivers are so similar that anyone that develops XP drivers also
develops Win2K drivers. Many times they are exactly the same driver. Once
(if) that situation changes then I will consider another OS. It won't be
Vista though.

We also use Win2K for all of our production test sets. It's simply been
extremely reliable on all our production computers as well as office
computers. The machine I'm typing this email on has not been re-booted in
almost 4 months.

> Windows XP SP2 is one of the most successful OS for Microsoft (Windows
> 98SE is another one). But Vista SP2 will be very good as well.

You have a lot more confidence in Microsoft than I have. ;-)

Microsoft is not about doing anything well or being "best in class". They
are about whatever they can get people to pay for, be it by forced
upgrades, scaring corporate IT people ("no one ever got fired for buying
[IBM][Microsoft]") or forcing OEMs to pre-install Microsoft's chosen OS
flavor of the month. What the end user wants is pretty much irrelevant
-- "You'll take what we give you and like it!".

Name me a single end user that *wanted* product activation, DRM, and the
like. Other than these things plus a little prettier (in some people's
opinions) user interface that is essentially all that was changed in WinXP
from Win2K.

> Vista is supposed to be more about security than performance.

This is another thing I have a hard time agreeing with. So far it appears
that Vista is not all that much more secure than most of the previous 32-
bit Windows versions but it certainly is a lot slower and resource
intensive. I don't believe that making more secure software has to be
(significantly) slower if good software design and programming techniques
are used.

I believe that Vista is just one more in the chain of OSs from Microsoft
that came into existence primarily because they needed something new to
satisfy the investment community. (WinXP with security enhancements would
be boring... yawn... and of course wouldn't force end users/OEMs/corporate
IT to upgrade to a new OS).

Lest I sound too cynical, I really don't hate Microsoft's OSs. I am not a
big fan of their business practices and how they affect which "features"
are included in the OS and how they choose to release/distribute/price
them.

Matt Pobursky
Maximum Performance Systems

2007\11\30@132345 by Bob Axtell

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Matt Pobursky wrote:
{Quote hidden}

I go even further, Matt. I am sick and tired of poorly-written,
easy-to-hack software, by whoever it
is, but MS is just about the worst on earth.

If  I could recover the wasted money and lost time fumbling around with
the many Windoze variants,
I could have acquired and paid for another wife.


--Bob A

2007\11\30@133656 by Dario Greggio

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Matt Pobursky wrote:

> I'm still using Win2K for all (7) of the workstations and servers in our
> office here. Office97 Pro was the last version of Office we bought and use.
> We are using it less and less and migrating towards OpenOffice.org. We
> don't use any Microsoft browsers (except where forced to), no Microsoft
> email programs or firewalls. We have had no serious security or virus
> issues. In fact, real-time antivirus is turned off on all the machines. It
> simply isn't needed.

Same, absolutely same situation in here!
We just have one XP notebook, which came with that 2 years ago, and is
used primarily for some "outdoor consulting".

I consider XP mainly for multimedia applications - in fact some Video
Card could not work on 2000 any longer (especially Pinnacle, which I
hate btw...)

{Quote hidden}

You're absolutely right and I agree with you.
Vista looks nice indeed, but it's so slow and "doing whatever except
what you clicked for, just like and even more than XP" , that I can't
bear it. I mean, if I need serious work!

Though I understand that Market Laws and capitalism are not dictated
(only?) by Microsoft, and that security/viruses have a problem for so
long, and that in the end setting up a Windows Machine is still easier
than a Linux one these days (Xiaofan may not agree :)


--
Ciao, Dario
--
ADPM Synthesis sas - Torino
--
http://www.adpm.tk

2007\11\30@173841 by Xiaofan Chen
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On Dec 1, 2007 2:36 AM, Dario Greggio <RemoveMEadpm.toEraseMEspamEraseMEinwind.it> wrote:
>
> Though I understand that Market Laws and capitalism are not dictated
> (only?) by Microsoft, and that security/viruses have a problem for so
> long, and that in the end setting up a Windows Machine is still easier
> than a Linux one these days (Xiaofan may not agree :)
>

Setting up a Linux machine is normally quite easy these days
(easier and faster than Windows XP) if you do not have some
unsupported hardware. Right out of the box, mainstream Linux distros
support more hardware and software than Windows XP SP2.

So depending on what you do, Linux can be easier than
Windows. But for my work, I will say it is not possible to
use Linux at work due to the fact that Windows XP is
the standard.

