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My best friend and I will be starting university in the fall. She is intelligent, but comes frmo a poor family that couldn't afford a computer or internet access, so the only times she uses the internet are in public libraries and on her phone's browser.
I have an old, unused computer with 256 MB of RAM and a processor from a few generations ago — a Pentium 4, if I remember correctly. I'd like to give it to her, but no modern versions of Windows/MS Office will run properly with those specs, and even if they would, one would have to consider the "MS Tax", which I don't want to pay.
Linux may not be "ready for the desktop" if the user expects everything to be exactly like Windows, but in you, Slashdotters' experience, can it work for someone who has little experience either way? Will I be able to set her up a system in which she can easily find the programs she needs (probably mostly web browsing, and some office document editing thrown in) and install new one?
If so, does anyone have any distro/DE/application recommendations? Hopefully, I will not have to spend too much of my time maintaining her computer once I've set it up and she has it, so although they might work well under the memory constraints, suggestions like "use Gentoo and install TeX for word processing" aren't really what I'm looking for.
Any ideas? Thanks Slashdot!"