Author Topic: What linux distribution would you recommend me?  (Read 5893 times)
Mandolin Girl
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #15 on: October 30, 2020, 11:17:22 AM » Author: Mandolin Girl
That's good to know. :)
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Binarix128
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #16 on: October 30, 2020, 11:53:06 AM » Author: Binarix128
Well, now testing it, the computer is really struggling to work, the CPU is always at 100% use. It might improve if I swap it to a 4gb ram. It's extremely slow because it is an infamous netbook, those low hardware things that didn't do much.
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #17 on: October 30, 2020, 03:02:02 PM » Author: Ash
Virtually anything sold in the last 10 years is 64 bit. There are few Atoms that aren't, you might happen to get one of them but you might also get a 64 one. Check the exact model of your processor in the BIOS or using "cat /proc/cpuinfo" command in Linux terminal

Why your system might be slow and stuck at 100% CPU :

1. You might have disk indexing on that takes up all resources. If you use Plasma, go to System Settings - look there for Indexing and disable it completely. (I can't provide a screenshot since i removed it from my system completely, including the settings screens)

2. Your desktop might be trying to use OpenGL graphics on a video card with incomplete OpenGL support. On my experience this could happen with some Intel cards from the ~Core 2 Duo era. I don't know if this is your case, but this can be fixed by editing a file. (You can try it anyway, at most it won't do anything)

3. It is possible that Fedora just like Ubuntu is simply not the light system you are looking for, due to too much unneeded stuff set to run in the background

There gotta be nothing that uses more than a few % CPU and absolutely nothing that uses 2GB RAM, when you are looking at an empty desktop...

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Binarix128
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #18 on: October 30, 2020, 05:22:56 PM » Author: Binarix128
The computer is a Samsung PN-N102S. The interesting thing is that the cpu remains at 25% when doing nothing and not looking at the system monitor, but it is still laggy. When starting up it pops a mensagge saying that the graphis are not being accelerated by hardware, and it can cause cpu going slow.





I'm new at linux, so I don't know how to make the deep configurations, and I fear that the drivers for that pc are not aviable for linux.
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Ash
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #19 on: October 30, 2020, 07:36:53 PM » Author: Ash
Your CPU is 64 bit. Also, you have Hyper Threading, which improves performance even in single core processors

Your graphics are Intel GMA, they normally work well in Linux. The older ones do have incomplete OpenGL and can have performance problems if the desktop tries to use it. In Qt based desktops there is way how to set the desktop to use software rendering, which avoids the problem. Your desktop however looks like Cinnamon, in which i dont know how the setting is done

Even without video acceleration at all, if the display is standing and have nothing to change, it shouldn't use much CPU. (However, in extreme cases just the drawing of the graph in the system monitor can take some noticable CPU load). So im not sure if the video acceleration really is your problem. Maybe you just have too much stuff running in the background that slows everything down, and that depends on the distribution you use (untill you are advanced enough to control what is running)

Most hardware is supported in Linux using the built in drivers, and don't require installation of drivers from outside (from the computer manufacturer etc)





I think it is important to not fear from going "deep" into your Linux system. It is meant to let you go there, and all the better for you, and sometimes required to get something to work.... We are here to help you as much as you will need. Also, check out the forums of the Linux system you use



Open task manager and see if something takes much CPU

The desktop task manager (and how to open it) varies with each desktop. However, the terminal tools are more or less the same in most Linux systems, and it is good to be familiar with them

The task manager for the terminal is called top. To run it, enter "top" in the terminal. To close top, enter "q"



You can also use the terminal in different ways :

 - Using the terminal in a window from the desktop. like you do in your screenshot

 - Using the virtual consoles :

If you enter Ctrl+LeftAlt+F... (in most systems between F1...F6) you switch to a virtual console - a terminal which is "outside" of the desktop. (In the consoles you can switch with just LeftAlt+F...., the Ctrl is only required when switching out of the desktop)

This does not log you out of the desktop, but just switches your screen (and keyboard and mouse) to the console - As if you used a KVM switch. The desktop and everything that's in it keeps running in the background

The desktop itself in most Linux systems is in console 1 or 7 (varies with the distribution). So enter LeftAlt+F1 or LeftAlt+F7 to go back to the desktop. (Or just go through all consoles and see what's in there)

You can login in the virtual console and use the terminal there like any terminal. Enter "exit" to log out

If you open top in there, you can see what your system load is when the desktop is running, but not using the video card. So this way you can see if the load is still high (due to background processes that are not related to video) or if it's high only when you are displaying the desktop



