2009-02-11

Lightweight Linux

Lightweight Linux: The computer I am using for my web server is an old Compaq DeskPro 4000 I bought second-hand many years ago. It has an Intel Pentium II 233MMX CPU, 256MB RAM, and a 13GB HDD. It is running the standard LAMP: Debian Etch GNU/Linux, Apache2, MySQL, and PHP.

It came off server duties for a little while while I tried to make it a desktop system for general family and guest use, but even with XFCE or Fluxbox I was not happy with the speed. As a web server it is also slow, but I can live with it.

For a while it was command line only, but I got tired of using wget to download CMS updates and so on. I'd have to use another computer to edit the HTML files, or suffer through Nano. Yesterday I decided to put Xwindow on it, and go with the Fluxbox window manager. This combination should not slow down the system too much, and I only have to start X when I need it.

On the command line I used:

File Manager: Midnight Commander (MC)

Email: Mutt

IRC: irssi (usually through Screen)

Text Editor: Nano

Web Browser: Lynx

Package Installer: Apt-Get (sometimes Aptitude)

I will continue to use these applications, but now with the GUI installed, I wanted some lightweight graphical programs too. They have to take up very little HDD space, and not have too much overhead with running so as to slow down the serving of web pages too much.

Here is what I have decided to start with:

File Manager: ROX-filer

Text Editor: NEdit

HTML Editor: Geany

Web Browser: Dillo

Audio: XMMS

Image Viewers: feh and GQview

Those were installed today, and will be tried out over the next little while. If anyone has a suggestion for another I should look at, leave a comment.

(Original Blog Post: http://haliburton.homelinux.net/strofficeview/?p=74)