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Cyber72
March 26th, 2012, 04:13 AM
I currently use XP and I'm thinking of switching to Ubuntu. I bought my current PC in 2006, it came with 256 Mbytes of RAM. Normal use then was about 150Mb - the only time all the RAM was used was during a download or a scan (AVG). By 2008 all the RAM was used regularly so I bought an extra 1Gb. Now it is generally using about 700Mb - more than 4 times as much as it used to need. But for what? I can't see that I can do anything that I couldn't do 6 years go nor does it do anything better or faster.

So I thought maybe Linux would be better. But I found that the recommended minimum for the latest version of Ubuntu is 1Mb. To me this a bit like requiring a 10 acre field to play a game of football. I mean even 256Mb is a colossal amount of RAM. More bad news for me I'm afraid is that there seems to be a new version of Ubuntu every few months. I presume my ever expanding XP RAM requirements are due to new versions of software.

I am mystified by IT's obsession with updating and bringing out ever new versions which all seems to be at odds with the desire of many normal users. Perhaps I lack imagination but I can't think of anything I would like a computer to do that mine can't already do. Is there a version of Linux for people like me? And why, why, why does Ubuntu need 1Gb of Ram, What on earth can it be doing while I'm playing bridge, browsing,reading my email and seeing the odd video news clip?

jerome1232
March 26th, 2012, 04:18 AM
The shiny, sparkly interface is what it's doing. If your looking for something light, try Xubuntu, or Lubuntu, these are just Ubuntu with lighter Desktop Environments, xfce (Xubuntu) is a good mix of sparkle and performance, where lxde (Lubuntu) is very lightweight, it looks fairly nice as well.

dcstar
March 26th, 2012, 09:25 AM
........
Why does Ubuntu need 1Gb of Ram, What on earth can it be doing while I'm playing bridge, browsing,reading my email and seeing the odd video news clip?

Because it does.

There are plenty of other Linux distros about that run in low resource environments, pick one of them.

raja.genupula
March 26th, 2012, 09:34 AM
Yup I agree with them , and you should choose a lighter Ubuntu if you wanna get some more speedy things .

Xubuntu really awesome at 1 GB of RAM .
Lubuntu needs - 256 MB RAM

try them.

Rodney9
March 26th, 2012, 09:53 AM
I love Xubuntu on my laptop with 1Gb of ram.

http://seandavis-blog.blogspot.com.au/2011/12/xubuntu-1110-setup-guide.html

squilookle
March 26th, 2012, 10:34 AM
I am mystified by IT's obsession with updating and bringing out ever new versions which all seems to be at odds with the desire of many normal users.

This is why Ubuntu has the LTS releases. More info here if you are not familiar with them (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LTS).

If you don't want to upgrade every six months, you can happily stick to the LTS releases and ignore the releases in between - but without the releases in between Ubuntu would not progress anywhere!

You might also consider other distributions that do not update so often - Debian stable is supported for a long time, as are some enterprise type distributions like CentOS.

You have plenty of choice in terms of how heavy your operating system should be, and in how often it is updated. You just need to look at and maybe try a few distros to see what suits you.

bikodog
March 26th, 2012, 12:02 PM
there's also puppy linux which runs fantastic on 1GB from live CD

mcduck
March 26th, 2012, 12:37 PM
Yup I agree with them , and you should choose a lighter Ubuntu if you wanna get some more speedy things .

Xubuntu really awesome at 1 GB of RAM .
Lubuntu needs - 256 MB RAM

try them.

...and a minimal install + Openbox runs fine with about 40 MB of RAM. :)

It's not a question of how much memory Ubuntu requires (which is actually vewry little), it's more about how much the desktop environment and programs need to work.

muteXe
March 26th, 2012, 01:00 PM
I am mystified by IT's obsession with updating and bringing out ever new versions which all seems to be at odds with the desire of many normal users. Perhaps I lack imagination but I can't think of anything I would like a computer to do that mine can't already do. Is there a version of Linux for people like me? And why, why, why does Ubuntu need 1Gb of Ram, What on earth can it be doing while I'm playing bridge, browsing,reading my email and seeing the odd video news clip?

You could try debian maybe?

cortman
March 26th, 2012, 02:28 PM
I mean even 256Mb is a colossal amount of RAM. More bad news for me I'm afraid is that there seems to be a new version of Ubuntu every few months.

You think 256 MB of RAM is colossal? Frankly, you need to look around you- standard on most latptops these days is 4-6 GB. This is called progress. The times they are a'changing.

I would recommend you read up on Ubuntu LTS (long-term release). Install that (the next one is coming in exactly a month) and you'll have support for 5 years. You don't have to upgrade in between at all if you choose not to.

philinux
March 26th, 2012, 02:37 PM
I currently use XP and I'm thinking of switching to Ubuntu. I bought my current PC in 2006, it came with 256 Mbytes of RAM. Normal use then was about 150Mb - the only time all the RAM was used was during a download or a scan (AVG). By 2008 all the RAM was used regularly so I bought an extra 1Gb. Now it is generally using about 700Mb - more than 4 times as much as it used to need. But for what? I can't see that I can do anything that I couldn't do 6 years go nor does it do anything better or faster.

