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Daniel Lawson daniel@m...
Tue Apr 6 14:32:01 NZST 2004

>Also why should it not run on a 386? as in some situations, as you mention, 
>a 386 is just spot on for the job.
There are plenty of linux distrubutions that will do this. It's neither 
here nor there if Debian doesn't (I have no idea if it will or not either).

Linux is linux. It doesn't matter how its branded. It's still the same 
thing. Linux *will* run on an embedded 386 processor, and it *will* run 
on a quad 3 GHz processor or an IBM Mainframe. What you can do with 
linux running on those different platforms is another issue entirely.

If you want to run a caching proxy server on a 386 with 8 MB of ram and 
a 300 MB 3200 rpm HDD, go ahead, but it'll be faster to use no proxy at 
all unless your Internet connection is a 14k4 dialup.

If you want to run a web, email, domain and file sharing server for a 
network of 50 machines, you can use a 386 with 8 MB if you like, 
although I think you'll find it dies very shortly after the third or so 
client connects.

If you want to run a environmental monitor that sends notifications when 
the temperature or humidity goes past a certain threshold, on a 386 with 
8 MB of ram, then go ahead, it'll do fine.

If you want to run a text login terminal off the same 386, then go 
ahead. It'll do fine.

>Even if you ignore the GUI on Fedora it still needs 16M of RAM min. to 
>support a command prompt..

So don't use Fedora. What's the problem here? FC1 is a recent distro 
aimed at recent hardware. There's plenty of other distrubutions who 
cater to older hardware. Go use them. It's still linux.

>In the original thread that was the jist of what was being discussed, and I 
>am pointing out what I think is one of the major driving forces behind the 
>charge forward. And from what I have seen in replies it has confirmed my 

Certainly the support for newer hardware is a driving force, however it 
doesn't in any way limit the lower end of usable computers. What *does* 
limit the lower end of usable computers is what you want to do with them.

The original discussion wasn't actually anything to do with hardware, or 
about resource use. It was about versions of software. Resource use is 
incidental, and for the most part completly ignored. Why is that? 
Because most machines will run everything anyway, just with different 
performance. Computers are ridiculously powerful these days, and for 
most applications they are far more than is needed.

To go back to your discussion, you keep referring to servers, and yet 
bring up this 386 as an example. There's a couple of very good reasons I 
wouldn't use a 386 as a server unless I couldn't avoid it: Reliability 
and performance.   I'm more than willing to put in old hardware where 
appropriate -- and i'll run the latest Debian release on it as well, and 
it'll run just fine -- but I'm realistic about expectations. I don't 
want to keep replacing someones 486 firewall every time it dies.

This doesn't mean there aren't uses for old hardware, and it also 
doesn't mean that you can't use the old hardware as you like. So you 
can't install FC1 on a 386. Big deal. Use another distribution.

Linux is linux. It doesn't matter what name it comes under.

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