Linux system requirements

Linux system requirements

Post by Koen Van Baele » Thu, 23 Dec 1999 04:00:00



Hi everybody,

what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

--
Koen Van Baelen

http://users.pandora.be/koen.van.baelen
--

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Jehs » Thu, 23 Dec 1999 04:00:00



Quote:> what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

Yes, but very slowly and very limited-ly. You will almost definitely
not be able to run X on that PC, because it's too slow, has too little
ram, and dosen't have enough hard drive space for all the X apps you
may want to use.

I'd recommend at least a P133 with 32mb ram and a 1.2gb hard drive
to be productive at all (and a p200, 64mb, 2.1gb hard drive to have
fun :)

Moshe

--

ICQ 1900670 - 350467 GT Station - 6-0985 - HEF 214

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by jacob walt » Thu, 23 Dec 1999 04:00:00




> > what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> > pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> > RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> Yes, but very slowly and very limited-ly. You will almost definitely
> not be able to run X on that PC, because it's too slow, has too little
> ram, and dosen't have enough hard drive space for all the X apps you
> may want to use.

au contraire... this hardware is perfectly usable.   the first machine
i ever installed linux on was a 486DX2 with 16MB of RAM and an 850 MB
harddrive.  this was around the time of slackware version 2 i think
(mid '95) when i had to use 50+ floppies 'cause i didn't even have a
cdrom.  never mind my friend's machine that was a 386 with i think
12MB ram and 300MB hard drive.  and yes both of us were able to run X.
obviously neither system was particularly fast (kernel compiles took a
good 30-40 minutes on my old machine).  but with a lightweight window
manager like fvwm, a minimal install, and a bit of patience older
hardware will do just fine for things like writing code, surfing the
web, mail servers, or just playing around.  go find an old version of
redhat or slackware and you will be surprised by how little resources
you need to make a very usable system.  today's versions are full of
bloated (but nice) GUI environments, and current computers with their
copious amounts of ram, disk, and cpu cycles have spoiled us ;)

--
waltz at vivaldi dot gmu dot edu

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Keith Rhode » Thu, 23 Dec 1999 04:00:00



> Hi everybody,

> what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> --
> Koen Van Baelen

> http://users.pandora.be/koen.van.baelen
> --

My first Linux system was a 486 50MHz with 8Mbytes of RAM and 80MBytes of
hard disk. Yes, you read correctly, just eighty megabytes of hard drive.

I installed a tiny little Linux in a DOS directory setup using  the UMSDOS
file system.

After that, I swapped the disk for 2.5 GBytes, and although it was a
little slow for some things, with twm it was still usable.

After that, I scraped together the pieces to make a P120 system, with at
first 16MBytes of RAM, still with the 2.5 GByte drive, and used that for
over a year... In fact, until two weeks ago.

When I did that, the 486 became my printer server.... Linux is great for
getting old (therefore cheap or even free) hardware, and learning how to
do thngs like setting up networks, printer/web/ftp/mail servers........

Try searching the web for UMSDOS, for Monkey Linux, for Tiny Linux.

Keith.

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Sean Johnso » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00


It really depends on what you're wanting to do. I currently have Debian
GNU/Linux installed on two machines here at the house. One is a
AMD486-DX2-66 w/32MB RAM and a 300MB hard drive, and the other is a dual
PPro 200 w/128MB RAM and a 9GB hard drive. Now, obviously I don't use
both of these machines in the same kind of way. The 486 is my firewall
and handles all the security stuff for my internet connection. As it
stands it is more than adequate for the task. The dual PPro machine is
where I do all the heavy duty stuff.

Until yesterday I also had a Pentium 200 with 32MB RAM and a 2GB drive
running (the hard drive died yesterday). I used it for the machine that
I want to try things out on where it doesn't matter if I completely fsck
the system. And as soon as I get a new hard drive, it will once again
assume that role.

Once again, it really just depends on what kind of applications you want
to run and/or problems you want to solve.

Sean


> Hi everybody,

> what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> --
> Koen Van Baelen

> http://users.pandora.be/koen.van.baelen
> --

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by de Sa » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00


On Wed, 22 Dec 1999 21:12:03 +0100, Koen Van Baelen

up with:

Quote:>Hi everybody,

>what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
>pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
>RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

It will be somewhat limited (With only 800 megs, it will be tightly
packed) BUT! The processor is plenty fast and, although it will be
asking for swap space constantly, you can run GIMP competently on it.

