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Re: Debian 5.0 & 64 bits

On 12/12/2009 6:32 PM, amka wrote:
I am going to buy a new computer and wonder what is the best for 64bits.
AMD or Intel ?

Could someone give me please an advice ?

I have actualy an AMD Opteron and the idea is, for the moment, to buy :

   - CPU           AMD       Opteron 1356
   - Motherboard   Tyan      Tomcat n3400B (S2925-E)
   - Memory        Kingston  KVR800D2E6K2/4G   (2x kit of 2x2GB = 8GB)

Perhaps somebody have an experience with some of that.

Your best bet is usually to go with newer + faster. This would seem to suggest Intel, Core i7 or i5. Lynnwood (Core i5, socket LGA 1156) gives a good price/performance.

However, you are thinking workstation class motherboard. This would imply possibly two-socket. Intel is definitely more expensive there, if you need a Xeon. So I would look to other considerations, like finding the motherboard with the capabilities you need, or what support it has for the OS you are running or what support the OS you are running has for the motherboard. (Debian, certainly.) Then get the CPU that works in that motherboard.

Other considerations besides 64-bit are virtualization support and upgrades. Newer is better, here.

If you have the CPU in hand, and are just looking for what to build a system around, look out for flexibility with upgrades and reliability.

If you build a new desktop every three years like I do, that may be a different choice that if you are building a machine to last throughout the ages. (Which seems to be a Linux user's tradition. There are people who are still trying to get kernel 2.6.32 to run on a 386sx-16 motherboard with 4 MB from the late 'eighties.)

You named specific memory and motherboard. Maybe a few people have experience with one or the other, but I doubt many have used that exact combination. Tyan and Kingston are reputable names.

I have gone the consumer/enthusiast-grade route with a Core i7 socket 1366 board, a variant of the ASUS P6T line of boards, and I am happy. It was not the most economical route, however.

It has triple-channel memory, and I have 12 GB. This is about 10 GB more than Debian needs, unless you are doing a lot of virtual server stuff. The i7 has four cores, starting at 2.66 GHz, and SMT (Hyperthreading), so it has eight threads at once. I sometimes run the host OS plus five guest OSes all with 2 GB each, and performance is very nice.

The Opteron can do this as well, but it suffers with a high thread count. Visit Anandtech web site to read up on this. The Opteron is fine for a Desktop. If you want to play Crysis, get a Core i7, but to just get the job done, AMD is fine.

I guess what I am saying is, look to your application. You did not tell us what you were building this machine for.

Mark Allums

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