Making Slim Ubuntu Linux System

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Okay so I love Ubuntu Linux for the ease of use of it. It’s powerful enough for advanced users and easy enough for your 90 year old grandma who just barely knows how to check emails. However if your like me you may feel Ubuntu is kind of bloated. If that is the case you can build a slim Ubuntu machine that does everything you need it to do.

After I have done this quite few times I ended up making an Ubuntu Remix called Bennix. Feel free to do the same.

What you will need:

    1. A computer with the at least
    • 300 MHz x86 processor

 

  • 128 MB RAM

 

 

  • 1 GB of disk space

 

 

  • Graphics card and monitor capable of 640×480

 

 

 

  • An Ubuntu Alternate Installation Disk



  • And for the people who don’t know the obvious you will need a power outlet that has electricity in it. Make sure you test it by sticking your fingures in it (If you really do this then you shouldn’t read any further)

 

Tips:
If the computer that you install Ubuntu on doesn’t have an optical drive you can do one of the following.

  1. Make an Ubuntu USB Flash drive with Ubuntu USB Key Creator or if your using Windows you may want to try UNetBootIn
  2. Do a net boot. In order to do this your computer will need to support eitherboot. Most new computers offer this.
  3. If it has an Optical drive but you can’t boot off of it you may want to try Smart Boot Manager. Put it on floppy disk or USB or what ever. I’ve even used Grub4Dos and Grub2 to to boot it.
  4. Or you can try Super Grub Disk

When the CD starts up, select your language. I usually select English because they don’t offer a Binary option. After you’ve selected your language you will want to press F4 and select command line install. Or depending on your version it may say mininal install. After this use your arrow keys to select install system. Then press ENTER.

You may notice that the Alternate CD doesn’t use Ubuiquity and has an ugly blue screen like the Windows XP installation. This is normal. Follow the steps and finnish the installation.

Once the installation has been finnished, restart your computer and you will see some text that ask for your log in info. Enter your user name press ENTER then type you Password and press ENTER. Now that your logged in you may want to update your system. To do this issue the following commandss. Feel free to copy and paste the commands.

sudo apt-get update

then

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

After the above commands you should see alot of scrolling text. If it ask you to press Y or N then press Y. You will also need to enter your password since your using root priviledges.

Now it may be nice to have a Desktop Envirnment. Their are plenty to choose from. Depending on which one you will want you will have to issue different commands.

To install the Gnome envirnment you will want to issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install gnome-core

If you want an even lighter gnome envirnment you may want to install each part of gnome seperately.

If you want the KDE Desktop Envirment you may want to issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install kde-minimal

If you want very light weight envirnment that resembles Windows you may want to use ICEWM. You can issue the following commands to install it.

sudo aptitude install icewm iceconf icepref iceme

Note I had some problems installing with apt-get

If you want the xfce Desktop envirnment you may want to try the following commands.

sudo apt-get install xfce4

Or you may want to try Flux Box. To install Flux Box you may want to issue the following commands.

sudo aptitude install fluxbox fluxconf

Before you restart your computer you will need to install a login manager. You can use anyone you want even though they where meant for certain WM’s.

To install GDM which gnome uses you may want to issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install gdm

To install KDM which is for KDE you may want to issue the following commands

sudo apt-get install kdm

or you may want lighter Login managers such as XDM or Slim

sudo apt-get install xdm

or

sudo apt-get install slim

You can now restart your computer by issuing the following commands.

sudo reboot

When your computer restarts you will see nice GUI. However you may want to add some nice themes and screen savers. To do this you can install them depending on your WM. In the below example I’m using gnome.

sudo apt-get install gnome-themes gnome-screensaver

You may also want to install nice package manager, update manager and notifier. To this you may want issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install gnome-app-install app-install-data-commercial update-manager update-notifier

If your computer needs specail drivers the easiest way to install them is to install jockey. You can install jockey by issuing the following commands.

sudo apt-get install jockey-gtk

Now you may want sound. To get sound on your ubuntu installation you may want to issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install libasound2 alsa-utils alsa-oss

To setup your printer you may want to issue the following commands.

sudo apt-get install system-config-printer-gnome

For GUI networking program you may want to issue the following commands

sudo apt-get install network-manager-gnome

Keep in mind in order for the network manager to work you will need to disable the terminal network settings. To do this issue the following commands.

sudo nano -w /etc/network/interfaces

This will bring up nano with the following text in it.

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp

You will want to remove the last 2 lines. So it will look like the following.

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface

Now you will save it by pressing ctrl + x and then confirming with y

So now you have nice light weight system that doesn’t hog alot of resources.

2 thoughts on “Making Slim Ubuntu Linux System

  1. Heres some other programs you may find use full.

    sudo apt-get install gksu
    sudo apt-get install firefox
    sudo apt-get install thunberbird
    sudo apt-get install gdebi

    And if you want to play propriotory formats such as MP3's and MPG's you will want to install the Ubuntu restricted extras by using the following commands.

    sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras