Which OS to use on old lappy?

Hi, i've just relocated to a new place, and i've had to leave my E8400 machine behind. I now use my sisters old Pentium M 1.73 GHz lappy, with 1.25GB of RAM and a 40GB HDD.

It lappy currently runs Win XP SP3, and i'm actually surprised as to how fast it runs. However, i was just curious if it could run linux a bit faster. Ubuntu 12.04 is a very beautiful environment to work on, and i am very comfortable with using it, but unfortunately it was quite heavy on resources the last time i checked.

After reading around, Lubuntu and Xubuntu are 2 names that popped up. I just want to noe if its a good idea to use any of these two, and dump win XP.
Also, do they use the same Ubuntu software center? I'd hate to use something like fedora etc coz i can't figure out how to install stuff through Terminal.
VLC, Audacious, Firefox and liberoffice are my main requirements, but i also need to noe if these OSes support my Tata Docomo 3G wireless broadband dongle like ubuntu does.

Also, my Pentium M doesn't support PAE, so will my lappy be able to run lubuntu/xubuntu??
9 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. You can actually probably stick with Ubuntu and install a different desktop environment. If you go into the software manager and install Gnome. If that is still too taxing, install LXDE.

    When you login you can choose which desktop environment you want to run. Now that I'm sitting here thinking about it, Gnome may already be installed out of the box.
  2. Best answer
    I, myself, would recommend xubuntu, as it is lightweight, but not too lightweight - It does actually look quite nice, after it is tweaked (That is also another benefit of xfce - it can be tweaked greatly).
    And yes - there is the Ubuntu Software Centre, as well as synaptic and, I think, GDebi. :)
  3. I recommend antiX-M11, with no DE just a Windows Manager (WM) -- see
    Also, use smxi script -- -- for post-install tweaks made easy

    Or try peppermint and add the internal apps desired via ubuntu repos --

    Best wishes!
  4. BTW most of these distrobutions listed come with a livecd/liveusb variant so you can try them out without installing them to the harddrive!
    (now for my plug)

    crunchbang is a wonderful distrobution that will be great on your laptop

    as far as getting your 3g modem to work, its simply a matter of installing the firmware and loading the appropriate module. it may or may not already come preinstalled. need to know the chipset it uses to know for sure.

    can't figure out how to install stuff through Terminal

    on debian based (like ubuntu) systems, installing software through the terminal is simple. this example command will install all the software you listed, though firefox and vlc come preinstalled:
    sudo apt-get install vlc firefox libreoffice Audacious

    to update your system:
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get upgrade
  5. In addition to the above, you may want to check out

    For "Ubuntu" with classic look (start menu etc.) try Linux Mint Xfce. I'm currently running Linux Mint in various flavors on 3 different PCs, including an old Dell laptop with similar specs as yours but only 500MB memory (using an older Linux Mint LXDE desktop). Linux Mint is very user friendly (in my opinion) and most everything can be configured or installed through GUI. Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu so if you're familiar with it, you should find it quite easy. It also uses the Ubuntu repositories for most stuff, except the Linux Mint specific things like mintmenu etc.
  6. @skittle Thanx for the terminal tips:) I'd hate to google everytime for the right command (i'm bad at spellings) when i have to install a software, that's why i prefer a gui :)
  7. Thanx every1 for providing me with a range of wonderful solutions :)
    dmroeder and powerhouse32, its a shame i cudn't vote a best answer for you guys too !
  8. Best answer selected by $hawn.
  9. $hawn said:
    Thanx every1 for providing me with a range of wonderful solutions :)
    dmroeder and powerhouse32, its a shame i cudn't vote a best answer for you guys too !

    meh, I'm just here to offer any help I can. Glad you found a solution.
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