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Improving graphics perormance on old computer


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#1 lti

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 12:20 PM

I seem to have the same problem as pcpunk in this topic. My computer's graphics hardware is no longer fully supported, and there doesn't seem to be any easy way to add direct rendering support in newer distros. It looks like direct rendering was intended for 3D graphics acceleration, but it seems to be used for a lot of 2D applications as well.

 

I'm using the HP laptop I was trying to install Lubuntu on a few years ago:

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/499115/lubuntu-installation-fails/

I got Lubuntu 14.04 to install by using different software to create the bootable USB drive. It performs poorly due to the lack of support for the S3 Twister K graphics hardware (using the Savage driver). Updating large portions of the screen (for example, while dragging windows) is slow.

 

There is a package for Ubuntu 12.04 that provided direct rendering drivers for older hardware (mesa-legacy), but it doesn't support any newer versions of Ubuntu. I wouldn't mind changing distros, but I haven't seen one that includes the direct rendering driver. Also, this computer has no optical drive and USB booting is unreliable. What options do I have?


Edited by lti, 06 February 2016 - 12:25 PM.


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#2 raymac46

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 09:21 PM

Just my 2 cents worth:

Linux can do wonders to rejuvenate older hardware but after a while the laws of diminishing returns set in. Right now I don't try with anything older than 10 years. Most old processors that don't support SSE2 won't run Flash in Linux. It's hardly worth fixing up anything that won't support 64 bits or isn't a dual core. And of course a lot of the old video solutions are deprecated and removed from the latest kernels.

I would just junk the old machine, frankly. You can get a used Thinkpad cheap and start over. Or find a Netbook from 2011 which your neighbor is about to throw away.

 

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#3 lti

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 10:38 PM

I would like to find something better. Unfortunately, used computers are hard to find and expensive where I live. People keep their computers until they're almost unusable and then try to sell them instead of throwing them away.

 

I don't expect this computer to last much longer anyway, so I'll probably just downgrade to Lubuntu 12.04. It's still supported until 2017, and I will probably have a better computer by then.



#4 raymac46

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 08:18 AM

Of course any decision is your choice. If Lubuntu 12.04 will do the job it's probably a wise choice. One of the older Bodhi Linux distros may work as well.



#5 lti

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 05:49 PM

I found out that Lubuntu 12.04 isn't an LTS release, so it is no longer supported. I don't know if that means that it won't receive any updates at all or if it just doesn't receive updates for packages that are only used by Lubuntu.

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Lubuntu/PreviousReleases#A12.04

 

Bodhi is a large download for a "minimal" OS (613.4MB for version 2.4.0). I also looked at LXLE, and it looks like it wouldn't run well on this computer. I think it needs more RAM and better graphics hardware.

 

I'd like to know about any other distros I could try. If it wasn't for the graphics hardware, there would be a lot of options, even for something this old.


Edited by lti, 08 February 2016 - 05:50 PM.


#6 pcpunk

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 06:00 PM

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Releases Should be till April 2017

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#7 pcpunk

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 06:06 PM

Maybe this one is better Iti http://www.ubuntu.com/info/release-end-of-life

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#8 lti

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 06:16 PM

The download page for old Lubuntu releases (which I linked to above) says that 12.04 was not an LTS release. Until today, I thought it was an LTS release like normal Ubuntu.

 

If anyone is wondering, I was looking at Ubuntu 12.04 because it is new enough to receive security updates and old enough to support this hardware.



#9 pcpunk

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 07:09 PM

I see, I was thinking it was supported also, and perhaps it is to some extent, need more time to read up on it.  Maybe you should re-consider LXLE and add a lightweight Browser.

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/lxle#LXLE_Paradigm_12.04.3_LTS


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#10 pcpunk

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 07:18 PM

@Iti, what computer are you trying to run this on?  I'm running LXLE on the Acer in my Signature, if that helps.

 

EDIT: HP Pavilion ze1210 with an AMD Athlon XP-M 1400+ CPU, VIA KN133 chipset, and 512MB of RAM.


Edited by pcpunk, 08 February 2016 - 07:23 PM.

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#11 SuperSapien64

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 12:46 AM

Have you considered Linux Lite? Its based off Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and its super lightweight. :)



#12 NickAu

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 01:09 AM

 

I found out that Lubuntu 12.04 isn't an LTS release

That is correct it only had 18 months support if I remember right.



#13 JohnC_21

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 08:36 AM

Actually, 12.04 is a LTS. Maybe you were downloading a point release with HWE.

 

 

 

 



#14 raw

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 11:33 AM

@SuperSapien64

Thnx for that Linux Lite link. :thumbsup2:

 

I believe that will be my new build environment for bclinux.


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#15 raymac46

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 02:53 PM

I've found that Bodhi Linux runs quite well on a machine with only 512 MB of RAM. It's very modular and you can add as much or as little additional packages as you want.






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