Today was a cold snowy winter Sunday. The Super Bowl is past. March madness is in the future. To pass the time I loaded Xubuntu 7.10 on old 600 Mhz Pentium III server with 328 mg of memory, a couple of 20 gig hard drives, a CD-Rom and a sound card scavenged from my parts bin. I know, it sounds like a waste of time, but there is a method in my madness. I can use my regular machine to surf the web looking for answers when I screw something up. As part of my experiment I earlier installed PC-BSD 1.4. It puked on KDE. Off it came, leading directly to Xubuntu. Xubuntu has breathed life in the old beast. The Xfce desktop is much, much lighter than either Gnome or KDE. The old machine seems to have everything I need in a backup computer. Of course, a 1999 model 600 Mhz Pentium III server will easily run Linux but it will never display Flash videos with any grace. I would need at least 1 Ghz processor or a better video card (probably both) to run flash video properly, 2 Ghz would be better. With Xubuntu the machine is more than satisfactory as a backup. It will surf the web, handle backups and generally fit nicely on the home network. If you want to use an old machine to learn Linux, you really should give Xubuntu a try. My next planned experiment is to install FreeBSD from scratch. As quickly as this generation of Linux is inducing boredom (a good thing), the next snowy day it might go the old machine, but I will install the Xfce desktop unless someone can recommend something better. As to Linux Mint 4.0 and Ubuntu 7.10 running on separate partitions on my main computer, I find that after some recent upgrades to Firefox I prefer Ubuntu. On balance, if you want a Linux distro that does almost everything out of the box, Linux Mint is a very good choice. Of course, since Linux Mint is a Ubuntu derivative, there isn't much difference.