Building a PC just for linux?

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Akanbe
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Building a PC just for linux?

Post by Akanbe »

So, I'm thinking about building a computer and mainly just running Linux on it. It would be my main computer. I was thinking of building a mid-level PC so I could install (or emulate) Windows 7 at some point down the line since there will probably be some PC game I will eventually want to run on it. I'd probably also purchase a nice 23" Samsung monitor (XL237 probably) to go with it since nice monitors are great for movie watching.

So the two questions I pose to the community are:

-Is this idea silly? Am I going overboard?

-I have used Linux on and off again for about two years now, but never with something like this. What obstacles, if any at all, might I run into building a new PC for Linux use?

-Anyone have (or heard) any experience with ibuypower.com? For the components themselves, are the prices reasonable? They seem pretty close to newegg but I can't tell.

Thanks :D
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mmesantos1
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by mmesantos1 »

Akanbe wrote:So, I'm thinking about building a computer and mainly just running Linux on it. It would be my main computer. I was thinking of building a mid-level PC so I could install (or emulate) Windows 7 at some point down the line since there will probably be some PC game I will eventually want to run on it. I'd probably also purchase a nice 23" Samsung monitor (XL237 probably) to go with it since nice monitors are great for movie watching.

So the two questions I pose to the community are:

-Is this idea silly? Am I going overboard?

-I have used Linux on and off again for about two years now, but never with something like this. What obstacles, if any at all, might I run into building a new PC for Linux use?

-Anyone have (or heard) any experience with ibuypower.com? For the components themselves, are the prices reasonable? They seem pretty close to newegg but I can't tell.

Thanks :D
Hi Akanbe,
No this is not silly, when I purchased my current PC I kept in mind that I wanted to run Linux on it. I went the budget way, I purchased a Compaq desktop since I new it would have the general hardware that would be compatible. The PC I chose had Nvidia chipset for sound and ethernet so I knew it would be compatible. I purchased a Nvidia Graphics card to upgrade from the onbaord Nvidia Video controller again knowing it would work well with Linux. All my hardware is listed in my signature for reference. So by doing this I also saved money, it only cost be about $700 US dollars for everything. I have been using it now for over 1 year and have been able to run several versions on Mint/ Ubuntu and many other distros on it so far. If you are not looking to go budget then builIding the PC from scatch is the way to go. This way you can pick all your own components, ie Motherboard, Case, power supply and so on. I have not looked into iBuypower.com so I am not sure how they are. I do use newegg that is were I purchased the Video card and power supply and ram from for my current PC. They normally have the best prices what I have seen. You can buy all needed parts for your PC from them. Well I hope this gives you some insight into your question. :)
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by markcynt »

I've read that ibuypower is a great buy if you have no problems but if you need tech support it's a nightmare.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... Mg&cad=rja

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... tg&cad=rja

For the most part you'll have better luck with Nvidia and Intel chipsets and Nvidia graphics.
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OldManHook
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by OldManHook »

If You Can BUILD it Yourself,As the above poster noted ibuypower service is to say the least hell,but they have good systems
Building yourself lets you fine parts you like newegg is fine,but when you find a part search for the best price.
As for Video Nvida is no better than AMD/ATI Just like which Distro You use.
You can check out http://www.phoronix.comfor some good Linux hardware reviews
Good Luck 8)
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by tinca »

Akanbe ,

if you do not want to be part of the apparently growing list of newcomers to Mint9 who have wireless issues, do some checking and make sure that you get one that works.

Best regards Keith
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Pierre
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by Pierre »

-Is this idea silly? Am I going overboard?
Heck - NoWay. :D

That's exactly just what this thing is:- triple boot straight 'nix machine.

& quite low spec too - 1600Mhz / 40Gb hdd / 512Mb ram :)

don't do anything flash, & it works just peachy.

If you want to run windows 7, say, you would need at least 2GB ram & 2000Mhz & a bigger hdd, say 250Gb.
to safely run Vbox, ok.

which is about what my test box is, except for the hdd size, is much smaller.
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by DataMan »

I finished up my 5th build last December. The box is 95% usage on Linux. I do have a Win7 Pro 64 bit installed for the few things I need Windows for.

