[blfs-support] Knowing when to ditch an old (desktop) system

Ken Moffat zarniwhoop at ntlworld.com
Wed Dec 31 17:21:17 PST 2014


On Tue, Dec 30, 2014 at 03:19:42PM -0500, Michael Shell wrote:
> 
> Another angle is the obsolescence of the *hardware* itself. Has anyone
> attempted to maintain a very latest system on older hardware, and if so,
> what was the result - increasing slowness due to ever increasing demands
> on the hardware, or is this at least partly countered by coding
> improvements? How does GTK3 fare in this regard compared to GTK2?
> 
 On this point, my first amd64 had a massive 1GB of memory (I
suspect it was still 133 MHz).  When I first managed to install a
version of almost-LFS on it (that was before cross-lfs had become a
separate project), I ran some benchmarks on it and confirmed that for
those (ssl tests, probably some ogg encoding : imagine that - using
a lossy format because disk space was limited!) it was indeed faster
than using it as i686.  By the time I got rid of it a couple of years
ago, I was thinking about moving it back to i686 because compilation
of userspace was so slow and needed so much memory : for that, I
blame each new minor version of gcc ;)

 For use as a desktop (_my_ usage, no Desktop Environments) it still
worked adequately but compilation had become beyond a joke.

 I've also built a more-featured 7.6 desktop (much of xfce) on my
atom netbook - it mostly runs ok, but compiling firefox-34.0.5 took
over 10 hours.  In general, if you are compiling then a
well-specified recent system makes things much less painful.

 OTOH, audio capabilities of modern hardware are often lacking - one
of my machines was a mac ppc64 (we all make mistakes) and networking
was not its strongpoint so I re-encoded some ogg rips to a lower
sampling rate to lessen its problems (playing music from an nfs share
while compiling often stuttered before I did that).  Similarly, I
have some low-frequency example .au files.  On my most recent
hardware, none of these are playable, only audio at 44K1 or 48K.

ĸen
-- 
Nanny Ogg usually went to bed early. After all, she was an old lady.
Sometimes she went to bed as early as 6 a.m.


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