Installation problem with K6

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Installation problem with K6

Postby drrdf on Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:15 am

Hi, I am new to Linux MInt. I have been trying to install MInt v 4.0 on an older PC. This PC works perfectly with MS ME. I also have been able to install Linux Puppy and Zenwalk, but there were problems with them which made me look for another distro for this PC. The hardware is K6 AMD/2/500Mhz, 256 RAM, Nvidia 32 Mb G Force MX graphics card, 30 Gb hard drive Linux Mint only (no other OS).

I have checked the iso downloaded Mint CD on another PC (more recent) and that installs perfectly and everything works, so I know the CD is OK. When I run up Linux Mint as a live CD on the older PC there are sporadic problems and sometimes it halts without completing. This is never at the same point. Once I have got the live version to run and then I attempt to install every time it halts in the installation at the dialog box which states "Installing system" and it gets only to "15%". The system then hangs.

Can anyone please inform me what the problem might be? Mint seems to be a very good distro and I would like to get it installed on this PC. I am using v 4.0 because of the age of this PC and the fact that later kernels seem not compatible with the cpu.
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby lagagnon on Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:14 pm

drrdf wrote:...The hardware is K6 AMD/2/500Mhz, 256 RAM,....When I run up Linux Mint as a live CD on the older PC there are sporadic problems and sometimes it halts without completing.


You do not have enough RAM. You need 512MB to run the Live CD, including the installer and you need 512MB minimum to run Mint 7 with a KDE or Gnome desktop (that information is available on the Mint website BTW). With just 256MB you were right to try to find a lighterweight distro such as Puppy, Vector, Zen, AntiX.

You could try our Fluxbox CE version if you want, or go out and buy yourself some more RAM. However, with a K6 I would stick to a lighterweight distro. Any of the above I mentioned....
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby exploder on Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:15 pm

Vector works well on older hardware and the last time I tried it there was not problems with mainboards with an old BIOS.
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby drrdf on Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:05 am

Thanks guys for your response. That is clearly what the problem is then. I will give Vector a try on this PC. Mint runs well on my other PCs, but they have 1 Gb RAM and newer cpus etc. Did any earlier version of Mint need less RAM or has it always needed the same? lagagnon you mention that Mint 7 needs 512 Mb minimum, but is it possible that earlier versions needed less? Thanks again.
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby lagagnon on Wed Sep 09, 2009 11:40 am

drrdf wrote:lagagnon you mention that Mint 7 needs 512 Mb minimum, but is it possible that earlier versions needed less? Thanks again.


I doubt it, any desktop that runs either KDE or Gnome really does need 512MB to be workable, even with older versions of those desktops. Did you know you can purchase 1-2GB sticks of laptops RAM these days for like $30-$40 ??? It has never been cheaper....
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby drrdf on Thu Sep 10, 2009 7:15 am

Hi lagagnon,

I tried Antix as you suggested, but you should be aware that being based on Mepis it has a kernel which requires cmov; a K6 processor does not have this of course! Zen has now gone out of existence evidently. Has it been replaced by Zenwalk?

I am in the UK and older RAM as required here has shot up in price because it is not really available anymore here. Typically new 256 Mb is now costing as much as £64 per piece (about $102). The whole idea of resurrecting an older PC is to do so without much expenditure. If one is going to spend a significant amount then you can buy newer components to construct a much better PC! DDRII is very cheap now. This older PC is a desktop not a laptop, so you cannot use laptop RAM. It uses the old 168 pin PC 100 type.

I have just looked on e-bay and I may be able to get some used RAM at a low price. Do you think if I can increase it to 512 or even 1 Gb Mint 4.0 would run on this PC even if a bit slow?
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby pcdoctor on Tue Sep 15, 2009 4:18 am

For a lightweight pc I'd rather use LM Xfce but since it requires 512 I always try installing Xubuntu.
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Re: Installation problem with K6

Postby drrdf on Wed Sep 23, 2009 3:57 pm

Hi guys,

I thought I had better report back with my experiences. The older PC I was trying to find a suitable Linux OS for is now working well with 256 Mb of RAM. I tried Puppy 4.12, Teen Puppy 2008, LM xfce, Antix, Zenwalk, LM Fluxbox, Vector, SAM and a number of other likely distros on this older PC. None of these would work properly with this older PC. Particularly usb would not work properly with anything and avis and videos would not play properly. Then I found that there was a new release of Puppy (v 4.3). This worked out of the box with this older PC. It plays avis and videos and usb works properly. The new Puppy is definitely much improved, and is the answer for older PCs.

I am however running MInt 7 on a more modern PC and it is definitely fabulous. Everything works out of the box. It is one of the two best Linux distros now available without doubt. Everything works so well and is ergonomically so well thought out. It definitely makes XP look dated and inefficient.

Thanks guys for your help.
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