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Introducing PULP - 125 MB Puplet for older hardware
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Thu 22 Oct 2009, 04:31    Post subject:  

OK- the xorg- toshiba issue:
not sure it works on your particular toshiba:
I selected xorg, because the xvesa only gave me a completely messed up screen (looked a bit like a tv with no antenna cable plugged in- weird).
The auto detection loaded the trident driver which I manually changed to vesa in teh xorg.config. (select 'Test' in xorgwizard, quit the test and select 'edit xorg.config manually')

So I actually run xorg with the vesa driver- don't ask me why I tried that out in the first place - but it worked for one of my toshibas.

The other toshiba I got worked with xvesa right away, so YMMV.

As I said before: Textmaker is not free software, so it will not be in PULP but you can of course allways install it afterwards if you choose to. It's all about choice.

Quote:
Your Firepup runs the Firefox add-on and bibliographic tool "Zotero". Don't know why I've not been able to get the two to gel in previous attempts in other puplets, but this rates. Seriously useful! (I didn't know Firepup was ttuuxx's - he's worked his magic again)

The firefox that is in PULPv003 is a firefox 2.something compiled with gtk 1.2.
Firepup is firefox 1.5 compiled with recent security updates by Tuuxxxx.
Since the GTK 1.2 version gave a more consistent look with all the other GTK 1.2 apps and felt a bit faster (not much though)- I stuck with it.
Nevertheless, Firepup is a nice piece of work.

Spreadsheet:
I probably will leave it out completely in the next version. Probably Siag will stay as a stopgap, but as I said before, it's rather useless nowadays.
Not yet sure about it all.
If someone finds a pet for a GTK 1.2 gnumeric I'll use that with pleasure.

It's funny how the other light and small distros tweak here and there, use this or that window manager just to shave off a few kB of ram usage and whatnot.
Although PULP also has a lot of background processes turned off etc., I think the single, most prominent performance gain in PULP came from throwing gtk 2.0 over board and sticking with GTK 1.2 apps. GTKedit is up and runnung in one second vs. leafpad opening in about 5 seconds on my Pentium II. Rox takes forever to get going (when its not backgrounded and eating up 6 MB RAM all the time!!!), emelfm takes just under a second to start.
When you use a "proper" computer (say a Pentium IV with about 2 GHz- plenty of RAM), the texteditor in PULP is alive when you release the mouse button.

I really think of rolling out a new version of PULP sooner. Now that I actually have users... this motivates a lot. Please keep the suggestions for improvement coming. Wink
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Thu 22 Oct 2009, 04:59    Post subject:  

Just did a bit of googling, it seems that your toshiba has a Chips & Technologies CT-65550 graphics chip. It is supported in xorg by the 'chips' driver.

With 16 MB of RAM you need a swap partition before you can boot and install (and even then I'm not sure Puppy/PULP will run).
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Puppyt

Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 568
Location: Gatton, Queensland

PostPosted: Thu 22 Oct 2009, 08:35    Post subject:
Subject description: Loram low-ram Toshiba laptops for the Pulp mill
 

Cheers zenfunk - thanks for the very detailed response! I'll just rattle these off so you know that I haven't dropped out of your loop..

zenfunk wrote:
OK- the xorg- toshiba issue:
not sure it works on your particular toshiba:
I selected xorg, because the xvesa only gave me a completely messed up screen (looked a bit like a tv with no antenna cable plugged in- weird).

Thanks for this and the descriptions on the CT chip you outline in your next email. I'm just about to give the "brain swapping" procedure another try, by implanting a USB-caddied installation from my main computer (a "proper" one in ref to your comment below:- PIV 2.4/3.6GHz overclocked, 1.7GB DDR2 RAM) - this time including the new xorg.conf file I've cobbled together specifically for the 430CDS. If it works I'll post it on a separate thread - there must be at least 50 threads on the difficulties of getting Puppy operational with earlier Toshiba laptops. It's unfortunately a well-travelled path of despair... particularly in regard to the video configuration. Intuitively you reach for for the Xvesa option for RAM-deprived computers, but that just doesn't work for many Toshiba laptops...

zenfunk wrote:
The auto detection loaded the trident driver which I manually changed to vesa in the xorg.config. (select 'Test' in xorgwizard, quit the test and select 'edit xorg.config manually')
...So I actually run xorg with the vesa driver- don't ask me why I tried that out in the first place - but it worked for one of my toshibas.