Xiaofan


'[OT] Linux for rescuing dumped computers?'
2007\12\03@060515 by John La Rooy
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On Nov 30, 2007 10:18 AM, Martin K <RemoveMEmartinspam_OUTspamKILLspamnnytech.net> wrote:

> I remember running Slackware on machines with as little as 16MB. I don't
> know if I ran X though. You should be able to run X on just about
> anything, with the right window manager I'd hazard to guess.
> -
> Martin


Remember that you were probably using 8 bit or maybe 15/16 bit colour back
then.
24 bit colour was a lot of work for those old pc's

John La Rooy

2007\12\03@114703 by Morgan Olsson

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Den 2007-11-30 19:36:53 skrev Dario Greggio <RemoveMEadpm.toTakeThisOuTspamspaminwind.it>:

> setting up a Windows Machine is still easier
> than a Linux one these days (Xiaofan may not agree

Me neither, and more and more people find it that way.

Just tried reinstalling Win2k in a Thinkpad laptop.
(first i started with XP it was abut the same problem as with 2k, but i realized half-way that we did not have that many licenses for WP, but one for 2k...)

The plain 2k OEM installs with very slow graphic driver, no wireless, etc.
Took a whole evening gathering info and downloading and reading about how to install drivers for video, wireless, usb, PC-card, power management, yada, yada...
To top it of the modem driver os no longer to be fojnd as th elink on IBM site (now lenovo) points ti th emanufacturter, that is nowadays boughy up...

Mandiva installed in a couple hours, with full quick graphic, much nicer than XP, even 3D effecxs, power save, hibernate, wireless...
Only thing to solve manually is the modem.

--
Morgan Olsson

2007\12\03@120453 by Herbert Graf

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On Mon, 2007-12-03 at 17:40 +0100, Morgan Olsson wrote:
> Den 2007-11-30 19:36:53 skrev Dario Greggio <EraseMEadpm.tospamspamspamBeGoneinwind.it>:
>
> > setting up a Windows Machine is still easier
> > than a Linux one these days (Xiaofan may not agree
>
> Me neither, and more and more people find it that way.
>
> Just tried reinstalling Win2k in a Thinkpad laptop.
> (first i started with XP it was abut the same problem as with 2k, but i realized half-way that we did not have that many licenses for WP, but one for 2k...)
>
> The plain 2k OEM installs with very slow graphic driver, no wireless, etc.
> Took a whole evening gathering info and downloading and reading about how to install drivers for video, wireless, usb, PC-card, power management, yada, yada...
> To top it of the modem driver os no longer to be fojnd as th elink on IBM site (now lenovo) points ti th emanufacturter, that is nowadays boughy up...

My biggest problem with Win installs isn't so much the time, it's the
required user interaction. It seems you can't go more then maybe 15
minutes before the install stops and waits for you to confirm something.

Aside from this, the "driver collecting" is a very annoying step. Very
few of the drivers I need are found in windows update, so first thing I
have to do after a windows install is collect all the drivers and
install them. Most drivers require a reboot, so just this step usually
results in 10 or 20 reboots. And of course some drivers need a certain
SP or other update first, so they have to wait.

After that, windows update, usually an SP first, a reboot, then high
priority updates, which usually have to be done multiple times since one
of the updates is "exclusive" (meaning you can only run that update), so
a bunch of reboots there. Then installing the "recommended" updates
(which usually doesn't have exclusive ones so that's only one reboot).

Then a few more driver updates since some of the drivers wouldn't
install unless you have a certain windows update patch applied...

All told, I wouldn't be surprised if it takes 20 reboots to get a
windows machine usable, every one of those reboots requiring user
intervention.

Contrast that to my latest install of ubuntu. The only step that took
lots of interaction was partitioning, and that's simply because I'm old
time linux and like my partitions a certain way (separate /boot
partition, no LVS just straight ext3, etc.).

Aside from that, once I fill out a few basic things like WEP key, user
account name/password, time zone and perhaps one or two other things it
just goes. After a while it asks to reboot, once rebooted the update
manager starts, asks me for my password, I tell it to go and it goes. A
while later it's done, reboot recommended, system restarts and there you
have it, a working system.

About the only additional thing is a "restricted driver" request. All in
all it probably takes less time then windows to install, but the major
difference is it's hands off, it doesn't ask me every step of the way
for some confirmation or tidbit of info, it just installs.

TTYL

2007\12\03@133714 by Dario Greggio

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Morgan Olsson wrote:

> Den 2007-11-30 19:36:53 skrev Dario Greggio <RemoveMEadpm.toKILLspamspaminwind.it>:
>
>>setting up a Windows Machine is still easier
>>than a Linux one these days (Xiaofan may not agree
>
> Me neither, and more and more people find it that way.

Of course I belive in what you experienced, though in *my* experience
OTOH Windows 2000 installs well enough.
We have to point out that notebooks are always some peculiar, so that
may make a difference.

I'd love to be able to install, use, and advice to "basic" customer
(i.e. Office, Internet, some accounting...) Linux.
At this time, almost neither of the 3 is true, and with a lot of effort
I can just have some people using Firefox or OpenOffice.