My recommendations are:

1. Build the box yourself. If you can read and play with tinker toys, you can probably build your own pc.
2. Buy name brand components and stay away from the bargain basement junk that is available.
3. Buy as much technology as you can afford with respect to processor core, cache and speed.
4. Get as much ram as you can afford (make sure the limits are within the max spec's on the m/b).
5. When you've made you final choices, check the principal components against one of the Linux hardware compatibility sites.
6. Enjoy the experience and satisfaction of building a quality pc all by yourself (or make it a family affair... :lol: ).

-DataMan
Linux'd since 2005 Linux ID 422356 Ubuntu ID 15015
Akanbe
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by Akanbe »

mmesantos1 wrote: Hi Akanbe,
No this is not silly, when I purchased my current PC I kept in mind that I wanted to run Linux on it. I went the budget way, I purchased a Compaq desktop since I new it would have the general hardware that would be compatible. The PC I chose had Nvidia chipset for sound and ethernet so I knew it would be compatible. I purchased a Nvidia Graphics card to upgrade from the onbaord Nvidia Video controller again knowing it would work well with Linux. All my hardware is listed in my signature for reference. So by doing this I also saved money, it only cost be about $700 US dollars for everything. I have been using it now for over 1 year and have been able to run several versions on Mint/ Ubuntu and many other distros on it so far. If you are not looking to go budget then builIding the PC from scatch is the way to go. This way you can pick all your own components, ie Motherboard, Case, power supply and so on. I have not looked into iBuypower.com so I am not sure how they are. I do use newegg that is were I purchased the Video card and power supply and ram from for my current PC. They normally have the best prices what I have seen. You can buy all needed parts for your PC from them. Well I hope this gives you some insight into your question. :)
I think my biggest concern is that I don't know what components are compatible with what MoBos. I definitely would like a decent processor so I'm wondering what budget machines would have a decent processor. Are there any reasons to go with an Intel Core 2 processor over an i3? i3 seems to be the way to go, correct?
markcynt wrote:I've read that ibuypower is a great buy if you have no problems but if you need tech support it's a nightmare.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... Mg&cad=rja

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... tg&cad=rja

For the most part you'll have better luck with Nvidia and Intel chipsets and Nvidia graphics.
Yuck. I did look them up a bit beforehand and found various places (like the reseller ratings you linked) where the general consensus was they were decent, just slow shippers/poor communicators. Cnet definitely paints them in a whole new (negative) light. Not sure if they're someone I want to give business to (though the Cnet posters could be the vocal minority, who knows).
DataMan wrote:I finished up my 5th build last December. The box is 95% usage on Linux. I do have a Win7 Pro 64 bit installed for the few things I need Windows for.

My recommendations are:

1. Build the box yourself. If you can read and play with tinker toys, you can probably build your own pc.
2. Buy name brand components and stay away from the bargain basement junk that is available.
3. Buy as much technology as you can afford with respect to processor core, cache and speed.
4. Get as much ram as you can afford (make sure the limits are within the max spec's on the m/b).
5. When you've made you final choices, check the principal components against one of the Linux hardware compatibility sites.
6. Enjoy the experience and satisfaction of building a quality pc all by yourself (or make it a family affair... :lol: ).

-DataMan
Building by myself scares the heck outta me. I wouldn't even know where to start. I definitely do want name brand pieces and semi-decent specs. Not sure about the i3 over the Core Duo though.
tinca wrote:Akanbe ,

if you do not want to be part of the apparently growing list of newcomers to Mint9 who have wireless issues, do some checking and make sure that you get one that works.

Best regards Keith
Is 9 that much different than the older ones? 5-8 worked well with wireless on my ancient computer.
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DataMan
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by DataMan »

Try this, it may help a whole lot:

http://community.linuxmint.com/hardware

You might want to check this SITE out with respect to tinker toy building your own first pc :D

http://forums.hardwareguys.com/ikonboard.cgi

-DataMAN
Linux'd since 2005 Linux ID 422356 Ubuntu ID 15015
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markcynt
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by markcynt »

Akanbe wrote:
markcynt wrote:I've read that ibuypower is a great buy if you have no problems but if you need tech support it's a nightmare.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... Mg&cad=rja

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... tg&cad=rja

For the most part you'll have better luck with Nvidia and Intel chipsets and Nvidia graphics.
Yuck. I did look them up a bit beforehand and found various places (like the reseller ratings you linked) where the general consensus was they were decent, just slow shippers/poor communicators. Cnet definitely paints them in a whole new (negative) light. Not sure if they're someone I want to give business to (though the Cnet posters could be the vocal minority, who knows).
If you read both Cnet and Reseller carefully you'll see a definite pattern of poor tech support if something does go wrong with the computer.
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by tinca »

Akanbe

judging by the amount of problems people are reporting with wireless on Mint 9, I think that you should give it some serious consideration.

