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Linuxhelp _ General Discussion _ Best Linux Distro for old parts and old users

Posted by: clem2270 Apr 23 2014, 09:34 PM


I'm hoping that someone here is able to help.

I'm a returning college student (local community college) and I'm a member in the colleges computer club. Our club has been given the opportunity to either recycle (sell for scrap) or rebuild & donate a room full of old computers and assorted computer parts.

Unfortunately I personally have almost no experience with using any Linux Distro (been Microsoft user from day one, for over 20 years).

So I'm wondering which (free) Linux Distro you would recommend for users with either no computer experience at all OR users with only Windows experience?

Next with this room full of old and various computer parts; which (free) Linux Distro would be able to provide a Windows "like" experience with the least amount of hardware requirements?

Ultimately these computers would be given to low income families or the low income elderly in our community, who require a computer to do the typical online activities.

If you need any further info, just let me know.


Posted by: michaelk Apr 24 2014, 06:52 AM

Old is very subjective. Difficult to say without some hardware specifications. A computer that was purchased with XP and has a least a 1GB of RAM can run almost any distribution but might benefit with a light weight desktop vs Gnome or KDE.

linux mint tops the chart. While there are desktops that look like windows linux isn't so forget about the like experience. You can try some live CDs and pick the one you like the best.


Posted by: clem2270 Apr 24 2014, 09:59 PM

thanks for the reply 'michaelk'

I think most of the "old" computers that we have to work with are Pentium 4 class machines, with unknown amounts of memory; but some of the machines are older (Pentium II's or III's).

After reviewing some of the other post's here, I ran across 'distrowatch' being suggested, so I have checked that site out and I have tried to do further research based upon what I found there, but I could not find any mention of system requirements for any of the distro's and that is really what we are interested to figure out first.

This way we can use 1 Linux Distro for all the machines, so there will be less confusion when it comes time to setup these machines.

Thanks again for your help so far.

Posted by: michaelk Apr 25 2014, 06:53 AM

Finding minimum requirements can be difficult for some distributions. In most cases you have to go to their website.
Really old computers with not a lot of RAM take a look at:
Antix, Salix or SliTaz.

You can also try Debian with xfce

Posted by: clem2270 Apr 29 2014, 05:20 PM

thanks for the reply 'michaelk'

I will bring this info to my next club meeting; and take it from there.

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