Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

All Gurus once were Newbies
Forum rules
There are no such things as "stupid" questions. However if you think your question is a bit stupid, then this is the right place for you to post it. Please stick to easy to-the-point questions that you feel people can answer fast. For long and complicated questions prefer the other forums within the support section.
Before you post please read how to get help
User avatar
jeffk969
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:18 am
Location: NY

Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by jeffk969 »

Hello,
I have a Dell Latitude D630 laptop. Yes old, but free. I have tried using XFCE. Had the no wifi issue, but fixed that. Then had the DRM_Helper errors, very long boot times, shut down, etc..

So I figured to learn from others experiences and ask, which edition of Linux Mint is best for older laptops? And should I use 32 or 64 bit?
My Dell is Dual-Core. Previously ran Vista 64 bit.

Would LMDE run on it? Cinnamon?

Thanks for your opinions...
Jeff
Dell Inspiron 3847 Dual Boot - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 / Linux Mint Cinnamon 20.0
Dell Latitude E5530 - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 & Gateway DX4200 - Linux Mint XFCE 20.0
Linux User since Oct 2017 - XFCE is my preferred preference.
User avatar
kc1di
Level 16
Level 16
Posts: 6607
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:44 pm
Location: Maine USA

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by kc1di »

Hi Jeff how much ram does it have. XFCE should work but mate may be ok. Cinnamon would be a bit much for older machine.
and if it's 64 bit processor that's what I'd go with.
Easy tips : https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/ Pjotr's Great Linux projects page.
Linux Mint Installation Guide: http://linuxmint-installation-guide.rea ... en/latest/
Registered Linux User #462608
Neil Edmond
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1183
Joined: Thu Dec 26, 2013 10:19 am
Location: N.E. AR USA

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by Neil Edmond »

Like kc1di, my first choice would be XFCE. That is what I use on most of my laptops from that era. I have Mate on my desktop that is just about as old as well.

If might be that 18.3 XFCE would be better for you than 19.1 XFCE, but that is not a hard and fast rule. It's just that the farther we go forward the more support for the oldest hardware will be dropped.
sleeper12
Level 14
Level 14
Posts: 5269
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 3:22 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by sleeper12 »

You should probably stay away from Cinnamon. I have Mint 18 Mate, 32 bit running pretty well on a Dell Latitude D610. If your laptop is 64 bit, you can go with 32 or 64. I think Mint 17 is the oldest still supported, so you might not want to go older than that. Of course, there are other distros that may be better on older pc's: Puppy Linux, MX Linux, Linux Lite, to name just a few.
User avatar
jeffk969
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:18 am
Location: NY

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by jeffk969 »

Thanks for your replies. It has 1 GB ram. I also swapped out the old hard drive with a new 120 GB SSD.

I had XFCE 64 bit on it. Tried Linux Lite, but didn't like that as much Mint XFCE. Currently have Zorin Lite which looks nice and runs well. But also has the forever boot times. Though had no issues with wifi. I may just put XFCE 32 on it and give it a go... I didn't try Cinnamon, thought it'd be too much. Read a post somewhere, someone said they had cinnamon 18.3 32 bit and it ran well. So I asked. LMDE, I never tried so was curious on that too.

I mainly use for work, give presentations using a slide show which I plug in to a cable to display on big 80 something inch tv. Again, thanks for the replies and I will take your advice and update...
Dell Inspiron 3847 Dual Boot - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 / Linux Mint Cinnamon 20.0
Dell Latitude E5530 - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 & Gateway DX4200 - Linux Mint XFCE 20.0
Linux User since Oct 2017 - XFCE is my preferred preference.
frosh
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2018 12:56 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by frosh »

Hey,

I'm running Linux MInt XFCE on a 10-year-old Sony Vaio and it's lightning fast, I couldn't be happier. If you're willing to invest a hundred bucks in a SSD and additional RAM (if that's a possibility for your laptop model), that would really help with boot times and performance as well. I've also tried out MInt XFCE on a really old Dell Latitude D610 and it was okay, but obviously much slower in comparison, especially booting times, updates and web browsing. I've Peppermint installed on it now, which is a bit snappier, so you might want to check that out as well.
User avatar
zcot
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1391
Joined: Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:08 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by zcot »