Good Tip - didn't see that one. My main grief might be that xwin over-writes the user's Xorg selection - BarryK has provided the workaround for this, and if my non-standard xorg.conf fails I'll be heading for this and that next

zenfunk wrote:

As I said before: Textmaker is not free software, so it will not be in PULP but you can of course allways install it afterwards if you choose to. It's all about choice.

You're absolutely correct - just a forlorn hope that such software companies might 'release' their older products to license-free (if not open-source) but it is unlikely - I just wasn't sure whether the relationship between Puppy Linux and SoftMaker might have developed since the .pet was first permitted. I also understand the sensitivities involved with including "abandonware" into the mix. And as to choice, I very well may purchase SoftMakers '08 office suite as it has better compatibility with the M$ versions all my colleagues use, than does OO etc.

zenfunk wrote:

When you use a "proper" computer (say a Pentium IV with about 2 GHz- plenty of RAM)...

OOooooo harsh!

zenfunk wrote:

I really think of rolling out a new version of PULP sooner. Now that I actually have users... this motivates a lot. Please keep the suggestions for improvement coming. Wink

How about a Retro version, for us with albatross-looking laptops tied round our necks? Does seem to be a bit of a void in the Puppy arsenal for hardware with less than 128 (let alone 64 and my improper project of 16) Mb RAM. Why should SliTaz-lite, TinyCore, Kantonix, LuitLinux and DeLi have all the glory in that realm? If the Pulp base and tweaks can run satisfactorily with those overhead requirements, surely it would provide a solid foundation for running practically any application that the user chooses to add on later, in a better-equipped computer. I'm certainly not serious that Pulp should have that as its future focus - I'm just getting frustrated that I can't find any puplet to swim with the other Linux's at the shallow end of the pool...
Loved your online support tutorials too, by the way. Very helpful in getting up to speed with emelfm, but I am rapidly preferring it over Rox which I never quite took to.

Will let you know whether it gets off the ground with 16 (and a swap of 256), or crashes in a... well, crashes in a non-Pulp-like amorphous mess,
Cheers!
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Thu 22 Oct 2009, 15:37    Post subject:  

Quote:
How about a Retro version, for us with albatross-looking laptops tied round our necks? Does seem to be a bit of a void in the Puppy arsenal for hardware with less than 128 (let alone 64 and my improper project of 16) Mb RAM. Why should SliTaz-lite, TinyCore, Kantonix, LuitLinux and DeLi have all the glory in that realm?
Well from what I can say, PULP runs well inside 64 MB RAM. Give it 256 MB swap (which is only used after surfing with firefox for a while BTW) and it'll be very happy. DeLi- probably the most thought out distro for low end PCs - recently bumped up their minimal system requirements from 16 MB to 32 MB RAM.
Quote:
If the Pulp base and tweaks can run satisfactorily with those overhead requirements, surely it would provide a solid foundation for running practically any application that the user chooses to add on later, in a better-equipped computer. I'm certainly not serious that Pulp should have that as its future focus - I'm just getting frustrated that I can't find any puplet to swim with the other Linux's at the shallow end of the pool...
PULP IS Puppy 4.1.2 under the hood. The changes are stuff like leaving out Blinky or the freemmemaplet This are the two programs in the taskbar showing network activity and how much space is left on your personal storage file. So you see, it actually was quite simple to pull off. The rest was polishing the surface Wink . The mayor speed gains where found in using fast apps. Unfortunately the fastest apps are from the Pentium I era- nothing you would call 'up to date'. However, I found them very adequate for most of my daily needs. GTKedit is fine for editing the occational config file. If you need unicode support and standard compliance you better use leafpad. Which if I remember correctly is still there- just type leafpad in a console. Rox is too BTW.
Where I would have lost too much 'ease of use', I kept the modern but slow puppy tools from stock Puppy. On example is Pmount. You use it only once in a while, and although it is rather slow to start, it's still faster than mounting your thumbdrives on the console (at least for me..).
Using modern apps in PULP makes no sense because you would give up almost all the speed that is gained by not using them in the first place. If you want them, go with whatever is the newest official Puppy version.
Quote:
Loved your online support tutorials too, by the way. Very helpful in getting up to speed with emelfm, but I am rapidly preferring it over Rox which I never quite took to.
Glad you liked it.
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Puppyt

Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 568
Location: Gatton, Queensland

PostPosted: Mon 26 Oct 2009, 10:15    Post subject: Pulp on 16 Mb RAM  

zenfunk -

a hearty thankyou - I've got Pulp 0.03 running on that 16 Mb lappie!
Yaaaay...

now it's going to feel especially good using it as a frisbee.

