I don't actually have one, but I do have an elderly aunt who had an old
Gateway P75 whose hard disk has recently died. This has been replaced
by the cheapest thing Dell offered which of course is so much faster
than her old PC, it's just not funny.
Muggins here got lumped with procuring and installing same and having
done so, I installed assorted adware fighters, and whatever firewall
trial package was provided with it. She recently asked me about the end
of the trial package and I told her that she would have to pony up 80
EUR (and that per annum) to carry on using it and frankly, with a
Windows box, it's a necessity rather than a luxury.
And then the penny dropped. This woman uses her PC to send email, to do
a little web surfing, and to write the odd letter - nothing else, and
there's certainly no requirement for any exotic Windows only software.
So, I think I'll make her my Aunt Tilly experiment. I'm not going to
ask her to install Linux, but she is going to use it. She is a retired
secondary school teacher, so is not exactly clueless but as far as
computers are concerned she is completely clueless.
I'm more or less settled on SuSE 9.1 as the distribution, for the
simple reason that I use it in a number of places, and I have media
available. I'm open to persuasion as to a better distribution but to be
honest, there'd have to be a pretty compelling reason. After all, this
PC is going to run Mozilla (for web and email) and Open Office, and
that is it - it hardly matters what distribution I use.
A possible dark skinned person in the combustible material is hardware
- I've no idea what graphics hardware is in this box, but as it's
current Dell hardware it's entirely possible that there's no XFree
support for it. Also, the modem is very likely (no - absolutely
guaranteed) to be a Winmodem. I've no idea if it's a model for which
there is Linux support, and TBH I don't want this Linux experiement to
cost any money in the form of a new modem, though I most likely have a
real modem around somewhere which I could give her.
I'll be sure to keep you updated on her progress.
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