You could probably grab another 1GB stick or a couple 2GB sticks for $10 or something. That's a big deal, you'll surpass the 1GB pretty easily and then you're into swapping so it's all downhill at that point. With the SSD and at least 2GB it probably does nicely on Xfce.
User avatar
kc1di
Level 16
Level 16
Posts: 6607
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:44 pm
Location: Maine USA

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by kc1di »

jeffk969 wrote:
Sat Dec 15, 2018 5:14 pm
Thanks for your replies. It has 1 GB ram. I also swapped out the old hard drive with a new 120 GB SSD.
That's not much ram for modern DE even XFCE would do better with at least 2 GB I would try for 3 or 4 if the machine will allow it.
Easy tips : https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/ Pjotr's Great Linux projects page.
Linux Mint Installation Guide: http://linuxmint-installation-guide.rea ... en/latest/
Registered Linux User #462608
User avatar
Joe2Shoe
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 553
Joined: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:12 pm
Location: Ozone

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by Joe2Shoe »

I am using a Dell Latitude D620 right now. I upgraded the CPU from a Core Duo 1.8GHz to a Core2Duo 2.33GHZ ($17.00 ebay), updated the ram from DDR2-800 2GB to 4GB $20.00 ebay), updated the HDD from 320GB 5400rpm to HGST 1TB 7200rpm ($50.00 neweg), and running LM 19 Mate 64-bit kernel 4.15.0.42; nice & smooth.
"Tolerance is the refuge of men without conviction."
"Common sense is not so common" - Voltaire
sleeper12
Level 14
Level 14
Posts: 5269
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 3:22 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by sleeper12 »

Yeah, definitely try to get some more ram in there if you can. Forget LMDE 3, it's Cinnamon only.
Dot_mdb
Level 2
Level 2
Posts: 78
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2018 9:16 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by Dot_mdb »

I have a Dell e1505, a similar model to yours, that I am pretty sure came with 32 bit XP. When I got it the 1GB of memory was bad so I bought 2GB of used memory on eBay. I installed Mint Xfce 32 bit and I am very happy with the performance. I've had around 15 tabs open in a browser as well as other programs running and was only starting to swap. I've actually been pretty impressed with the performance considering the age of the machine and the hardware specs.

Bill
User avatar
vansloneker
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 585
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:10 am

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by vansloneker »

jeffk969 wrote:
Sat Dec 15, 2018 5:14 pm
Thanks for your replies. It has 1 GB ram. I also swapped out the old hard drive with a new 120 GB SSD.

I had XFCE 64 bit on it. Tried Linux Lite, but didn't like that as much Mint XFCE. Currently have Zorin Lite which looks nice and runs well. But also has the forever boot times. Though had no issues with wifi. I may just put XFCE 32 on it and give it a go... I didn't try Cinnamon, thought it'd be too much. Read a post somewhere, someone said they had cinnamon 18.3 32 bit and it ran well. So I asked. LMDE, I never tried so was curious on that too.

I mainly use for work, give presentations using a slide show which I plug in to a cable to display on big 80 something inch tv. Again, thanks for the replies and I will take your advice and update...
Good thing you upgraded the disk for a SSD. If it can run 64bit, do run 64bit, as not all 64bit applications are also available in 32bit. I would also choose Mint 18.3 XFCE 64bit for it.
1GB RAM really is that bare minimum to run Linux Mint. You should try to upgrade to 2 or 4GB. 2GB/slot and 4GB total seem to be the maximum for that laptop. Memory change seem to be a bit of an issue as one slot is under the keyboard. But there are several video's about that on youtube and there is the Dell manual.
Unless stated otherwise Mint 18.3-64 XFCE
BeBop
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:16 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by BeBop »

