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Hi, I am totally new to Linux and have never used it before. I want to turn an old Pentium 200 machine into a server for my home LAN, that ...
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  1. #1
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    Best distro for an old Pentium 200 to be a server with GUI


    Hi, I am totally new to Linux and have never used it before.

    I want to turn an old Pentium 200 machine into a server for my home LAN, that can share an internet connection, host files and act as a print server. The network will consist of 3 Windows XP PCs, an Xbox and the Linux server, but compatibility isn't an issue at this point.

    Becuase I'm not good with Linux at all, this command line stuff is very difficult to understand. Therefore, I need a distro that is best for running a server, but also has a GUI.

    I have tried Fedora, FreeBSD, Debian, Lycoris and Knoppix, but to no avail. They have either stopped responding during install, need more hard drive space, required command line input or are unable to provide server and/or GUI capabilities. The closest I got was with Debian, but I couldn't get the serial mouse to work, despite following help from net.

    These are my system specs:
    Pentium MMX 200Mhz processor,
    64MB RAM,
    3.5GB HD

    If anyone knows of a good distro that is made for servers or can be used as a server, easy to set up, and has a GUI, please let me know.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    you might get a lot of replies on this one with people recommending one distro or another, but pretty much any distro will do - as long as its setup correctly.

    i'm not sure how you ran out of space on a 3.5GB hdd. and i'm not sure what you mean by requiring command-line input. i'm going to guess what you mean by these two:

    you probably ran out of space because you selected something like "server" in the fedora (or any other) install, and it installed all of the server capabilities (web, email, ftp, etc.) - but you don't need all of them. you may have done something similar in other installs. what's probably best on a server is a custom install - it's more secure because you won't have all sorts of things installed that you'll never use that become a security risk.

    i'm guessing command line input means you booted for the first time and it was a command-line. just type "startx" after you're logged in and you're in a gui.

    anyways, my bias would be to try FreeBSD again (you could probably tell from the avatar). it's great for server use, and it can run on really really old machines (i think a 486), so it should be fine on yours.

  3. #3
    Linux Guru kkubasik's Avatar
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    Again this is a question that varies greatly from one to another, but Debian/Slack is probably your best bet.
    Avoid the Gates of Hell. Use Linux
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    Formerly Known as qub333

  4. #4
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    I think slackware is your best choice or if you can get your hands on an old distro of RedHat maybe RedHat 6.2 or 7.0

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