Sunday, 29 January 2012

Computers here: mostly Debian :)

I've just had a quick look back - most of my blog posts here reference Debian and Debian installs. Most of the blog posts at (paid) work also reference Debian and Linux, of course :)

A quick retrospective: there used to be four computers under the desk and one above. At the moment, I've got rid of a few computers and there's a Sun in the garage

Desk is still 1.5 m x 0.75: On top of the desk, there's a mini-ITX board "home built" computer and an HP Proliant microserver. Above it there's a four port KVM, a cable modem and Wifi router - ANOTHER WiFi router (free FON Wifi for others).

Under the desk:  1 x mini tower machine waiting for a new home, 1 x tower machine, 1 x plug computer. All of these run Debian, though some of them are mostly switched off - at least one runs Debian testing.

The netbook has gone to Africa with a colleague who was building networks for rural Kenya, along with one of the larger computers, a SheevaPlug and an NSLU2 - all running Debian - and a Chinese netbook with ARM processor which was running a Debian derivative. The laptop I'm using was abandoned by my fiancee as unworkable under Windows - it still has slightly flakey hardware but runs Debian 6.0.4 fine.

[For completeness, my daughter's computer is three or four years old and runs Windows 7 for school work (but also had an Ubuntu VM for a while): my fiancee's laptop is potentially the fastest machine in the house and certainly has the most memory and runs Windows 7.]

Is this an abnormal quota of computers for three people?

A reference picture is above

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Repurposing an old machine

The old machine that I installed Windows XP on in 2009 is now under a desk next door. 1GHz Athlon 32 bit, 40G hard drive, old Radeon card and 512MHz of memory.

It does have 2 removable media drives: one DVD rewriter and one DVD drive.

This is, now, the sort of machine you'd throw away - it won't handle Windows 7 well: it barely handled Windows XP It flies under Debian 6.0 with libreoffice from debian-backports.

It will soon go on to a friend of mine whose computers are even older: he's likely to use this machine extensively because it has real serial ports.

Use Linux - it makes sense on any hardware.

Debian Wheezy

Just upgraded one of the computers here to Wheezy (currently Debian Testing).

The machine is an HP Proliant Microserver - 1.3GHz AMD Neo II processor, integrated graphics and 250G disk - so low power and low spec. I' ve added three more 250G hard disks.

Very impressed indeed by KDE 4.6 and the general speed of response of a desktop environment on a low spec system. No audio subsystem on the system - it's a server - so I can't speak for sound quality.

I say this every time round about now in the release cycle: the next release of Debian (due later this year sometime) will be excellent :)