[sf-lug] RAM for a DELL Inspiron 4000 notebook; and distro choice

Christian Einfeldt einfeldt at gmail.com
Thu Nov 15 18:14:24 PST 2007


A friend has asked me to install Linux on a computer for her.  She is
starting small and tough, though, and she has given me a Dell Inspiron 4000
with 128 MB of RAM.  That amount of RAM is basically going to limit me to
either Vector or Puppy Linux.  And it gets worse.  She apparently did not
order an ethernet jack with this thing, and so she would only have dial up,
at least until we can get her a wifi card.

So I have three questions:  first, does anyone have any spare RAM for this
notebook that they are willing to part with?  I would really like to get her
started on a more full-bodied distro, if possible.

Second, what distro should we use?  I am thinking that we probably want
something that is really small, as she has only a 10 GB hard drive.  I don't
want to use Damn Small, because in my experience, Damn Small really does
require some CLI proficiency, and she is a rank beginner to Linux, although
she does have a mind like a steel trap and learns quickly, but still, I
don't want to put her through the Damn Small hurdles just yet, particularly
in light of the fact that Damn Small really does require an ethernet
connection to download additional packages to a much greater degree than
Puppy or Vector.  That is why I am thinking of Vector or Puppy.  Vector has
a nicer GUI, IMHO, which is important or simple end users.  So I am sort of
leaning toward Vector.

Third, are there any unusual tricks to installing Linux on a notebook such
as this, or can I basically just load the CD into the CD-ROM and away we
go?  I would appreciate any tips re traps for the unwary.

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