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[#] Tue Dec 02 2014 20:04:23 EST from Sig @ Uncensored

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I have finally accepted that I am unlikely to need the Windows XP recovery partition on this 2008-era netbook, so I have wiped the drive for a fresh install of the latest Linux Mint.

[#] Tue Dec 02 2014 22:02:56 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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Linux "anything" is the absolute best thing to do with any laptop older than 5 years. You've given your laptop - literally - a new lease on life.

The only thing that will eventually do you in is a physical hard disk failure, or breaking the screen, or needing a new keyboard. The screen and keyboard are easy to handle for at-home use - just use an outboard screen and monitor. I do that in Auburn where I visit, and the laptop sits off to the side, "out of sight out of mind", so when I sit at the desk to use it, it's the same (to me) as if it were a desktop machine. Runs Win7 - but has a linux setup using VirtualBox - and I swear the linux install under the virtual machine is faster than Win7 running "native."

In many ways it's just because linux handles things ***much*** smarter than WinBlow$...

[#] Tue Dec 02 2014 22:19:41 EST from zooer @ Uncensored

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My 2005 laptop gets slow when it tries to do too much with Mint. I tried Puppy
Linux and it was decent but because I had trouble with libraries. I couldn't run the programs I wanted to run.
Dispite puppy help searches none of the suggestions worked. feh. So I will try Mint again but I need to find
what causes the slow downs. At first I thought it was Mate but I think it is when the system tries to do a
bunch of stuff. It becomes unuseable.

[#] Thu Dec 04 2014 18:59:08 EST from Sig @ Uncensored

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It was running Mint Debian Edition earlier, so it is not much of a transition. I had mucked some things up and finally got around to a fresh start. I used to dual boot to do Army things, but I have mostly given up on that with the laptop.

My XP install was very lean and very fast, owing to years of knowing what you can safely turn off or remove. It is remarkably secure if you don't need it to network with any other Windows devices. Mint is not so lean not fast, but much More pleasant to use.

[#] Fri Dec 05 2014 02:31:57 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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unless you pay the protection money for the AV, then no windows is fast anymore.

[#] Fri Dec 05 2014 05:00:18 EST from the_mgt @ Uncensored

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Use a distribution which does not come with a heavy windowmanager/desktop environment on an old laptop. Avoid Gnome and KDE, try one of those ulgy "box" window managers, XFCE, enlightenment or what else there is. Most of the KDE/Gnome programs will probably run fine, only things that rely on all the bling from those desktops might fail. Avoid their filemangers like a plague.

For real snappy feeling, find a distro with BFS (Brain Fuck Scheduler). Feels like cutting snow with a blowtorch.

Manjaro, Sabayon, Zenwalk and PCLinuxOS use it.

[#] Fri Dec 05 2014 13:49:09 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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It seems to me that the issue these days is not "making linux faster than Windows."

Linux has *always* been faster than Windows.
The problem is that contemporary linux development has led toward more and more "extras" that really do *nothing* to add to the efficacy and utiility of the *operating system* but just to the "flash" and, quite frankly, the bullshit that integrates with the (various different) window managers.

the_mgt has hit it right on the head. It's the "bells & whistles" that some developers seem to think are more important than anything else are *not* what makes linux superior to just about anything else in existence today.

*That* job is handled by the kernel and core applications.
And *that* job is, in my opinion, most likely as far along as is currently possible.

I'm sure you can nitpick what I've just said; and no doubt some will.
And I'm equally sure that in the not-so-distant future, there will be kernel developments (no doubt matched to CPU advances) that will make linux even better/faster.

[#] Sat Dec 06 2014 08:29:27 EST from Sig @ Uncensored

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Well, part of the "pleasant to use" part is "more visually appealing than XP." There are tradeoffs. I've been playing with various distros and window managers with varying degrees of success and enjoyment since 2000. This machine has been primarily Linux for close to four years now.

[#] Sat Dec 06 2014 20:31:16 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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Windows 98 was more "visually appealing" than XP.
The single most important factor for me is speed.

This, of course, assumes the platform to be stable.
But then, just about all linux distros are stable.
And if you strip out the fluff, they are also all fast.

It's the window managers that introduce most of the slugginess. And that really only manifests itself from the GUI (X) side. The CLI on every linux box I've ever used is fast. Very fast.

