Best Linux distributions for old computers


Best Linux distributions for old computers

There are hundreds of Linux distributions out there, but most have hardware requirements that are above and beyond what old computers and laptops have in them. So, what to do to breathe new life into old computers?  Older hardware usually does not have the specifications that you would need to run a new OS, but thanks to Linux you can breathe new life into your old machine. Here are five of the best distributions that I found for old hardware.


Lubuntu screen shot

Lubuntu is based on Ubuntu and is one of the official distributions of Ubuntu. Lubuntu uses LXQt interface by default for its GUI.  This lightweight GUI is fast and modern-looking. Lubuntu gives you access to all of the repositories that Ubuntu has.

Linux Lite


One of the nice things about Linux Lite is that it comes ready out of the box with Firefox, Thunderbird, GIMP, and other familiar programs.  This distribution advertises itself as a Windows transition to Linux.

Peppermint OS

peppermint os

Peppermint OS is based on Debian Bullseye and uses the XFCE desktop. Peppermint has migrated into its own continuous delivery OS based on the Debian Bullseye repositories.

Bodhi Linux

Bodhi Linux

Bodhi Linux is a lightweight Linux distribution based on Ubuntu that uses an Enlightenment DR17-based fork called Moksha window manager. The philosophy for the distribution is to provide a minimal base system so that users can populate it with the software they want.

Puppy Linux

puppy linux

Puppy Linux is not a single Linux distribution like Debian. Puppy Linux is also not a Linux distribution with multiple flavors, like Ubuntu (with its variants of Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, etc) though it also comes in different flavors.


There are a lot of other distributions that you can consider when trying to update older hardware. Check Distro Watch and use the drop-down to find more on other distributions that support older computers and laptops.  I have a couple of old laptops that I recently put new software on and they work well.

Try using a live DVD of the ones you like to try them out and choose the one that best suits your needs.

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