One of my favorite Little Guy Linux stories:

I have a 486 66 with 32MB and a 10GB HD that serves up my web site
(BTW, it's www.tornadosedge.com ) I tried to upgrade it to a
spankin'-new AMD K-62 350MhZ with 64MB, and...

It fried it. It didn't WANT to be upgraded. It wanted to remain just
the way it was. I think having a huge HD went to its head! But when I
got a new CPU and mobo, I went ahead and bought a new HD, mouse,
(used) monitor, KB, and POOF! I had an ultra-powerful Linux box! Now I
use it to play around (it is affectionately known as the PlayBox)

My SysAdmin has even remotely run GIMP on the web-server using an
XClient. Worked just fine, though slow (hey, GIMP asks for a LOT of
FLOPS!)

What's more...My web-server has a monochrome monitor (Brand name is
DeltaGold). One more juxtaposition if I may: NT won't work with a
monochrome monitor.

In short, yes, it will work just fine. Just pack it in carefully.-de
Sade

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Dries van Ooste » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00




> > Hi everybody,

> > what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> > pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> > RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> > --
> > Koen Van Baelen

> > http://www.veryComputer.com/
> > --

> My first Linux system was a 486 50MHz with 8Mbytes of RAM and 80MBytes of
> hard disk. Yes, you read correctly, just eighty megabytes of hard drive.

My first linux system was a PII, but when I got the hang of it, I
installed it on all the old *I had lying around. A 486 dx4 100 MHZ
with 32 megs, a 386 sx 40 with 8 megs and now thanks to the ELKS people
I'm even going to be able to install it on my girlfriends 286 laptop.

Groeten,
Dries

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Dries van Ooste » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00



> Hi everybody,

> what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

It will work perfectly. If you want to use a 2.2.x kernel, do not use the
RedHat distribution, since it installs a lot and asks questions later. If
you use a 2.0.x kernel, you have all the space in the world and don't need
to try to install tight.

Groeten,
Dries

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Dries van Ooste » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00




> > what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> > pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> > RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> Yes, but very slowly and very limited-ly. You will almost definitely
> not be able to run X on that PC, because it's too slow, has too little
> ram, and dosen't have enough hard drive space for all the X apps you
> may want to use.

You have got to be kidding, right? I know people who ran X when 800 Meg
harddisk where still server equipment. And they didn't complain. Works
better then running g*ddamn win9x on a 486. Linux without X will run like
the wind. Compiling a kernel might take a few ours, but X-less apps really
don't need that much.

Quote:> I'd recommend at least a P133 with 32mb ram and a 1.2gb hard drive
> to be productive at all (and a p200, 64mb, 2.1gb hard drive to have
> fun :)

Depends on what you call productive. If you can't be productive on a 486,
you prolly work in the graphics industry or something like that, because
for most tasks a 486 is more then enough.

Groeten,
Dries

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Dries van Ooste » Fri, 24 Dec 1999 04:00:00



> au contraire... this hardware is perfectly usable.   the first machine
> i ever installed linux on was a 486DX2 with 16MB of RAM and an 850 MB
> harddrive.  this was around the time of slackware version 2 i think
> (mid '95) when i had to use 50+ floppies 'cause i didn't even have a
> cdrom.

That's why I usually call slackware -> stackware. I don't use X on the 386
(it doesn't have a keyboard or monitor, I only use the ports and the
network card) so I only needed 30 disks *grin*.

Quote:> today's versions are full of bloated (but nice) GUI environments, and
> current computers with their copious amounts of ram, disk, and cpu
> cycles have spoiled us ;)

I agree. Most processors today are sitting in their idle loop 90% of the
time so that this or that window will pop up in the blink of an eye and
people say they need that to be productive. I don't think there are that
many people that are so productive that they can't wait for 10 seconds
before an xterm opens.

Groeten,
Dries

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Sean Johnso » Sat, 25 Dec 1999 04:00:00


You won't be installing Linux on a 286 .... Linux requires at least a
32-bit processor, and the 286es (all of them) are only 16-bit.

