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  • Which Linux Distribution Should I use?

    Which Linux Distribution Should I use?

    I have a 2001 Sony Vaio Desktop which came with Windows XP installed. The main hard drive crashed and I replaced it with a new hard drive. This happened during a move to a new place. Something else that happened during the move is this. I lost one of the system restore CD's. I called Sony and they told me that every option I had would cost a lot of money. They no longer distribute the CD's for such an old system and taking it to the local Sony store would cost a minimum 100 dollars for them to even look at it. Another option is to go buy a retail version of XP Home edition but the local store told me that that would cost 120 dollars.

    I would rather NOT go the illegal route and get and use a torrent version of XP. In the long run, that would be even more expensive.

    So I have decided to look into a linux distribution. What Linux distribution would work for a Sony Vaio Desktop PCV-RX540? I especially want it such that I can have a print driver for my Lexmark X125 (which, by the way, is why I have not upgrated this system to Vista or Windows 7 because this printer does not have drivers for later versions of Windows).

  • #2
    You did not mention how much ram you have got. The newer the distribution the more ram you need. KDE 3.5 based like Kanotix Excalibur you could try on it with at least 256 mb ram. Usually i would suggest to have at least 512 mb ram. Win + A/V tool requires about 1 gb ram to run smoothly. Btw. you don't need to buy a licence, the key should be printed on a sticker, so you only need a xp home cd, which should be easyly to get. As sidenote: on a 1 gb ram system you could install Win7, with 32 bit usually old xp drivers also work.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Kano View Post
      You did not mention how much ram you have got. The newer the distribution the more ram you need. KDE 3.5 based like Kanotix Excalibur you could try on it with at least 256 mb ram. Usually i would suggest to have at least 512 mb ram. Win + A/V tool requires about 1 gb ram to run smoothly. Btw. you don't need to buy a licence, the key should be printed on a sticker, so you only need a xp home cd, which should be easyly to get. As sidenote: on a 1 gb ram system you could install Win7, with 32 bit usually old xp drivers also work.
      Some people say that the product key on the sticker is only for an OEM distribution of XP and if I get a new XP CD, it will expect a different sort of product key.

      The Ram is somewhere between 256 meg and just over one gig. I will have to tell you for sure tomorrow because there is a sleeping beauty in the room where it rests at the moment.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by xarzu View Post
        I would rather NOT go the illegal route and get and use a torrent version of XP. In the long run, that would be even more expensive.
        No it wouldn't. Microsoft knows they'd lose a hefty chunk of their market-share if they'd pursue people who are pirating Windows. They rather keep their monopoly and "lose" a few license-sales instead.

        More on-topic: Yeah, as Kano said, the amount of ram is pretty important (I'd say it's actually the most important factor). But since your machine is so old I guess it doesn't have very much, so I'd suggest a relatively lightweight yet easy to use distribution like Xubuntu (if you've got 256-512mb ram). If you've got even less you probably want something like Debian+LXDE, but if you're only used to Windows installing and maintaining such a installation might be a little to hard for you. Unfortunately I don't know of a beginner-friendly distribution that ships with something like LXDE or IceWM.

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        • #5
          The printed key is a standard product key. You usually don't get the OEM key (well you can retrieve it using tools - you also need a certificate). As you did not do that before just use your normal licence.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_...reinstallation

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          • #6
            i have a sony viao pcg v505ex with 512mb of ram with kanotix excalibur, but its been running kanotix since 2007 without issues. I play with ubuntu on other machines but would not change what works well for me.
            I also have win xp and all the recovery disks because i made them right after i got the pc, i have replaced the hard drive and use the old for a backup.

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            • #7
              OP, you just need to find an OEM copy of Windows XP Home (you need the same version as what the key on the laptop is for). When it comes time to enter the serial key, you type in the one that's on (the bottom of the) laptop.

              I'm looking for an OEM XP Pro for my Thinkpad. Kano says it's easy to find but that depends. Locally, I'm finding it not so easy.

              I find ebay sells these but for $100 a pop, no thanks, too expensive.

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              • #8
                If you have a license, you know the product key, but you don't have the CD, why you don't download an image? You can find many torrents.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by KDesk View Post
                  If you have a license, you know the product key, but you don't have the CD, why you don't download an image? You can find many torrents.
                  You still need to authenticate the downloaded image. Are there official checksums of WinXP iso images?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by not.sure View Post
                    You still need to authenticate the downloaded image. Are there official checksums of WinXP iso images?
                    It is not so necessary, because if you use a torrent that has many downloads, seeds and comments, sure it is free of malware.

                    I can't find checksums for XP, I found only some half-official for Windows 7 http://www.windows7news.com/2009/07/...rtm-checksums/

                    Without the official checksums the only way to be sure it to make a copy of a original CD.

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                    • #11
                      Every oem has got own xp disk which differ oembios.{bin,cat,dat,sig} + precoded options/key in winnt.sif. So it is impossible to get md5sums of those. In theory there could be official md5sums for standard home/pro xp disks, but as you could slipstream spX (and even other hotfixes) it is unlikely to find those. It does not really matter too, when a oem disk from another vendor is used then slp just does not work, but the printed key on the sticker will do. Just ask your neighbor.

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