[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 03:42:42 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Thankfully the fluff *can* be stripped out, for most use cases.

[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 07:34:53 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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yea, and if you've ever used cygwin, you know that the tab-expension is realy slow over there... since stuff all nice to the os on linux weirdy fails on the wintendo and brings everything to a grinding hold.

[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 08:20:16 EST from the_mgt @ Uncensored

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I like some bling and bells&whistles on my linux machines alongside of the fast speeds. I always preferred enlightenment/e17 (and previously e16) with my machines, because they at least tried to look good while staying out of the way. I hate these openbox/fluxbox minimalist things. I also love to have automounting for usb disks and some comfort. What I do not need is another audio system or a new init version or a reinvention of handling of pluggable devices and X autoconfiguration.

But part of the sluggishness on normal desktops is due to the kernel itself, or rather the default scheduler. Con Kolivas build his brainfuck scheduler because of this. On a normal 1-2 core desktop computer, the schedulers in the kernel performed like a sloth. So he wrote his own and it does really make sense on a desktop, were realtime interaction and quick responses to user interaction is paramount. He reported that to the kernel scheduler guys and they said "can't reproduce on my octacore 16gb ram machine."

[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 09:54:00 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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A good example of "fast by stripping out stuff" is what I'm going to do with a dedicated box - serve the TNC for packet radio, and the Citadel BBS.

The box will do *nothing* else; it will even "hand off" DNS to the main linux box.

It will be blazingly fast; hell, it was blazingly fast the last time I tried this back in the 1990s - so it can only be better/faster today than it was "back in the day."


[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 21:05:09 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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People *are* re-learning the art of efficiency in system deployment. We have the Raspberry Pi to thank for that.

[#] Sun Dec 07 2014 22:33:40 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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Dec 7 2014 6:05pm from IGnatius T Foobar @uncnsrd (Uncensored)
People *are* re-learning the art of efficiency in system deployment.

We have the Raspberry Pi to thank for that.

Yeah - sort of like it used to be when programming for pre-winBlows DOS...

"Watch that executable - can't exceed 128K!"

[#] Mon Dec 08 2014 00:42:35 EST from ax25 @ Uncensored

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the_mgmt, I agree E17 is fun.  IG, yes, the cheap Rpi does make you think of the mantra: Do one thing, and do it well :-)

[#] Mon Dec 08 2014 09:07:15 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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"Watch that executable - can't exceed 128K!"

Back when I first started developing Citadel on a unix platform I was running an early version of Xenix, and the compiler had a 64K code + 64K data limitation.
Little did I know that I was facing a Microsoft stupidism, even then, even on a "real" operating system.

Microport ended up being better. Who knew.

[#] Mon Dec 08 2014 13:19:22 EST from vince-q @ Cascade Lodge BBS

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On the PC/MSDOS platform I used the Borland C compiler.

All things considered it was a good development system, at least for its day. I have *no* idea if they (Borland) even still exist.

The limitations were imposed by DOS (3.x at the time) - 128K for the executable after compiling. As far as I can remember (it *has* been almost thirty years!) the compiler handled all data issues internally while compiling.

I had the machine "populated" with 640K of RAM. Remember? A memory card. 8 sockets by 16 sockets if memory serves, and you had to place a chip in each socket. I think. It's been forever-ago... ;)

This was a machine running an intel 80286 CPU with a "math coprocessor" chip. IBM PC/AT architecture (it was a clone).

They just don't DO that any more! (good thing)

[#] Wed Dec 10 2014 18:15:28 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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SO HAPPY to see that TigerDirect has a small selection of laptops available with Linux on them!

I've never used "Linpus" (sounds like something that would come out of an infected penguin) but I can always reload it with something else. Not one dollar of my hard-earned money will be sent to the Great Satan of Redmond!

Ideally I'd love to support a company like System76 but they just don't have anything in the low-end range, and this is for a family member who will abuse it.

[#] Wed Dec 10 2014 18:18:41 EST from LoanShark @ Uncensored

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Linux is the reason my younger brother (who barely makes enough money to make ends meet) is still actually able to *afford* a computer (he's apparently currently running a 1.5GB RAM box, instead of the 8GB monstrosity you need to run Winbloze these days.)

Bill Gates: stealing money from the hard-working since 1972

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