I cannot help you as I do not use wireless at all.

Best regards Keith
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mintnewbie63
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by mintnewbie63 »

Hello Akanbe
I had build my desktop two years ago, I started with computers in 2007 until then I knew nothing about them, it's very easy if you read the instructions carefully and you ask for help in the Linux forums for things you don't know, personally I don't trust online shoping I would go to a computer parts retailer and buy everything from there, I believe that for building your own computer AMD cpu's are better Athlon 64 X2, an AMD based motherboard from ASUS or Gigabite or Foxcon, both CPU and motherboard should support hyperthreading, as for graphics a good ATI Radeon with 3D support for games, the motherboard and cpu don't have to be very expansive that way you save money for the graphics card, before you buy anything do a search on the internet, my system is: motherboard ASUS M3A78-EMH HDMI, cpu AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200, harddrive WD 320Gb, ram Kingston 1gb X2 DDR2, ATI 3200 chipset, graphics card ASUS EAH3450, case Coolmaster 336, I wish you good luck.
Kind regards
Gary
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by DataMan »

For wireless, I just added a pci wireless card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6833166051

Worked out of the box on both Mint 8 & 9 Gnome.

Major component list on my last build:
M/B : ASUS P5Q Deluxe
Video : MSI N9800GT-MD1G GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 256 bit
CPU : Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 Yorkfield 2.83GHz LGA775
RAM : Crucia Ballistix 2GB SDRAM DDR2 800 (x4)
HD 1 : WD 750G 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s
HD 2 : WD 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s
Optical #1 : Sony Optiarc 25x DVD/CD Rewritable SATA
Optical #2 : Samsung DVD SATA (w/ Lightscribe)
P/S : Corsair 850W CMPSU-850TX (future builds will use only modular PS's)
Case : Antec 1200 Full Tower

Assembly time approx 2 hrs (spent about 45 minutes on cable management - wanted a professional looking job as I've got a blasted side view panel on the case... :lol: )

-DataMan
Linux'd since 2005 Linux ID 422356 Ubuntu ID 15015
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Pierre
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by Pierre »

The other option, is to get a "bare bones box" -

a case that has the PSU, the mobo & it's cpu already installed,
but not much else is.

then add the rest yourself, as you see fit.

any no-name small pc shop, will install theses bits for you,
maybe for a fee, that you may need to negotiate.
since you got the stuff, from them, anyway ......
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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by jesica »

I reckon that you must go to your nearest computer shop. tell them what you want to do on your computer, tell them you only insist of Linux, and if they don't want to help you, they don't wont your money, go somewhere else,

My friend went to our small market computer shop and it was funny that they use Ubuntu Live CD to check hardware.

Don't even bother to build it yourself if you are afraid. The CPU can be a handful to put in if you have not done it before, and most places does not give a guarantee if you blow the CPU.

Mint 9 is so users friendly that most software will work on the hardware, but with prices so cheap these day's I will go big and run Mint 9 LXDE, it will be superfast

Nvidea 1G GeForce 8800 GT 1GB 256 bit
Intel Core i5
4GB DDRAM DDR3 800 1066 mHZ
256 GIG solid state HDD
Blueray writer
Samsung 22 inch Wide screen LCD

And one last thing, everyone experience different things, go with your gut, you will be glad or you will not be, I like to keep things simple

O yes, with wireless, just don't use wireless usb cards, or so called a win modem, surf the net for a Linux modem and it will work

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=wireless+modems+for+ubuntu

The drivers all comes with Mint,
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Happy apt-get-ing!


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Re: Building a PC just for linux?

Post by mike405a »

I purchased my desktop from iBuypower there phone line always responded with a human! not a computer or voice recording! My computer customized to my preferences arrived timely in about two and a half weeks! I recieved update E-Mails from them twice while waiting for my PC to ship and always a human to respond to my two phone calls!
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