View Full Version : Fedora on older hardware.

19th November 2011, 04:08 AM
I have an older IBM computer and am looking for a Linux distribution to install on it.
I like the looks of Fedora but I don't know if Fedora is a good fit for this older computer.
Here is a discription of the machine that I want to install Fedora onto:

IBM-Intel Pentium 4, -- 1.80GHz -- 133Mhz-FSB and 512 MB-RAM
This machine has a Brookdale-G Graphics Chip set on the mainboard for its Video.

If this machine will not support Fedora, what other distro. would you recommend?
Thank you in advance.

PS. I have looked at Puppy Linux and DSL (and they are great distro.'s) but, if I can make it work, I would prefer to go with Fedora if it is possible.

Chilly Willy
19th November 2011, 04:31 AM
Not sure about your graphics chip, but I ran F14 gnome on a P3 with 512M ram (it's max) & 667Mhz cpu. It wasn't a speed demon but it got the job done.

The best way to tell, w/o a lot of [installation] hassle, is to run a liveCD (or USB - faster operation) & just see how it goes. If it doesn't suite you, you're really not out anything as whatever you use can be used again. (btw: I've use cd [& even dvd] RW's for this, so not out the disc when the OS is "too old")

BTW: If it is to old to boot from USB, there is a program called "PLOP boot manager" that will let you do it. It runs from Floppy to give you access to the usb drives.

19th November 2011, 04:34 AM
I was running Fedora 15 KDE on an old Thinkpad G41 which has a Pentium 4 Mobile processor. It has an old Nvidia FX5200 on board and was using Nouveau successfully. The one difference was that it had 3/4 Gb of memory instead of your 1/2 Gb and that might make a difference as far as speed. I've never used a Brookdale Graphics card, so, I can't help you with that. Gnome 3 might be too heavy for that old machine, a minimal KDE might work, or, you can try the XFCE or LXDE spins. The only way to tell for sure would be to try different DE's with it and see which one suits your needs.

Gareth Jones
19th November 2011, 05:58 AM
Fedora should be okay with 512 MiB RAM as long as you stick to a lighter desktop environment (Xfce or LXDE). Your main problem is likely going to be installing it, as the normal installer refuses to run with less than 768 MiB. I'm not sure if there's a work-around.


Mariusz W
19th November 2011, 11:01 AM
Your main problem is likely going to be installing it, as the normal installer refuses to run with less than 768 MiB. I'm not sure if there's a work-around.

Are you talking about Live CD or DVD? Since the DVD has the minimal installation as one of its options it probably is more forgiving in terms of hardware requirements.

20th November 2011, 12:40 AM
Thank you all for your response to my question.
I have a Fedora 12 Live CD that I have been happy with but, when I try to install it, the installer stops unexpectedly. I thought perhaps it was a bad download/copy but after reading what Gareth Jones wrote (that the installer refuses to run on a machine with less than 768MB of RAM) it makes sense that the problem is with the 512M of RAM that I am trying to install to and not with the copy I have.

I'll look for a workaround to install and if that doesn't work I suppose I'll have to look at a different distro. for this old box.
But I really hope that I can find a way to install Fedora.

Thank you all for your help.:)

Chilly Willy
20th November 2011, 02:44 AM
I installed F14 on 512, so I rather doubt that is the issue. BUT, I HAVE ran into versions that, for whatever reason, would NOT go, so try another before "giving up". (BTW; I think what he is stating started with F15)