Only kidding. I've just got to do some minor Xorg tweaks, install a coupla flash games, and let it loose on the kids. I've posted a 'how to' just now where your puplet has star billing.

Thanks!
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Wed 28 Oct 2009, 14:34    Post subject:  

Hey Puppyt,
glad it worked Smile .

Happy hacking,
Christian
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mrreality13

Joined: 03 Oct 2008
Posts: 95
Location: arlington texas

PostPosted: Sat 31 Oct 2009, 17:40    Post subject:  

Just a lil update-
Still going strong-I installed the vlc from here
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?search_id=249359849&t=31890
and streamtuner from here
http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?search_id=1931091853&t=33571
with these running htop shows
19-24% cpu// with only 19/96 megs ram used Shocked
~~
and using vlc to watch shoutcast tv it shows
68-76(ish)% cpu with 28/96 megs ram Very Happy

Laughing keep up the good work
my only issue seems to be Toshiba related -i have to load the audio driver at every boot(minor annoyance)
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Sun 01 Nov 2009, 06:06    Post subject:  

Concerning the audio driver, it might be good to make a seperate thread to get the attention of a broader audience. I'm not sure much people watch this thread.

Cheers,
Christian
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clarf


Joined: 13 Jun 2007
Posts: 612
Location: The old Lone Wolf

PostPosted: Tue 22 Dec 2009, 22:50    Post subject:  

zenfunk,

If you keep GTK2 in PULP you could use emelFM2, It's the same implementation from emelFM but using GTK. It looks better and has more features.
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Wed 23 Dec 2009, 03:26    Post subject:  

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll try it out, but have my doubts it will be as fast on the startup than the GTK 1.2 emelfm.
Try PULP on a 300 MHz machine- emelfm is really fast.

In fact I'm trying to get rid of as many GTK2 apps as possible, they are just too slow - LOL.
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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Sat 16 Jan 2010, 04:38    Post subject:  

OK, I made some new improvements, so that a new version is justified. Having used Puppy as a solid base and being much more confident in remastering stuff I think a version bump to version 0.1 is warrantable.
The next release will even have a codename LOL:
"fruitshake"- Wink .

The issues to be addressed in "fruitshake":

PULP will get an email programm.
Something like slypheed GTK1 should be sufficient. Also I don't have my email on my PULP computers I understand that people need email clients.

Office:
As one user found out Siag office has issues with fonts, also, handling of modern document formats is pretty bad. It will be replaced by an old version of Abiword. I probably will keep the Siag spreadsheet program, since I haven't found a good substitute in GTK 1.2 (old gnumeric anyone?).

Picture viewer:
I don't like the one used in PULP anymore, it doesn't have full screen. Will try out danpei and others, as always input from users is very welcome, remember that I focus on xlib or GTK 1.2 apps.

Emelfm will get a lot more filetypes, so usage is even easier.

Next thing I have in mind might sound a bit strange for PULP 0.1, but I decided to inject some BLING Shocked .
Also PULP was pretty fast, you can't escape the fact that it also was ugly as hell.

For the next release I'll try to get it to look a bit like OSX (kind of...)


OK, since you stopped laughing now, I'll explain myself: Almost all is done with some new icons for the taskbar and a more or less clever jwm configuration. Also, I'll use a newer version of jwm. The rounded window corners are just beautiful.
All this makes the RAM usage of JWM go up about 500 KB which is very moderate IMHO. What do you think? Of course, if you change back the configfiles all will be back to the older setup and only a tiny bit more RAM usage, due to the newer version of JWM.

I even found different GTK 1.2 engines and made/ downloaded some themes that don't suck. Some even look better than GTK2, and I kid you not.
If you want really polished applications- you can have them now. Unfortunately, as everything, this comes at a hefty price- loss of speed. Some GTK engines are worse than others, but generally the more beautiful the themes are, the slower they get. My Pentium2 handles some of the prettier ones quite well though.
If your machine can't handle it, then just go with the old themes and all is back to normal.

