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Old 26-09-2020, 13:42   #1
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Which Linux dist. for old Toughbook?

Problem: Given an old Toughbook laptop (CF-30, 1.66Mhz/4g/500gb/GPS/touch screen) with Win10 installed I'd like to run Linux only to run OpenCpn. Logic is I don't want Windows bloat etc as the laptop is strictly for OpenCpn use. Perhaps I'm out of date, but the last time I installed Linux on a ~PC it was a nightmare.

Question: which Linux distribution(s) might best recognize Toughbook hardware requiring a) least troubleshooting to install, where Linux recognizes the Toughbook hardware, b) would be best pared with OpenCpn.

Related details: I've got OpenPlotter running on a RPi with GPS and SDR dongles. No onboard router yet, at some point I'd like to link the RPi and the laptop.

I'm okay with wiping the Windows drive and replacing with Linux, or, I could obtain a small USB HD and boot/run Linux from the USB. If the USB option works well, perhaps I'd just keep the main hard drive dormant with Windows installed, just in case.

Thoughts?
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Old 26-09-2020, 14:08   #2
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Re: Which Linux dist. for old Toughbook?

I would try Raspberry pi desktop which is the PC version of the rpi operating system.

https://www.raspberrypi.org/download...ry-pi-desktop/

I've tried it and it works quite well on computers with limited resources and has exactly the same interface as the Rpi.

On this install the openplotter-settings application and installing opencpn through it will be a breeze.

After that connecting both devices using wifi is no problem. Connect the Laptop to the Rpi AP and set up the network connections. That's it.
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Old 26-09-2020, 14:17   #3
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Re: Which Linux dist. for old Toughbook?

Wow...exactly what I was looking for. I'll try running it off a USB-HD.

Thanks!
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Old 26-09-2020, 14:43   #4
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Re: Which Linux dist. for old Toughbook?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Singularity View Post
Problem: Given an old Toughbook laptop (CF-30, 1.66Mhz/4g/500gb/GPS/touch screen) with Win10 installed I'd like to run Linux only to run OpenCpn. Logic is I don't want Windows bloat etc as the laptop is strictly for OpenCpn use. Perhaps I'm out of date, but the last time I installed Linux on a ~PC it was a nightmare.
...
I'm okay with wiping the Windows drive and replacing with Linux, or, I could obtain a small USB HD and boot/run Linux from the USB. If the USB option works well, perhaps I'd just keep the main hard drive dormant with Windows installed, just in case.

Thoughts?
That toughbook seems a bit underpowered for Windows 10... how has it been running?

It's much easier these days to install Linux distros, and what's the coolest of all is that it's so easy to just try a distro, by creating a bootable USB memory stick and booting your CF-30 on it. There are even Linux distros intended for "marine" use which might already have most of your current marine apps installed, which at least makes it easier to test the distro for your intended use.
I put Navigatrix and some charts on a bootable 8GB SD card, and have been using it intermittently on some old ASUS eee netbooks, but I haven't touched any of that for nearly 2 years. With a small boat, we mainly daysail, and my beloved gave me a Garmin handheld GPS/map a couple of years ago and that's been more than adequate for now.

I've been going for the Ubuntu LTS releases when I just want to put vanilla desktop Linux on an old laptop.

Someone with a Toughbook CF-30 will hopefully see your post and give you the definitive answer. Anyway, as an approach I would do the research and ask around just like you're doing, make a shortlist, and try them on bootable USB sticks. Then you can install if you wish, and if there's enough room on the harddrive (... should be!), you could install the chosen Linux distro as a dual boot setup, so you won't lose the Win 10.
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