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Re: Do-all computer?

alex wrote:
My current computer is an old Quantex that works very well with
a variety of installed Linux systems (Debian, Progeny, Knoppix, Lycoris, Mandrake, and Libranet) as well as Windows 98SE. The only fault is that it is quite slow compared to the newer computers. So, I would like to know if there are any new off shelf or mail order computers on the market today that will work well with
all Linuxes and Windows.

I don't care whether it is one with a preinstalled MS Windows XP or systemless or a preinstalled Linux, as long as it can be configured with multiple Linux systems and MS Windows XP or 98SE as my old Quantex is.

I'd go for one that I need to assemble myself except that I have no idea how to recognize components that are suitable for Linux, ie, motherboard, modem,.......etc., especially the more recent faster items. Something like 1.5 GHz CPU, 300 MHz FSB + for example:

The criteria is, it should be able to handle multiple Linux installations plus MS Windows without resorting to special
drivers such as needed with winmodems.

Any recommendations---off-the-shelf or mail order, systemless or Linux or Windows installed, or do-it-yourself.


I would recommend DIY.  In my case I built a machine for around $700,
the comparable Dell/HP/Compaq/whatever would have been 1.5-2x the price.

Here is where I get my stuff:


(I am not affiliated with them, they just have overall good prices)

My system (purchased 3 July):

Athlon XP+ 2500 (1.85 GHz) [$92]
1 GB (2x512) (PC2100, I think) DDR RAM [2x$75 ea.]
Biostar nForce2 mobo [$87]
     onboard nForce2 audio (modified i810, supported by OSS and ALSA)
     onboard nForce Ethernet (binary module for 2.4 kernel from nVidia)
Radeon 9000 Pro 128 MB DDR [$85]
WDC 120 GB HDD (8 MB cache) [$119]
3.25" FDD [$12]
Antec Bronze case [$64]
8-port autosensing 10/100 switch [$35]
2 CAT5 cables [$6 ea.]
Verbatim [Lite-On rebranded] CD-RW [$20] (from BestBuy with rebate)

Total Price: ~$676 + tax
(note: I already had keyboard, mouse, monitor, as I assume you do.
I also have extra network stuff in there.)

A similar model from HP (just priced a Pavilion) is about $950-$1050,
depending on which options you choose, as they don't have exactly the
same as I have.

My only thoughts are:

1 - the proprietary driver from nVidia is a pain, an extra step
to accomplish if I recompile or upgrade the kernel.
2 - to get nForce2 AGPGART you need a 2.4.22 or later kernel or
a patch that nVidia put out for 2.4.20
3 - nVidia AGP and Radeon graphics don't exactly play well
together (although I got DRI working with XFree86 4.3 from Daniel
Stone and a snapshot of the DRI drivers from sourceforge).
4 - The Radeon cards from 8500 and up are well supported by the
binary ATi driver (avialable for XFree86 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3)
5 - Radeons up to 9000 or 9200 are well supported by the open
source DRI drivers



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