The display system used by Linux is X11, and the software that runs it is called Xorg. You can check Xorg's log to see if it had any errors, or in general how it started and with what settings. In most Linux systems, the log file is stored in /var/log/Xorg.0.log . Use file manager to go to there and open the file

Sometimes there will be errors in the log but everything will still work correctly. For example, if Xorg tries to load a driver for the video card and fails, then tries to load another driver and it works



In Linux the file system (tree of folders) does not start from a drive letter, but just from the main "root folder" (the upper most folder, / ), which is one for the entire system. Different disks and partitions are accessed by connecting them to points in the tree first (this is called mount) and then entering into them like into folders, not through drive letters like in Windows

So when you see a file path like /var/log/Xorg.0.log , this means that you start from / , and then go to the folders like the path shows. (To get to / , enter "/" in the address of the file manager, or just go "folder up" untill there is no more "up")

Note : The "root folder" is the folder / , the most upper folder in the tree. Linux systems also have a locked folder /root. Despite its name, /root is not the "root folder", but just the personal folder of the user root (Administrator). When we say "root folder", we mean / , not /root .

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Binarix128
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #20 on: October 30, 2020, 11:14:44 PM » Author: Binarix128
Should I keep the 32 bit linux on my 64 bit PC or I should install a 64 bit one?

The interesting thing is that I had an older PC from 2007 with similar processing capacity, but with 1GB of ram, and it was WAY smoother than the pc I got.

I'm not the person that digs deep into an operating system, as I have almost no knowledge in coding, so I just don't know how to disable things that are draining the CPU. Most of the CPU is used by the system itself, and it's laggy and difficult to use most of the time even doing nothing, the cursor is refreshed at the monitor frequency but the elements the best they can do is 5-10 fps, and the videos 2-5 fps with luck.

I'm using linux mint cinnamon desktop 32 bit, but configurations may not vary much in relatively new versions of distros, so you can help me with configuration tricks for make it run smoother.

I don't want to install the original Windows 7 Starter that was meant for it, because I don't have a product key or a license, and I don't want to bring backdoors into the computer by cracking windows or the very own backdoors that all windows versions comes with it, with those Windows backdoors the very Microsoft itself can peek into your data. Also, windows 7 starter is a well known limited and ineffective system.
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Ash
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #21 on: October 31, 2020, 05:44:32 AM » Author: Ash
The 32 vs 64 doesn't matter that much in your case. If you are going to replace the system, choose by other things

I am running many PCs from the era of ~2002..2009 (Pentium 4's ... Core 2 Duo's) and they work great. The slowness you write about can be reason of way too low RAM (too low is <256MB for desktops like LxQt and <1GB for Plasma, so not your case with 2GB), problems with video, or unneeded background processes (which i sorta would expect in systems like Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and most systems that are "user friendly")

To see if there is anything really bad going on with the video (you are running without drivers, etc ...) check the log in /var/log/Xorg.0.log. (Just go to there with file manager and open the file)



The background processes can be something configured quite deep in the system

In your case you can try the following :

 - Go through the settings and disable file indexing (can be called something like file search / semantic desktop / etc). I don't know whether there is such thing in Cinnamon and where it is

 - Open top (as i showed above), in the desktop and in the virtual console, and try to see if anything specific is taking lots of CPU

 - Change the desktop to something more lightweight. Mate desktop is more lightweight than Cinnamon you are using now. You can install it with the package manager (it can be called by some other name like softwre center, etc), then reboot, and in the login screen choose what desktop you want to use



The means of configuration are one of the things that do vary significantly between distributions. (All in their newest versions)

In my systems i dont mess with disabling unneeded stuff that came installed, but choose in the first place a distribution that does not install it by default. However, those distributions tend to be the ones that require more messing with in general. I still think this is the better way around, and invite you to try a distribution of this type. While they do require work with the terminal and such, it is fairly straightforward and not like coding anything
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Binarix128
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #22 on: October 31, 2020, 12:29:41 PM » Author: Binarix128
I'll try to install the drivers for see if the CPU usage decreases, and also changing the desktop to a lighter one but user friendly.

I wonder if I can install linux mint cinnamon in an old android tablet from 2014, and then connect an usb to hdmi converter for converter the tablet into a portable media player and video/audio editing.

