I have finally got Linux installed on the old laptop, and am now able to blog from anywhere in the house – at the moment, I am comfortably ensconced on the sofa.
Having all but given up on the idea, after having so many failures, I discovered Puppy Linux. This runs on just 94 Meg of RAM, making it ideal for my machine with its 128 megs. Of course, there are other small-footprint distros; but for me they proved pretty useless, since in no case had anybody bothered to translate the installation menus from the original Geek. Happily, this is not so with Puppy, which deserves some sort of Plain English award for the clarity of its installation instructions and Help menus. Thus I was able to get everything installed and running in about an hour. And my laptop fairly zips along now; using it with WinXP was a pain – every operation took ages. Using Puppy, however, there’s no great difference in speed between this laptop and the desktop machine. It’s fractionally slower loading webpages, but that’s all I’ve noticed so far.
I’ve not found out how to network the laptop with my Windows desktop and printer; it will pick up and display the Shared Folder on next door’s PC (which shares my wireless network) but won’t recognise my PC. But I’m sure that’s something I’ll work out eventually. For the time being I’m just pleased to be able to surf, email and blog from the comfort and warmth of my sofa!