In here, and in my experience... of course!

--
Ciao, Dario
--
ADPM Synthesis sas - Torino
--
http://www.adpm.tk

2007\12\03@142835 by Dario Greggio

face picon face
Herbert Graf wrote:

> My biggest problem with Win installs isn't so much the time, it's the
> required user interaction. It seems you can't go more then maybe 15
> minutes before the install stops and waits for you to confirm something.

This is a point indeed! I agree! I hope Linux does not do this.

> Aside from this, the "driver collecting" is a very annoying step. Very
> few of the drivers I need are found in windows update, so first thing I
> have to do after a windows install is collect all the drivers and
> install them. [...]

I'd say that this is true, but *of course* me or the customer should
keep the CDs which came with Motherboard... :)
Apart from this, I usually find needed driver via Google and/or
manufacturer's site.

> After that, windows update, usually an SP first, a reboot, then high [...]

indeed...

> Then a few more driver updates since some of the drivers wouldn't
> install unless you have a certain windows update patch applied...

...more seldom, but yes....

> All told, I wouldn't be surprised if it takes 20 reboots to get a
> windows machine usable, every one of those reboots requiring user
> intervention.

...Well, last week: AMD 1700 (some 4yrs old), 256MB RAM, Windows 2000.
Some 30minutes formatting (this was speeded up in XP); some 30 minutes
installing; go downloading Updates (80MB IIRC) but just 2 reboots;
install drivers from CD (some 5 minutes, and just one update - I NEVER
trust the "reboot now" thing and usually the PC is kind with me :-)
One more maybe for antivirus.
6-7 reboot in total. some 2 full hours working hard :)

--
Ciao, Dario

2007\12\03@175806 by Apptech

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> ...Well, last week: AMD 1700 (some 4yrs old), 256MB RAM,
> Windows 2000.
> Some 30minutes formatting (this was speeded up in XP);
> some 30 minutes
> installing; go downloading Updates (80MB IIRC) but just 2
> reboots;
> install drivers from CD (some 5 minutes, and just one
> update - I NEVER
> trust the "reboot now" thing and usually the PC is kind
> with me :-)
> One more maybe for antivirus.
> 6-7 reboot in total. some 2 full hours working hard :)

While away in China for 2 weeks recently I reinstalled XP
home about (lost count for certain) 6 times over a number of
days in order to try to eliminate an especially pernicious
and crippling trojan from the system. I contracted the
trojan from a Chinese site while trying to locate drivers
for my client's PC. His had been (apparently) trashed by
logging into a wireless network in Seoul airport - a known
bug causes some files to be replaced so that subsequently
... .  He and the hotel IT man then managed to totally trash
the system to the wouldn't-boot stage. So, I got his going
but killed mine.

Trojan was logogogo.exe. Hard to find details and it seemed
to hide well outside the windows area proper and even
several complete new windows installs in new directories
failed to kill it. Ran OK for a while and then popped up
again. Tended to kill net access making redress hard. Also
attempted net access of its own after various periods of
time. Reformatting was not an option. Taught me things about
security level needed for foreign country hotel internet
operation.

6 installs takes a lot of user interventions alas. My body
also contracted a virus of its own so I was not feeling too
good at nights. So I put laptop on the bed by me and slept
on top of bed. Occasionally I'd wake up and check laptop for
next "user intervention" then go back to sleep. Not the
ideal way to sleep or to install Win-doze [tm] but it
finally worked OK :-). (Fortunately long experience/abuse of
my sleeping systems means that I now drop into REM sleep
almost instantly so a summation of small sleeps is almost as
effective as a long sleep, but not as satisfying).

At one stage I tried to buy a floppy diskette to allow me to
do a clean boot (make disk on clients PC was the theory) to
allow me to remove a file which was otherwise always locked
by the system. NOBODY knew what a floppy disk was despite
many pictures and much pantomime. Even if they had been able
to speak more than zero English I don't think it would have
helped. One lady did very well in offering me a device which
indeed looked VERY like a floppy diskette in shape and size
but which was a 100 MB "optical RAM" cartridge. The HP
laptop I had with me (bought in desperation in Vienna 4
years ago) has a floppy drive AND a serial port AND a
parallel port. These were somewhat unusual even then and
about all modern laptops have none of these.


           Russell

2007\12\03@182534 by Dario Greggio

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Apptech wrote:

> While away in China for 2 weeks recently I reinstalled XP
> home about (lost count for certain) 6 times over a number of
> days in order to try to eliminate an especially pernicious
> and crippling trojan from the system.

This is definitely another, important, thing.
I agree that Viruses are one the worst thing in Windows, causing loss of
time and data.


--
Ciao, Dario

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