On Mon, Jan 2, 2017 at 12:41 PM, Rugxulo <rugx...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 1, 2017 at 8:52 PM, dmccunney <dennis.mccun...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Sun, Jan 1, 2017 at 8:56 PM, Thomas Mueller <mueller6...@twc.com> wrote:
>> My old notebook was set to multiboot, with Win2K Pro, a couple of
>> flavors of Linux, and FreeDOS on separate HD partitions.
> Do you ever watch YouTube? I found a guy recently (Druaga1) who made
> various videos about (re)installing various Windows on old machines,
> especially regarding him also putting in SSD drives (etc.) to see if
> it increases speed.

I do watch YouTube, but not for stuff like this.  I can *read* a lot
faster than I can *watch*, and I don't need the visual aids if I have
decent written instructions.

> In particular, here's "Installing Windows 2000 on an SD Card":
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-hDOiI0-6s

I have Win10 and Ubuntu installed on an SSD on my desktop, and it
speeds things up a treat.

I could install Win2K to SSD, but there's no point.

The ancient notebook came to me with WinXP SP2 installed.  It had a
whopping 265MB RAM, and the Crusoe CPU grabbed 16MB off the top for
code morphing.  XP wants 512MB RAM to *think* about performing.  The
machine as I got it took 8 minutes to simply boot, and a lot more to
do anything.

I reformatted and re-partitioned the drive, installing Win2K on an
NTFS slice, Ubuntu and Puppy Linux on ext4 slices, and FreeDOS on a
FAT32 slice.  Win2K actually runs more or less acceptably in that
little RAM, especially when everything that can be removed from
Startup is.  Ubuntu and Puppy behaved reasonably.  FreeDOS flew.

A roadblock was a limitation to IDE4 for the HD.  This was a BIOS
restriction.  I doubted installing an SSD would provide the sort of
performance boost it might otherwise, and in any case, the machine was
purely a test bed to see what performance I could wring out of it
*without* throwing money at it.  That meant no new hardware.

I had fun tweaking, configuring, and learning, but had no actual
regular job for the machine to do.  When I'd taken it as far as I
could, I put it on a shelf.

>> IIRC, I formatted the FreeDOS partition FAT32.  But getting FreeDOS to *boot*
>> from a grub2 menu was a challenge, and I had to do a lot of fiddling
>> before it worked.  I never did figure out just which fiddle did the
>> trick.  Then an unrelated problem forced me to wipe and reinstall 2K
>> and redo multi-boot under grub2.  I got Windows and Linux booting
>> again, but never could get FreeDOS back.
>> I haven't even booted the machine in a year or more.
> Would ms-sys ( http://ms-sys.sourceforge.net/ ) help? Dunno!

I don't know either, but frankly don't care.  See above about test bed.

> It's times like that which suggest reformatting / reinstalling. If
> you're not using it anyways (assuming you double-check and backup any
> semi-important files), you may as well fix it.

It simply isn't worth the time and effort involved.  Actually work all
got done elsewhere.  Nothing on the machine would be lost if it went

But I don't have anything to do with the machine if I *did* fix it.
Without a plausible use case, why bother?  I have too many other
things to do with the time it would take.

> The "good" (ha!) thing about Linux is that it becomes obsolete fairly
> quickly, so reinstalling is usually an improvement.

Depends.  I had to reinstall Ubuntu, when a version upgrade failed.
The last step in the upgrade was installing a new kernel.  The new
kernel needed PAE support.  The old box didn't have it.  KErnel
installation failed, and that caused a cascade failure on reboot.  I
wound up wiping, reformatting, and reinstalling Ubuntu from scratch on
its slice, then stopping carefully just *before* the update that
caused the problems.

I don't use the machine anymore, so it no longer matters.

> I had a USB jump drive with antiX Mepis Linux (13.2? circa 2013),
> which was fairly interesting, useful, and quite speedy. Honestly, I
> was morbidly curious how well it would work since they claimed it
> worked on PIII-class machines (aka, obsolete), although I don't have
> that need. But the included Firefox was old (various websites, e.g.
> Google stuff, complained), and it had some other things that were old
> (I forget, honestly). Long story short, I just reinstalled to a newer
> version (16.1?) about a week ago, which brings Firefox ESR, newer
> kernel, and some other goodies.

Browsing was problematic on the old notebook.  Win2K was limited to IE
6 if you ran IE.  Firefox was simply too big and resource hungry under
Win2K or Linux.  It would take something like 45 seconds to load, and
was perceptibly sluggish when up.  Chrome and Opera invoked faster,
but I don't really care for either.  In general, I simply didn't
browse from that machine.

> (And it [still] has DOSBox pre-installed, woot!)

I have a port of DOSBox on my Android tablet, with several old DOS
apps up and running under it.

>>> My computer hardware no longer has any floppy capability.
>> Nor most of mine, but that's why a USB floppy drive is a useful accessory.
> In this day and age, we need to backup everything, or heavily rely on
> the ever-present network for exchanging files. Relying on static media
> is still a valid option, but there is no single ultra-reliable source,
> so it's best not to keep too many eggs in one basket. Dare I be naive
> and state the obvious? "Free" software is easier to acquire / backup /
> (re)install than constantly worrying about proprietary muck. It's not
> all doom and gloom, but the simpler the better.

By preference, if there *is* a decent open source application for what
I need to do, it's what I use.

But the stuff I'm concerned about isn't *programs*, it's *data*.  I
have copies of the distribution files for everything I run, so can
replace it without going online for the most part.  Data gets backed
up various ways.  Some of it in in the cloud.  Some of it is on local
media.  And I don't store an enormous amount of data in any case.

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