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Month: February 2012

Re: [trinity-devel] Poll

From: Darrell Anderson <humanreadable@...>
Date: Sun, 12 Feb 2012 13:43:53 -0800 (PST)
> I remember running KDE3 on "old" hardware, e.g. 256MB RAM
> and a 1ghz CPU. I've heard people say it works fine on 128MB
> RAM and 700mhz if you run a minimal install. I doubt many
> people would be using such hardware, but it's definitely
> possible and needs consideration.

I have used KDE3 on my PI (with a 400 MHZ K6-III+) and PII machines. KDE3 is usable but requires serious patience. Likewise Trinity. On the other hand, NT4 is installed on both machines and run very fast. The PI has 256 MB RAM and the PII 448 MB.

There is a point of diminishing returns with tweaking the code base for older hardware. On the other hand, if people run LXDE or Xfce on such hardware then there will be unavoidable comparisons. Even if we draw a line with older hardware, I believe we should focus attention on improving performance.

Tim mentioned in a previous thread something called tdeinit_phase1 that eventually will improve the Trinity start time. That's good news. :)

> My best suggestion (this will probably take several
> releases) is to see how much the code can be trimmed without
> removing functionality, possibly separate packages further
> for a sort of "old computer" install -- for example (though
> I can't say for sure, I personally never checked, don't take
> my word for it unless one of the devs can confirm), some of
> the libs from tdelibs probably wouldn't be needed for an
> absolute barebones system. It may also be good to try to
> separate functionality where possible.

There probably are places we can trim code. For example, do we want to continue supporting Cervisia, which is a KDE specific wrapper to CVS? I don't know.

Your comments run close to what I proposed a while ago: Trinity Light. The focus there is primarily knowledge about build issues. People using older hardware probably would not install tdesdk let alone build the package. Trinity Light likely would not include that package or at most, only as an optional package.

Older hardware more than likely are standalone home or small-office machines. If we had a wiki page addressing such build issues we could offer a Trinity Light without sacrificing developer time toward tweaking code. All we need is information and then let packagers handle the details. Trinity Light is not something we support officially. That is, we don't provide the packages, we provide the information needed to build Trinity Light. We probably post to our web site that the basic Trinity installation runs best with hardware of PIII or faster and 512 MB RAM. For people wanting a lighter version we refer them to the build instructions at the wiki.

The wiki page would address which build options could be removed and why. For example, building tdepim without sasl support builds a leaner package and theoretically faster KMail, but probably is a bad idea because that mechanism is how secure email logins are handled.

My PI and PII qualify as old hardware and would serve as great test environments for running Trinity Light. :)