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All my installation of Linux does is swap to file anytime I use an app. It took 5 min to load Firefox just to post this. Is there a memory ...
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  1. #1
    Just Joined! fstemp's Avatar
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    Swap file activity


    All my installation of Linux does is swap to file anytime I use an app. It took 5 min to load Firefox just to post this. Is there a memory or performance setting I'm missing? To be frank this moves worst then a Win98 machine.

    Currently installed on a AMD K6 400mhz machine with 128 meg of ram. According to a Guru site I went to that should be more then enough for Linux. Not bashing, trying to learn and get it set correctly so I can make a good and fair eval. Thanks for any help!

    Fred

    ps. Heck OpenOfficer won't open for me to spell check this posting because of all the hard drive activity, it is literally non stop.

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer Javasnob's Avatar
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    Just curious, what desktop environment are you using? Certain DEs/window managers can suck up a lot of resources.
    Flies of a particular kind, i.e. time-flies, are fond of an arrow.

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  3. #3
    Just Joined! fstemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Javasnob
    Just curious, what desktop environment are you using? Certain DEs/window managers can suck up a lot of resources.

    KDE that was with the Install.

  4. #4
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Contrary to popular belief, Linux running a popular desktop environment like KDE will not run well on a machine with the specs you mentioned. Open Office is particularly memory hungry, and I would suggest a minimum of 512 MB of RAM for running that, although it will run on less.

    Javasnob is right to mention desktop environments. When people say 'Linux will run on this or that machine' what are they talking about? Strictly speaking Linux is the kernel of the system, and there are so many other things to consider, most of which will use your system's resources.

    You might think about using the Fluxbox environment instead of KDE or Gnome which both need a lot of memory. The other alternative is to try Damn Small Linux or Vector Linux which are less demanding on your computer. Most Linux distros are made for higher spec. machines than you're talking about.

    You mentioned Win 98, but think about how long ago it was released. Hardware has moved on a bit since then in terms of performance. Also, it's no longer supported so you're better off trying open source imho.
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  5. #5
    Linux Guru antidrugue's Avatar
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    Fluxbox is fast and light, but not necessarely beginner friendly. You might want to look at XFCE, which I'm sure you can install using Mandriva's package management sytem.
    "To express yourself in freedom, you must die to everything of yesterday. From the 'old', you derive security; from the 'new', you gain the flow."

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    Just Joined! fstemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antidrugue
    Fluxbox is fast and light, but not necessarely beginner friendly. You might want to look at XFCE, which I'm sure you can install using Mandriva's package management sytem.
    So do I d/l a Source or Subversion? I don't see one for Mandriva on the website.

    XFCE's website isn't responding, but I like that it looks a lot like OSX. So the desktop environemnt in Unix/Linux has the same overhead and system resource issues as Windows? IF this is true, what is the advantage to Linux over Windows? (be gentle, I'm a newbie trying to learn )

    Thanks!

    Fred

  7. #7
    Linux Engineer Javasnob's Avatar
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    I think for Mandriva you can use urmpi to download and install packages. The graphical environment doesn't neccessarily have the same overhead as Windows, but environments like GNOME and KDE are more resource-hungry than, for example, Fluxbox or Evilwm. XFCE is known as being a good comprimise between "user friendliness" and resource-consumption. I say "user friendly" because user friendliness nowadays implies being easy to learn coming from a Windows environment...I personally find my Openbox setup to be very user friendly. =P
    Flies of a particular kind, i.e. time-flies, are fond of an arrow.

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  8. #8
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fstemp
    IF this is true, what is the advantage to Linux over Windows? (be gentle, I'm a newbie trying to learn )
    Hello - that's one of those questions that demands a long answer. I don't have much time this morning, but Linux is:

    * free as in free beer and freedom: it's worth studying the GPL licence a little;
    * running it is cheap and sustainable: no need to depend on help-lines or nasty licensing agreements;
    * more secure as long as you implement its security features and take some time to learn about that;
    * largely free of viruses;
    * more stable: what's a blue screen?
    * supports true multi-tasking;
    * highly customisable: you can alter almost anything to suit yourself;
    * part of a culture and community: we don't bite but we snarl sometimes;
    * able to make you more appealing to the opposite sex (I made that up: sorry);
    * it uses your system resources very efficiently. I have a fairly low spec machine and I'm happy with it ... I might upgrade soon, but I'm not losing sleep.

    There are some negatives. Game support isn't good (but possible), there's a learning curve to go through - but nothing's perfect. Mandriva tends to include 'bleeding edge' applications, so you will encounter bugs but they won't ruin your life. Open office is rather huge and RAM hungry, but it works very well indeed. There's actually very little you can't do with a good Linux OS.

    - fingal
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  9. #9
    Just Joined! fstemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Javasnob
    I think for Mandriva you can use urmpi to download and install packages. The graphical environment doesn't neccessarily have the same overhead as Windows, but environments like GNOME and KDE are more resource-hungry than, for example, Fluxbox or Evilwm. XFCE is known as being a good comprimise between "user friendliness" and resource-consumption. I say "user friendly" because user friendliness nowadays implies being easy to learn coming from a Windows environment...I personally find my Openbox setup to be very user friendly. =P
    I have downloaded Fluxbox and done the compiling, per Readme, but I can't figure out how to make it the new Desktop. Is there a bootup file I need to config to tell it to replace KDE with Fluxbox?

    Thanks!

  10. #10
    Just Joined! fstemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fingal
    Hello - that's one of those questions that demands a long answer. I don't have much time this morning, but Linux is:

    * free as in free beer and freedom: it's worth studying the GPL licence a little;
    * running it is cheap and sustainable: no need to depend on help-lines or nasty licensing agreements;
    * more secure as long as you implement its security features and take some time to learn about that;
    * largely free of viruses;
    * more stable: what's a blue screen?
    * supports true multi-tasking;
    * highly customisable: you can alter almost anything to suit yourself;
    * part of a culture and community: we don't bite but we snarl sometimes;
    * able to make you more appealing to the opposite sex (I made that up: sorry);
    * it uses your system resources very efficiently. I have a fairly low spec machine and I'm happy with it ... I might upgrade soon, but I'm not losing sleep.

    There are some negatives. Game support isn't good (but possible), there's a learning curve to go through - but nothing's perfect. Mandriva tends to include 'bleeding edge' applications, so you will encounter bugs but they won't ruin your life. Open office is rather huge and RAM hungry, but it works very well indeed. There's actually very little you can't do with a good Linux OS.

    - fingal
    fingal,

    Thanks for the reply. I'm hoping to pull me and my family off the dependency of Windows, but to do that I have to make sure I understand it, can find comparable applications and be able to use our current computers. Thanks for the reply!

    Fred

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