Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

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Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

Postby GoldFish on Thu Jan 24, 2013 11:55 am

I decided to leave windows behind. I'm trying to figure out what distro my processor can support. I have a HP pavilion a847c. I'm going to boot with Linux only and just forget about windows. My computer has: Pentium 4 w/HT 3.2GHz 1MB L2 cache, 250 GB HardDrive, and 2 GB ram. I can upgrade to 4 GB ram if needed. I was going to install Mint 14 Xfce Nadia, but I'm pretty sure that my processor will not handle that. So if anyone knows for sure what is the best distro for this computer, that info would be greatly appreciated or any other suggestions for that matter.
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Re: Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

Postby sagirfahmid3 on Thu Jan 24, 2013 12:04 pm

Mint Xfce is fine. Your pc can handle it.

(If I were you though, I would install Debian Wheezy base, then install Xfce on top. Much more efficient than an Ubuntu based distro.
With Debian, I'm getting 85MB idle RAM usage on my old Dell Optiplex GX260, 2.8GHz Pentium 4, 512MB RAM; for Ubuntu/Mint, it's somewhere around 100MB idle).
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Re: Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

Postby GoldFish on Thu Jan 24, 2013 12:21 pm

Thanks for the quick reply. Because of being a newbie, I think I used the wrong terms or was not specific enough. When I was reading through the Mint 14 Xfce "Nadia" release notes it says "The 32-bit ISOs of Linux Mint 14 use a PAE kernel. If your processor is not compatible with PAE please use Linux Mint 13 Maya LTS instead. Linux Mint 13 is supported until 2017."

I'm pretty sure that I found that my processor does NOT support that kernel. So, I guess I'm looking to make sure the Mint 13 will be OK for my processor.

Maybe you have already answered this, but because i'm new I just don't understand, if so sorry. I just don't want to waste time downloading files to then find out that a certain version will not work, again. And of course start the install and run into problems because of older hardware.

Maybe this is not the best way to go about this, but I was thinking of installing the newest version I can, to try and stay ahead of having to update in the near future, but maybe that does not matter once you get it installed.
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Re: Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

Postby homerscousin on Thu Jan 24, 2013 5:28 pm

I'm not sure about the PAE bit, but my old computer, retired last July, was a Pentium D, Intel's first dual core. I think it was basicly 2 P4s on the same die. I had only 1 Gb ram and a Geforce gt220 graphics card. This is the rig I first started running Linux on. I tried 3 different distros-Mint 13 cinnamon, Mageia 2, and Ultimate Edition 3.4 that also had compiz. They all worked and with the default Gallium graphics driver, not the better Nvidia driver. I don't know what you have for graphics, but if it is comparable to a gt220, I don't think you would have problems running any desktop. I knew my old computer was old and not very fast. I just didn't care. I wanted my desktop to look pleasing. What I tried did work reasonably with only 1Gb ram and a fairly low end graphics card.

I wouldn't add more ram. I'd stuff those few dollars into the piggy bank towards all new stuff later.

Also, I'm pretty sure the P4 supports PAE ( physical address extension ). I just don't remember, but I think the whole PAE thing has to do with 32 bit CPU's and the 4Gb ram limitation.
i5 3570k, ASRock z77 Extreme 4, 8 Gb Ripjaws 1600, Antec 430w psu, HVR 1600 tv tuner, custom case- marble top, oak face. Carver & DCM Time Window sound system. Mint 14 KDE.
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Re: Best Distro for Pentium 4 Processor

Postby bb333 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:50 am

http://serverfault.com/questions/85980/ ... upport-pae

You are covered. :)

Look for any distro with XFCE, LXDE, fluxbox, icewm, or etc (listed in descending features). You can try out Lubuntu (LXDE). Mint XFCE may work. Try it out with a livecd.
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