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Operating System For Junker Pc's


hsncorrosion
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I'm going to get a ton of old junk pc's  mostly p2 with a 20gb hard drive, some stuff older than that.

I need an operating system, micro$haft is way to $expensive$ so I'm going with linux but......

I need to pre-install software into it, for example openoffice.org assualt cube and firefox to name a few.

I also need it to look similar to windows 98 xp or vista as the people in the area I would sell them to have not even heard of linux so using it would be complicated for them.....

Someone told me puppy linux would work as it has windows skins but that still leaves me with the problem of pre-installing software.

Can you guys help me with this?

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I'm going to get a ton of old junk pc's  mostly p2 with a 20gb hard drive, some stuff older than that.

I need an operating system, micro$haft is way to $expensive$ so I'm going with linux but......

I need to pre-install software into it, for example openoffice.org assualt cube and firefox to name a few.

I also need it to look similar to windows 98 xp or vista as the people in the area I would sell them to have not even heard of linux so using it would be complicated for them.....

Someone told me puppy linux would work as it has windows skins but that still leaves me with the problem of pre-installing software.

Can you guys help me with this?

Slax possibly?

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ok, now how would I go about making an install cd that will install it with the applications I choose already on the system? As well as my own default wallpaper and startup message, for example DSLinux has where it will open a web browser on the first boot or until you tell it not to run and displays a welcoming .html file.

I want the final product to be I get an old pc thow in some spare parts toss in the cd and install it then it be ready to go, without having to spend the extra time to install all the extra stuff.

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ok, now how would I go about making an install cd that will install it with the applications I choose already on the system? As well as my own default wallpaper and startup message, for example DSLinux has where it will open a web browser on the first boot or until you tell it not to run and displays a welcoming .html file.

I want the final product to be I get an old pc thow in some spare parts toss in the cd and install it then it be ready to go, without having to spend the extra time to install all the extra stuff.

http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/

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I am probally the least qualified person to comment here, but most Linux Disto's I have played with have been 'Windows 98-ish' and most have run on low spec P3 / Athlon systems, so just pick one and go (would stick to one of the big boy disto's personally) as far as building a 'slip-stream' cd goes, I'd build one system and then ghost it to all the others (provided Linux supports this)

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FreeBSD + Fluxbox ftw. Just recompile the lot from src with a makefile tweaked for your hardware, remove everything from your kernel that isn't needed and you should be kosher.

If you need to clone the disks, using dd its as simple as "dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb" and waiting.

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ok, now how would I go about making an install cd that will install it with the applications I choose already on the system? As well as my own default wallpaper and startup message, for example DSLinux has where it will open a web browser on the first boot or until you tell it not to run and displays a welcoming .html file.

I want the final product to be I get an old pc thow in some spare parts toss in the cd and install it then it be ready to go, without having to spend the extra time to install all the extra stuff.

Think _hard_ about what you want to do with all that hardware. I mean, sure, you could make a bunch of desktop machines, none of which you'll use because they're slow as dirt. So why not make a cluster out of them? Or assign one to be a printer server and the other as DNS and yet another dedicated to file sharing? That would allow them to be headless, which is a plus as you don't want to have a ton of monitors keeping the place warm, or waste valuable system resources on a windowing environment you won't need 99% of the time.

Don't be a lazy punk and put a full Linux install on each. Put some time into figuring out what each box will do, and optimize that box for that task. It'll let you get the most out of it, which especially with old kit like this will make all the difference.

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I plan to sell them as dirt cheap pc's

They need to look some what like windows as the people in my community have never even heard of it none the less able to use it

  1) They're PIIs, dirt cheap isn't the word. Pentium 3s and 4s are dirt cheap, PIIs are giveaways.

1a) People might not know computers but you'd be surprised how often they know if you're trying to rip them off.

  2) Is it seriously worth the effort? Really?

  3) If these people don't know Linux then I really wouldn't bother, otherwise they'll either bring them back saying they're broken or they'll be back every 5 minutes asking for tech support. They won't want to pay you for this because they'll assume it's just broken.

  4) It doesn't have Windows? How does it run my Office 95 disc? Why doesn't it have Windows? Where's the Start menu? What's this thing on here? Why does it look all weird?

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