Since my computer dates back to 2003, has an Intel Pentium M processor and is therefore not yet equipped with pae, I want to know if it is possible to install newer versions of Ubuntu as the version 12.04 LTS now? Lubuntu and Xubuntu have not worked for me and I do not want to, because their support will end soon.

I have successfully installed version 12.04 (the non-pae version), but should like to the current version Ubuntu 14, is that possible? Would an update to bring something? Because newer Ubuntu versions still run my knowledge, only with pae?


Ubuntu 14.04 (and derivatives like Xubuntu) supports an option called forcepae which enables it to run on many older Pentium M laptops. Keep in mind is that these laptops are a decade or so old, and often lack the memory and GPU required to smoothly run a desktop like Unity that is designed for modern 3D accelerated systems. It might be better to try one of the lightweight distributions like Xubuntu.

To enable forcepae:

  • Boot the 32-bit Ubuntu (or Xubuntu etc.) installer
  • When the image of the keyboard and little man in circle appears hit the Tab key
  • "Choose your language" popup appears. Use the cursor keys and hit the Enter key to choose your language
  • Press F6, a grey menu will popup with some boot options
  • Press escape to close the window
  • You will now see a line that says:

    Boot Options file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper initrd=/casper/initrd.lz quiet splash --

    Edit this line and add the forcepae parameter to the end:

    Boot Options file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper initrd=/casper/initrd.lz quiet splash -- forcepae

  • Hit the Enter key, hopefully Ubuntu will boot and the rest of your install will be successful. If you have graphical problems with Unity, or just find it slow, try a more lightweight distribution like Xubuntu.

  • My Laptop do not have the option of "forcepae". – user280487 May 11 '14 at 17:41
  • @user280487: you will have to type this option as an installation option accessible as said in this answer. – Takkat May 11 '14 at 17:44
  • @user280487 forcepae is an parameter of the Linux kernel, it is not some option of a particular laptop. You can enable it as explained above. – bain May 11 '14 at 22:25
  • It sounds like some Pentium M processors have an otherwise working PAE feature that is disabled somehow, and forcepae tells Linux to try and force-enable it. – thomasrutter May 6 '15 at 1:35

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