I have been putting Mint into a number of old Dell latitudes including D620, D630. D500-series, D800 series, as well as the E5400, E5500, E6400 series ones. The one I'm using right now is E4300. I've found that the SSD makes a huge difference, going up to 2 GB RAM definitely speeds it up, a bit more speed with 4 GM but not as big a jump as with the first 2 GB. I'm running LM 18.3 Cinnamon on this one with 4 GB RAM, 128 GB SSD and it runs super fast. On others, I've opted for 18.1 Xfce instead of 18.3 or 19 because the older kernel seems to support it better. Reset your swappiness to 10 (on a hard drive, or to 1 if you have changed over to SSD) and you should have a quicker machine.
User avatar
jeffk969
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:18 am
Location: NY

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by jeffk969 »

Just put in 2GB of ram... How do you change the swappiness to 1...? I planned on installing XFCE 19, 32 bit.
Dell Inspiron 3847 Dual Boot - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 / Linux Mint Cinnamon 20.0
Dell Latitude E5530 - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 & Gateway DX4200 - Linux Mint XFCE 20.0
Linux User since Oct 2017 - XFCE is my preferred preference.
Neil Edmond
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1183
Joined: Thu Dec 26, 2013 10:19 am
Location: N.E. AR USA

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by Neil Edmond »

User avatar
Pierre
Level 20
Level 20
Posts: 11268
Joined: Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:33 am
Location: Perth, AU.

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by Pierre »

Yet another suggestion, for those older machines,
- is to use MX-Linux
https://mxlinux.org/
as this Linux System is also designed for those older machines.
Image
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] - when your problem is solved!
and DO LOOK at those Unanswered Topics - - you may be able to answer some!.
User avatar
jeffk969
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:18 am
Location: NY

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by jeffk969 »

Hello All,
I installed Mint XFCE 19, 64Bit... Also added 2GB Ram, now have total of 3GB. Have yet to address the swapiness.

Had the no wifi. I believe I had to install the driver first in order for this fix to work, but I'm not 100% positive...

https://askubuntu.com/questions/536778/ ... never-used

Had the drm helper errors, extremely long boot time, 6, 7 minutes. Long shutdown times. Used this link to fix. Now 37 second boot time.
(This link corrected, sorry about that)

https://askubuntu.com/questions/1046789 ... e-2-x-erro

Now it runs quick, better than ever. Never changing to another OS. Ok, I upgraded to 19.1. So I lied, lol. Completely happy with performance. Satisfied 110%.
Last edited by jeffk969 on Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Dell Inspiron 3847 Dual Boot - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 / Linux Mint Cinnamon 20.0
Dell Latitude E5530 - Zorin Ultimate Lite 15.3 & Gateway DX4200 - Linux Mint XFCE 20.0
Linux User since Oct 2017 - XFCE is my preferred preference.
User avatar
kevin987
Level 4
Level 4
Posts: 346
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:35 pm

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by kevin987 »

If you're running a dual-core 1.8 Ghz with 3 Gig Ram then Cinnamon might be a stretch depending on what you're doing. It would probably be ok if you didn't open too many tabs when web browsing.

My processor is the same speed but I have 4 Gigs of Ram and Cinnamon runs fine.

You can always have a partition set up to try MATE and Cinnamon.
Linux Mint 19.1 (Cinnamon)
LMDE 3 (Cinnamon)
GeckoLinux 150 (Cinnamon)
User avatar
vansloneker
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 585
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:10 am

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by vansloneker »

jeffk969 if it runs fast, works for you and you're satisfied that all that's it about. Enjoy!
Unless stated otherwise Mint 18.3-64 XFCE
User avatar
kc1di
Level 16
Level 16
Posts: 6607
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:44 pm
Location: Maine USA

Re: Best Mint Edition for older laptops..?

Post by kc1di »

jeffk969 wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:50 pm

Now it runs quick, better than ever. Never changing to another OS. Ok, I upgraded to 19.1. So I lied, lol. Completely happy with performance. Satisfied 110%.
Glad it's working for you, Enjoy :)
Easy tips : https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/ Pjotr's Great Linux projects page.
Linux Mint Installation Guide: http://linuxmint-installation-guide.rea ... en/latest/
Registered Linux User #462608
Post Reply

Return to “Newbie Questions”