Sean


> and now thanks to the ELKS people
> I'm even going to be able to install it on my girlfriends 286 laptop.

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by de Sa » Sat, 25 Dec 1999 04:00:00


On Thu, 23 Dec 1999 14:21:13 +0100, Dries van Oosten

with:

Quote:>I agree. Most processors today are sitting in their idle loop 90% of the
>time so that this or that window will pop up in the blink of an eye and
>people say they need that to be productive. I don't think there are that
>many people that are so productive that they can't wait for 10 seconds
>before an xterm opens.

>Groeten,
>Dries

Um...No. An xterm will open in almost nothing flat even in a low-power
machine. Maybe if you have it dithering a .jpg and compiling a kernel
it might take 10 seconds, but I've NEVER seen it take more than 1/4
second to pop up an xterm, and never more than 10 seconds for
something like Netscpape to load. 'Course, those ARE on modern HD's.
But anyway, a low-power machine will be slower if you're dealing with
GIMP, naturally, but if you're just dealing with files you won't
notice a difference. P.S. This holds true between mid- and high-speed
CPU's as well. F'rinstance, my friend has a P233 that is about as fast
as my afore-mentioned AMDK-62/350. (You oughta see him make it go! He
can push it to the limit! It's great to watch!)-de Sade
 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Spik » Sat, 25 Dec 1999 04:00:00



Quote:> You won't be installing Linux on a 286 .... Linux requires at least a
> 32-bit processor, and the 286es (all of them) are only 16-bit.

That's not the limitation with the 286. The limitation is the lack of MMU,
thus preventing memory swapping.

The same can me said for the 68000, 68020, etc.
No MMU == No Linux.

ELKS however, is a cutdown kernel and it probably IS possible to run it on a
286. That's probably one of the things it was designed for.

--
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Linux system requirements

Post by Lew Pitche » Sat, 25 Dec 1999 04:00:00




> > what are the system requirements to run Linux? I've heard they are
> > pretty low. I want to install Linux on a 486 DX2 66 Mhz with 16 megs of
> > RAM and about 800 megs of harddisk space. Will this work?

> Yes, but very slowly and very limited-ly. You will almost definitely
> not be able to run X on that PC, because it's too slow, has too little
> ram, and dosen't have enough hard drive space for all the X apps you
> may want to use

Bzzzzt!!  Wrong answer.

Yes, a 486DX2-66 w 16Mb ram and 600 Mb hd is comparatively small
these days, but it will run X and (with a lightweight X wm) X apps
very well. The Slackware 3.3 install I have on my 486DX2-80 takes
(at max) 700 Mb hd. Pared down to the essential tools it would take
about 300 Mb. With reasonable t*, you could put it at 400-600Mb
without major limitations. Give yourself a larger swap partition
(say 64 Mb), and 16Mb ram is enough (that's what I run my 486 server
with). X and Netscape 4.07 run well enough on that platform, but
only with a lightweight WM like wmx or Blackbox or Ude. Don't go
for Gnome or KDE; they take up too much memory to be of use on a
16Mb machine.

Quote:

> I'd recommend at least a P133 with 32mb ram and a 1.2gb hard drive
> to be productive at all (and a p200, 64mb, 2.1gb hard drive to have
> fun :)

I'd like that box. Can I get one for less that CAN $300.00? That's how
much my 486 cost me.

> Moshe

> --

> ICQ 1900670 - 350467 GT Station - 6-0985 - HEF 214

--
Lew Pitcher

Master Codewright and JOAT-in-training

 
 
 

Linux system requirements

Post by Greg H » Tue, 28 Dec 1999 04:00:00



> au contraire... this hardware is perfectly usable.   the first machine
> i ever installed linux on was a 486DX2 with 16MB of RAM and an 850 MB
> harddrive.  this was around the time of slackware version 2 i think
> (mid '95) when i had to use 50+ floppies 'cause i didn't even have a
> cdrom.  never mind my friend's machine that was a 386 with i think
> 12MB ram and 300MB hard drive.  and yes both of us were able to run X.

   Same here, but with a 486SX25 and 4 MB of RAM.  X ran acceptably
fast at the time relative to everything else.

   Greg H.