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Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

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Wyneran
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Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#1

Post by Wyneran » Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:59 am

Hello all,

I've been an on-and-off Linux user for quite some time (say, 5+ years), though I will admit not much of an expert when it comes to the CLI. I'm not complete newbie; I have *some* experience with linux.

So, long story short: I have an Acer Aspire One A0751h netbook (32 bit Atom CPU @ 1.33ghz/2gb RAM/240gb SSD) circa 2007 vintage that I've decided I'd like to use as my "learning" machine to get "back into Linux" (since I've spent most of my time in Windows 10 for the last 3 years, and daily at my job). I wanted a lightweight, low-resource distro that I could install some pentesting tools onto, to help me with re-learning linux and also to explore pentesting (since using Kali or Parrot as a daily driver is not recommended). I wanted something that would install and work out of the box with minimal tweaking, since this laptop has the GMA500 video package that can be troublesome to get working correctly.

Therefore, after much research and some trial and error with a few distros, I settled on antix 17.1 32 bit. So far, antiX has met that goal. Here are some questions:

1) how do I disable the trackpad edge scrolling feature (annoying!)
2) how can I add some pentesting tools to my distro?
3) why are YT videos so choppy, but if I play MP4 videos from either a usb drive or the SSD they are fine (I know it's not the internet connection speed, btw)?
4) if I wanted to use a different distro that doesn't come pre-configured for the GMA500 video, how can I get that working (I assume lots of CLI work)?
5) why is it that I can run "distro a" from a live usb and it works fine, but once installed it does not? I tried Kali, LXLE, Lubuntu, Limux Mint, and a few others and they worked fine off live usb, but each had issues when I went to install to the SSD.
6) any recommendations for an alternate distro from what I'm using, if anyone thinks there is something better?

For reference, I've used LXLE 12.04.5 on one of my other old laptops (a Sony VIAO T350 1.2ghz Pentium M/1gb RAM ultrabook from 2005), and I really like that distro, but LXLE does not work out of the box on this Acer (even the graphical install is difficult due to the GMA500). I also have a Dell Latitude E6540 i7-4800Q/8gb RAM laptop running dual-boot Win10/Kali, but I have yet to mess with Kali on that machine other than to make sure it works. Eventually this will be the primary pentesting machine, but I'd like to learn some pentesting skills on the Acer first, as well as improve my overall linux skills. The Acer is small and light, and has great battery life, so it's perfect for "playing around" on the go. I also thought TinyCore was interesting, but I'm not sure if I've got the skills to get it working on this machine (works fine on the Sony) and not sure if I can get any pentesting apps on it either, since the pre-compiled apps are rather limited. Maybe if I compile everything from source???

I have interests in electronics, microcontrollers, FPGAs,, hardware hacking, pentesting, programming/coding, game development and ethical hacking, and have recently decided to start dedicating time to learning these skills, hence the multiple machines. The Dell will also be my primary development machine (hence the Win10 install - most microcontroller dev software is windows-only AFAIK).

Thanks.
Last edited by Wyneran on Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:13 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#2

Post by JayM » Fri Jun 28, 2019 7:37 am

Hello and welcome.

IMO your 32-bit netbook will never be satisfactory for your intended use. Even among netbooks this one is slow, having only a 1.33GHz CPU where most have a 1.6 or 1.66GHz. Also, I highly doubt that there's even any 32-bit pentesting software available anywhere.

If I were you I would relegate the netbook to the rôle of a backup general-purpose computer and buy a used, midrange 64-bit laptop with a multiple-core CPU from eBay, Craigslist or a similar site, the more powerful the better. I'd also put as much RAM in it as it can address unless the one you get is already at its maximum memory capacity.

The fact that your netbook struggles to play YouTube videos in a modern browser (Firefox) and with all of the Google back-end scripts on YouTube's site is an indication that it's probably not powerful enough to meet your needs. Even if there were 32-bit pentesting apps a task that might take a more powerful computer 24 hours to run might take your netbook several days. Again this is just my opinion but I highly doubt if that's the right machine for the intended job.

Then, rather than trying to convert antiX into a pentesting distro I would try out distros that were made for that purpose such as Kali, Parrot, etc.
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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#3

Post by JayM » Sat Jun 29, 2019 2:40 am

I just reinstalled antiX 17.4 on my own 32-bit netbook (after having been testing antiX 19b1) and lo and behold, there are some pentesting and forensic apps in the repository! Search with Symantic and you'll find them.
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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#4

Post by mxer » Sat Jun 29, 2019 5:12 am

AntiX is based on Debian, & Debian has the largest collection of software of any distro, so if they don't have what you want, no one will! :cool:

As you are into programming & electronics, you might like to consider Raspberry for PC, on your Atom, they have a lot of programming stuff for their ARM SOCs, & a good website with lots of info, so you might be interested in getting yourself a Raspberry Pi4B ARM board.

Worth checking out their website. https://www.raspberrypi.org/
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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#5

Post by Fibogacci » Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:16 am

mxer wrote:
Sat Jun 29, 2019 5:12 am
... so if they don't have what you want, no one will! :cool:
I wouldn't be so sure.
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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#6

Post by JayM » Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:29 am

I want to be well-to-do, young and good-looking. Oddly, I can't find those things in the repos. :cheesy:
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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#7

Post by duane » Sat Jun 29, 2019 1:25 pm

OK JayM, repeat after me.
I am not a computer.
I am not a computer.
I am not a computer.
Lenovo M92p Quad Core i5 3470 3.2Ghz

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Re: Intermediate(?) Linux user - antiX 32 bit on old laptop, looking for post-install advice

#8

Post by manyroads » Sun Jun 30, 2019 12:00 pm

JayM wrote:
Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:29 am
I want to be well-to-do, young and good-looking. Oddly, I can't find those things in the repos. :cheesy:
Shucks. I guess that explains my problems... :eek:
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