So I thought maybe Linux would be better. But I found that the recommended minimum for the latest version of Ubuntu is 1Mb. To me this a bit like requiring a 10 acre field to play a game of football. I mean even 256Mb is a colossal amount of RAM. More bad news for me I'm afraid is that there seems to be a new version of Ubuntu every few months. I presume my ever expanding XP RAM requirements are due to new versions of software.

I am mystified by IT's obsession with updating and bringing out ever new versions which all seems to be at odds with the desire of many normal users. Perhaps I lack imagination but I can't think of anything I would like a computer to do that mine can't already do. Is there a version of Linux for people like me? And why, why, why does Ubuntu need 1Gb of Ram, What on earth can it be doing while I'm playing bridge, browsing,reading my email and seeing the odd video news clip?

6 years of Moore's law. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moore%27s_law

I just checked a major online retailer and nearly all their laptops come with 4Gig of ram and windows 7. So 1 gig for Ubuntu seems pretty modest for 2012.

Thread moved to Recurring Discussions forum.

Paddy Landau
March 26th, 2012, 03:16 PM
... To me this a bit like requiring a 10 acre field to play a game of football.
That assumes, of course, that Ubuntu is a second-rate operating system. As it can do anything any other operating system can do, with eye-catching eye-candy to boot, I don't think it unreasonable.


I am mystified by IT's obsession with updating and bringing out ever new versions...
That's competition. To stay ahead of the game, you need to keep improving and innovating. The same applies to cars, smart-phones, buildings...

Fortunately, computers don't rise in price as cars do. And, equally fortunately, there are distributions especially designed for older computers. Try Lubuntu (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Lubuntu) (256Mb) or Xubuntu (http://xubuntu.org/) (512Mb) as already stated, or Bodhi (http://www.bodhilinux.com/) (128Mb; non-Ubuntu), which is even lighter.

snowpine
March 26th, 2012, 03:48 PM
To elaborate on Philinux's comment, Ubuntu is actually a little bit behind the curve of Moore's law. I would say that Ubuntu "runs better on old hardware" than, say, the current Windows release. You just need to recalibrate your definition of "old hardware" every 18-24 months, as the computer hardware industry is very fast-moving. Your 256mb RAM is less than the typical smartphone; for example, last year Apple was criticized for including "only" 512mb in the iPhone. :)

jerome1232
March 26th, 2012, 03:56 PM
The fact that I have Ubuntu running on this speaks volumes, I'm sure if it took out apache and a few other services running it could even run a gui. This computer originally had windows 98 on it.


free -m
total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 116 113 3 0 28 41
-/+ buffers/cache: 43 73
Swap: 187 22 165

Cyber72
March 26th, 2012, 06:15 PM
Thanks V impressed by this forum - people are helpful and polite. As far as computer prices go, I bought a dell laptop a few years ago for 170, they start at 400 these days. My old Macintosh Performa still works, I bought it in preference to the then new PowerMac on the advice of an IT pro who considered the 4Mb of Ram the Powermac required as excessive his words were "If you can't do it with 1Mb it's not worth doing"

aysiu
March 26th, 2012, 07:01 PM
The latest Ubuntu goes for fancy graphics and animations. That's why it has a 1 GB minimum requirement, which is really not that much, as others have mentioned. If you try to run Windows 7 or Mac OS X Lion on 1 GB of RAM, you'll see what I mean.

That said, you can run Ubuntu without all the extras and animations. Xubuntu and Lubuntu are much lighter. You can also install your own minimalist Ubuntu with just only what you want, and it'll run on 128 MB of RAM and fly.

The other thing is that unused RAM is basically wasted RAM, so if you see Ubuntu using all 256 MB of RAM, it's doing what it's supposed to be doing.

SemiExpert
March 26th, 2012, 07:16 PM
I'd advise the OP to consider upgrading RAM, as 256MB was very minimal even back in 2006. I'm not optimistic about a Live CD with so little memory, although there's always the possibility of a command line installation. I've done it. My suggestion is that the OP should figure out his hardware specifications, with a program such as HWiNFO32, to figure out exactly which speed of RAM he needs. Then find the Dell Service Manual for his specific model. And finally, go shopping for RAM. http://www.hwinfo.com/

philinux
March 26th, 2012, 07:38 PM
I'd advise the OP to consider upgrading RAM, as 256MB was very minimal even back in 2006. I'm not optimistic about a Live CD with so little memory, although there's always the possibility of a command line installation. I've done it. My suggestion is that the OP should figure out his hardware specifications, with a program such as HWiNFO32, to figure out exactly which speed of RAM he needs. Then find the Dell Service Manual for his specific model. And finally, go shopping for RAM. http://www.hwinfo.com/

First post says he bought an extra 1 gig.

Peripheral Visionary
March 27th, 2012, 02:03 AM
My old hand-me-down Dell with 512 mb of RAM runs splendidly on Xubuntu 10.04. For a time I was testing Xubuntu 12.04 and it was a tad slower, but it had some defaults that were a little more resource hungry - turn off the eye candy and bingo: Fast as Lucid.

TeamRocket1233c
March 29th, 2012, 01:54 PM
Three words: custom Ubuntu install. A minimal install of any distro, Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, whatever, is fully customizable to suit you and your PC's needs.