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Free versions of Linux

I was considering putting a free version of Linux on a cheap laptop (yet to be purchased) for pretty much browsing purposes only.

Questions...

1.  What are some suggested Linux versions that are light (so they'd run on an older machine) and free?

2.  What probably should I look for in the way of RAM and hard drive space if all I really want to do is browse the web, but still be able to have a page load somewhat quickly and that will support latest browsers?

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carsRST
Asked:
carsRST
4 Solutions
 
CallandorCommented:
I recommend Ubuntu - it's very stable and up to date.  You could run it on 512MB RAM and 5GB disk space: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/SystemRequirements
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beridiusCommented:
Ubuntu is the most popular there are many more like suse you just need to find out which version of linux that you would like
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
Or Mint which has a very small footprint and like Ubuntu needs few resources
http://www.linuxmint.com/download.php
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rindiCommented:
If you want something light, then ubuntu isn't the best suggestion, nor the standard version of Mint. Light would be Lubuntu, or the Linux Mint LXDE Edition.

A really light and very nice to use Distro is Bodhi Linux. The default installation only includes what is necessary, but you can easily add things you need. It uses the Enlightenment desktop which uses only small resources but still has nice eye-candy effects. It should work fine with 256MB RAM, and the forum is very helpful if you run into issues:

http://bodhilinux.com/
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carsRSTAuthor Commented:
Thanks.  I appreciate the help.
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