What do you think about the canges planned, anny issues not adressed? Your input is appreciated.

Cheers, Christian
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sullysat


Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 364
Location: San Antonio, TX

PostPosted: Sat 16 Jan 2010, 10:36    Post subject:  

Christian,

This is really good news. I, for one, appreciate your dedication to this project.

It sounds like you're talking about using the old Abiword that ttuuxxx reworked. That should run very well. Another option might be Ted, which I've used before, but you'll still be stuck with rtf only and unable to open doc files.

Siag is the only spreadsheet I've been able to find that would fit your parameters, unless someone (ttuuxxx maybe?) has reworked gnumeric in the same way he reworked abiword.

Having a little bling is not a bad thing, but cpu/memory overhead is a critical issue (at least for the projects I'm looking at PULP for). Then again, as long as its easy to disable those things, its all good. My only issue is the solid black desktop. How would I change that to something like a dark blue or green or something?

Awesome job, again. Thanks!
Sully

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zenfunk

Joined: 18 Mar 2009
Posts: 222

PostPosted: Sun 17 Jan 2010, 08:25    Post subject:  

Quote:
It sounds like you're talking about using the old Abiword that ttuuxxx reworked. That should run very well. Another option might be Ted, which I've used before, but you'll still be stuck with rtf only and unable to open doc files.

I know Ted, and as you already mentioned it is rtf only.
And yes, I'll use tuxxes abiword. which is basically an early version that still happens to use GTK 1.2.
Quote:

Siag is the only spreadsheet I've been able to find that would fit your parameters, unless someone (ttuuxxx maybe?) has reworked gnumeric in the same way he reworked abiword.

I just have to find an early GTK 1.2 gnumeric version. So far my search even for the source cod, has been rather fruitless. We'll see...

Quote:
Having a little bling is not a bad thing, but cpu/memory overhead is a critical issue (at least for the projects I'm looking at PULP for). Then again, as long as its easy to disable those things, its all good. My only issue is the solid black desktop. How would I change that to something like a dark blue or green or something?


Disabling of the GTK themes works graphically via theme selector.
the other stuff involves renaming and editing config files. My programming abillities are near nil, so it has to be this way- sorry. I'll write some tutorials on how to change everything.

I wrote sometihing here on changing the background color:


http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=353153#353153


Thanks for your input,
Christian
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recycler


Joined: 25 Jul 2007
Posts: 122
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Tue 09 Feb 2010, 06:25    Post subject: pulp
Subject description: excellent
 

Hi, good to see that Pulp development is continuing. I managed to download Pulp from a rapidshare link (wordpress with pwget kept restarting after 6mb of the download) and am impressed by the concept and speed at which it runs. I coordinate a re-use project for older computers and personally have brought a couple of older laptops at auction recently to run puppy on. I spent a frustating time with a 200mhz Toshiba with 32mb ram - mainly graphics problems. Will have to try Pulp on it at some point. Will definitely be doing an install to my 300mhz toshiba portege (3110CT) which runs puppy 4.3.1 ok but is a bit slow. (BTW version 4.0 of puppy onwards included a toshiba laptop fix which can be manually added on to older puppy verisons.)

Looking forward to an updated version of pulp. My main concern was the lack of any backdrop ... win 98 on the 32mb machine runs well playing mp3s and can handle changing the backdrops with faststone viewer ... so it must be possible for linux to do something similar.

I agree with you that with 256 mb or more the latest official puppy release is your best bet. I have tried a lot of puppy versions (especially appreciating those from Ttuuxxx) but I have always come back to installing VLC, Mplayer and now Google Chrome on top of the latest puppy release.

Writing this on a very responsive Satellite Pro 4300 with 256 mb ram and 600 mhz processor - Puppy 4.3.1. Adding wine makes no noticible difference to the speed and I like Thunderbird as my email client.

Thanks for your work on Puppy!
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Colonel Panic


Joined: 16 Sep 2006
Posts: 1521

PostPosted: Tue 09 Feb 2010, 06:57    Post subject:  

I agree Siag is disappointing, I've used it (or tried to) in Vector Light but eventually gave up and installed Open Office.

Just a thought here; Deli Linux is another Linux distro aimed at old computers, and they managed to use both Abiword and Firefox in their previous release (7.1 Big). Maybe a look at their package list would be helpful here?

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