Old Dell Inspiron 1501 - which ditro should I use?

I’ve got my father’s old laptop on front of me now. It has an AMD Turion 64 Mobile TK-53 CPU, 2 Gb of RAM, and a 112 Gb hard drive. Graphics are ATI Radeon XPress series. Any advice on a suitable Linux distro to prolong its active life would be welcome.


Based on Ubuntu, so has access to all the software in the Ubuntu repos, but uses the LXDE desktop so is much lighter on system resources.

Word of warning though … whenever someone says “which distro should I use” they normally get as many different distros as respondants :wink:

It’s always a good idea to try a few as LiveCD’s or LiveUSB’s (ie.without installing) and choose one that suits YOU.

Well I happened to have a laptop (different make) with similar components (AMD Turion 64 MT34 with 2gb RAM and ATI Raden XPress 200M graphics)
So far I had installed and running well:
Chakra (KDE) - Slow boot but running fast
LMDE (XFCE) - Running fast
LMDE (Cinnamon) - Running well
ArchBang (Openbox) - Running extremely fast
ArchBang (LXDE post install) - Running equally extremely fast (current)

So my advice stick with LXDE or XFCE Desktop enviroment (any distro whichever it is to your liking) and you will be OK
Stay clear of Ubuntu (Unity) it is a resource hog.


Word of warning though .. whenever someone says "which distro should I use" they normally get as many different distros as respondants ;)

And rightly so, we cannot allow for this “Peppermint” to be pushed as a lonely option… :wink:

Too right … try others…

Wait for it…

Then install Peppermint :slight_smile:
(Oh go on then … or any distro you like)


Word of warning though .. whenever someone says "which distro should I use" they normally get as many different distros as respondants ;)

As SeZo’s given you 5 to think about … ignore that comment … you’ll get MORE distros than respondents :wink:

how well do you know linux and what desktop or window manager do you like pure speed then openbox arch but it’s not for newbies .

thats the great thing linx such choice if you are new i’d go for

peppermint http://peppermintos.com/

linuxmint Home - Linux Mint

zorinos Zorin OS - Make your computer better.

or pclinuxos http://www.pclinuxos.com/

I tried out a few. Linuxmint won out - and I’m generally very pleased. Some issues (see other posts) but generally I’m finding Linux a good experience. Linux has transformed my home network, it was highly unreliable under Win7, it just works under Linux. Now if only the people who write HOWTOs could learn to write in English instead of uebergeek, I’d be a totally happy bunny!

Happy to hear you’re enjoying Mint, and thanks for letting us know how you’re getting on :slight_smile:

Sometimes it can be difficult to talk at all about computers without using what some would consider “geek jargon”, but talk to a mechanic and he won’t say “replace the rubber loop thingy on the roundish electrical looking thing under the left side of the big lump of metal (that may or may not also go round a fan) under the hood”, he’ll say “replace the fanbelt” with the assumption that if that’s gibberish to you, and you can’t be bothered to do a little terminology homework you probably shouldn’t be replacing it in the first place.

It’s one thing to “show” a trainee in a show-and-tell kind of way where he’ll pick up the jargon along the way … it’s another entirely to type up text instructions without using jargon, and expect it to be crystal clear, precise, and leave no room for user “interpretation” :wink:
(believe me, there’s nothing more frustrating than someone who “thinks” he understands where your instructions are going, so forges ahead only to cause more damage)

Technical terminology IS English … just not English that Joe Average understands, or wants to … I wouldn’t expect a brain surgeon to document his work so a layman could understand it, they’re generally not the target audience, but where they were he’d still have to use the technical terminology for brain regions and tools, or dumb it down so much it’s no longer informative and precise enough to actually be used as any kind of tutorial.

If you’re talking about the use of the command line in online tutorials, etc. … there are good reasons for that -

  1. it’s shorter than typing instructions for a GUI method for achieving the same result
  2. most commands tend to work across different Linux distributions … GUI instructions may not (different desktop’s etc)
  3. commands leave no room for “interpretation” by the person being instructed.
  4. they can be copy/pasted directly into a terminal

The command line in Linux is an extremely powerful tool … it would be a pity (and occasionally impossible) not to use it :slight_smile:

Good points well made. I appreciate that I’ve got some reading to do in order to gain the level of understanding that I need to have. And the help here has been a real assett.

That’s what we’re here for, my friend :slight_smile:

Nobody’s born understanding Window either … it’s all a learning process, but that’s half the fun :slight_smile:

I’m sold on Linux! I’ve been using Windows since 3.1 -it seems to become more complicated with every ‘development’. Linux, in contrast, is simpler to follow than it was when I tried Mandrake a long time ago.

that is one good thing about linux we all have our fav distro’s but we halp out anyone