When I started using Linux I did not know how successful a changeover to it could be. I set up a new computer at the beginning of this year to have Windows 10 on and deemed it worthwhile to have a PC in a space wasting tower case with new hardware to run Windows 10 on because I expected to keep using Windows 10 a lot.
Now it’s nearly a year later and I hardly use Windows 10 at all. The most I need to use it for is printing, scanning and downloading photos from my cameras and using IrfanView to edit the camera’s images. This is not something I will even turn the computer on once a week for these days. Until very recently I thought I would still need it for graphics editing but having learned Gimp on my Debian desktop in the last month I won’t need to use Paint.net at all. I still have some documents I edit in Word but that doesn’t need much resources.
So as I have an old slow AMD E350 mini-ITX in a small chassis available I have decided this will be my Windows 10 computer, and the Home edition (which I am buying a license for) will serve just fine for this purpose. Even though everyone knows MS just forces updates to Windows 10 on you at the drop of a hat, the testing on this older computer shows it will run 10 and the display will work well. I don’t need much hardware support for it except for the screen and USB ports, and with the screen I have connected to, the default Windows drivers work well enough. It has 8 USB ports which should be enough as the screen it connects to has another 4 port hub on it. The tower has had a lot of extra USB ports added by me (I think there are 4-6 on the back of the motherboard and a USB 4 port card and a couple of 2 port brackets to connect to the motherboard connectors as well as the two on the front panel and a 2 port USB hub on the monitor) and I don’t expect to have such a need of these ports as has been the case when it was used with Windows. There were three or four camera/phone USB cables connected and I don’t know if I will keep these all plugged in at once as I have with the tower which is less accessible.
This means I can reclaim that nearly new tower computer for Debian and that’s what I working on at the moment. I should get the Windows 10 license I have ordered in a day or two and then I can start setting up the E350 on Windows 10 with the stuff it needs. The tower is going to be a lot better running Debian 10 with a lot of stuff because it has an Intel graphics chipset instead of an older Radeon chipset that there aren’t any drivers for any more (either in Windows or Linux) that redraws the screen really slowly. The tower also has room to add more disks in future (it already has two inside) and a removable drive bay like all my computers. There won’t be much in the way of local resources on it but should I get into audio recording with some of the great software available on Linux it is possible that it could be used that way. I am planning to evaluate Ardour and a couple of other serious audio packages on it just to see how good they are, as well as Qgis. Mostly it will be testing Debian 10 which is a development release.