Minimal support for PC with 64 MB of RAM

Registered by Florent on 2008-06-07

Some old computers have less than 256 MB of RAM, sometimes as low as 64 MB.
These computers may be recycled with a fresh Ubuntu install.
They can be used for internet/e-mail/game station for children.
Ubuntu should give minimal support for such use cases, even if the official Ubuntu distribution targets computers with more than 256 MB.

According to the official ubuntu documentation, it should even install on 32MB !!! (as of 2008-06-07)
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/LowMemorySystems

Blueprint information

Status:
Not started
Approver:
None
Priority:
Undefined
Drafter:
None
Direction:
Needs approval
Assignee:
None
Definition:
New
Series goal:
None
Implementation:
Unknown
Milestone target:
None

Whiteboard

Schools and other associations are collecting old hardware for their simple needs.
These computers have less than 256 MB of RAM, sometimes as low as 64 MB.
They run some old operating system as Windows 98 or similar.
Such obsolete OS are unsupported, and they have poor support for USB devices, etc...
Ubuntu is a good GNU/Linux choice because it is easier to deploy and has many packages available.

I've installed Xubuntu 7.10 and 8.04 successfully on these systems.
But it was not a breeze. I encounter some bugs (see bugs linked) and i've found little support on which package to remove and how.

Some other blueprints for low memory systems:

Warn a user that it is a silly idea to try the LiveCD with an old computer.
https://blueprints.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+spec/warn-on-low-memory-install

Remove unneeded packages and services.
https://blueprints.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+spec/removing-unneeded-services

(?)

Work Items

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