Installing Elementary OS “Loki” on 32bit architecture

I have an old Lenovo IdeaPad S10-2 with an Intel Atom processor that has mostly been lying around, since I mostly use my desktop for my day-to-day stuff and I have a halfway decent laptop to take with me. So I decided I wanted to give it to a friend who could really use it, but unfortunately, it has always had some serious performance issues, no matter which desktop environment I tried. It came pre-installed with Windows XP, which I dumped almost immediately, but even that wasn’t working so well. I tried pretty much every Linux DE installable from the Ubuntu repositories, including Mate and LXDE. The only one that made it sort of usable was Openbox, and that’s stretching the definition of usable a bit. So I didn’t feel to great about giving it to a non-techie friend.

Recently, though, I came across Elementary OS and tried it in a virtual machine. I was pleasantly surprised, both by its performance and the simplicity of its user interface. I did a little Googling and found this article on how to install the Pantheon desktop on top of an existing Ubuntu 17.10 installation (which is what I had running on the netbook, Ubuntu Mate 17.10.) The PPAs listed in that article have 32bit versions, so I tried those. It worked great, and the performance was the best I’ve ever had on that netbook. So I decided that I wanted to dump the Ubuntu installation and start with Elementary OS from scratch, only to discover that there are no 32bit images. I did some more research, but all the forum discussions I found told me it couldn’t be done. I refused to settle for that, and I did figure it out. I thought I’d share the process. Continue reading Installing Elementary OS “Loki” on 32bit architecture