[CentOS] Best CentOS to install on *old* laptop?

Warren Young warren at etr-usa.com
Mon Mar 2 17:50:46 UTC 2009


Stephen John Smoogen wrote:
> 
> Most of the time, I find that the batteries are going 

True, but a laptop makes a good low-power server, appliance or terminal:

- Hook a Drobo to it, and suddenly it's a media server for your house. 
You just saved $200 by not having to buy a Droboshare.

- Does it have an RS-232 port?  Those are all but gone on new laptops, 
but lots of professional equipment still has them.  Install CentOS 
without the GUI and add minicom to turn it into a glorified VT-100.

- Install CentOS with X11 but without Gnome, and use it as an X terminal 
for remote *ix boxen.

- Same as above, but install VNC or the RDP client, and use it with your 
non-X aware remote boxen.

- Configure it not to sleep when the lid's closed, stick it under your 
broadband router, and set it up to accept ssh connections port-forwarded 
from the router.  Configure your other home systems to sleep, but accept 
WOL packets.  To get into one of your home systems remotely, you ssh 
into the laptop, send a WOL "ping", wait a bit for the machine to wake 
up, and ssh on to the internal machine.  This is easily scriptable so 
you can run just one command to log in.  You can thus save more energy, 
net, than not having the ssh/WOL box and keeping the big systems awake 
all the time.

Lots of things you can do with an underpowered laptop.


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