Should I keep the Android or install linux for that purpose?
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #23 on: October 31, 2020, 07:46:37 PM » Author: Ash
I'll try to install the drivers for see if the CPU usage decreases

Don't :

1.
Right now we don't know if this is related to the problem at all. Check what the problem can be to focus down the possible solutions - trying things "blindly" generally doesn't work well

2.
In Linux the way to install things to the system is using the built in package manager (can be called "software center", "app store", or any other similar names). The package manager takes care of proper installation, and also of compatibility and system requirements checking, updates if needed, and uninstall if needed later. There are few and rare cases when you have to break this rule, and video drivers are generally not one of them

When you bypass the package manager by installing things "from the side" (not through the manager), you don't get its protections and you could run into compatibility problems, software that breaks something else in the system, software that cannot be uninstalled cleanly, and other problems

In 99% of the times, in Linux you should not "download from the manufacturer's website" like you do for Windows



Linux desktops are generally easy to use. (Also, this is not related to how "easy" the rest of the system is. For example. even linux systems that are "hardcore" to install or manage, can have the same desktops as Linux Mint. The system administrator gets to do all the "work", but other users of the system can still use it from the desktop only and dont have to "touch" the rest of the system)

Lightweight desktops you can try under Linux Mint include Mate, LXDE, and XFCE. Maybe there is also LxQt option. (Of all of them i am familiar only with Gnome 2 which is what later became Mate, and with LXDE)

However, my experience is that the distribution itself (which means internal things it comes installed with that may take resources), matter more than the desktop. As matter of fact, i am running Plasma (which is considered one of the 2 most resource consuming desktops in Linux) on PCs that are older and less powerful than your netbook, but using a distribution that is very clean from uneeded stuff



Many "limited" devices don't have option of changing the system they run, or may need some messing with to do that

For a media player i think the existing old Android might be good enough, unless you have video in some new codecs that didnt exist back then

For editing of video i think a full and fairly powerful computer is required, i would not expect to edit video with anything like a tablet

For editing of audio it might be just about sufficient, but i wouldn't bet either....

One thing you might be able to do is, use the tablet to connect by remote desktop connection to a PC that runs the "real" things, and so only have the tablet as a remote display/console
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #24 on: October 31, 2020, 09:05:51 PM » Author: Binarix128
What linux distros do you use in your old 2004 computers? That might be helpful for me.
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #25 on: October 31, 2020, 10:07:19 PM » Author: xmaslightguy
I setup Lubuntu on an older Dell desktop PC for my father, and it works quite well.
There is both a 64 & 32 bit version, and even a Raspberry Pi version.
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #26 on: October 31, 2020, 10:08:44 PM » Author: Ash
I use Gentoo on nearly all computers i have, from 2004 to most modern. However, it is much the opposite of the Linux systems you are looking for. It is outstandingly powerful system but it takes quite some work and understanding of Linux to use its power. I don't recommend it to you now. (Feel free to prove me wrong, if you manage to master Gentoo)



Have a look at Arch

https://www.archlinux.org/

It does require some work too (much less than Gentoo) to install and manage (in terminal, no install wizards), so you will need experimenting and reading around to understand how it works. Use a 2nd computer with internet to look at the manual etc while you are experimenting with Arch on the 1st, or do your first Arch experiment in a virtual machine

Arch is 64 bit only. (It used to be 32 too but Arch 32 was discontinued. There are still other Arch based systems that are 32, but your netbook seems to be 64 so you can run the default Arch). Arch supports all desktops available on Linux

I used Arch in the past (around late 00s to ~2012) alongside Gentoo, but largely moved away from it back to Gentoo-only. I still use Arch in the occasional "make it work quicky" install and in computers i install for family



If you are interested in Arch, ask and i'll see what you might need to know / have explained so you can install Arch using the Arch installation manual

There are many other distributions that may be better suitable for you than Arch, but i am not familiar with any of them to recommend it. I might try out one or two for you on an old computer, to see what it is like / whether there are any problems
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #27 on: October 31, 2020, 10:13:27 PM » Author: Binarix128
First I'll try to swap to a lightweight desktop on linux mint from the app manager as you say, if it doesn't improve any performance at all I'll directly install arch on the computer, as there is no data stored in it yet. If I decide to install arch a manual of installation to follow will be very helpful to me.
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #28 on: October 31, 2020, 10:30:58 PM » Author: Ash
There is a manual in the Arch wiki, but you have to know some more things in Linux to be able to follow it (which are not explained there). If you choose to try Arch, i can explain them to you
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Re: What linux distribution would you recommend me? « Reply #29 on: November 01, 2020, 01:54:25 PM » Author: Binarix128
I also wonder if I could break a macbook, a play station or any computer stuck with a jail system. I want to converter my PS2 into a media center and for run software freely, and getting rid of DRMs and jails.

I installed lxde from the software manager, but I have no idea how to apply it and change the desktop.  :-\
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