Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

All Gurus once were Newbies
Forum rules
There are no such things as "stupid" questions. However if you think your question is a bit stupid, then this is the right place for you to post it. Please stick to easy to-the-point questions that you feel people can answer fast. For long and complicated questions prefer the other forums within the support section.
Before you post please read how to get help
Post Reply
Cortimi
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:47 am

Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Cortimi » Tue Jul 31, 2018 6:59 pm

Alrighty, hopefully this is an easy one.

Currently I have the following setup:
Intel i5 4460
8GB DDR3
Nvidia GTX 960
MSI H81M-P33 motherboard

This "was" a decent setup for what I am trying to use my PC for: "native" gaming with Steam, and gaming on Android using an Emulator (Genymotion). Thing is though, the whole Spectre/Meltdown thing has REALLY crippled more poor i5. Made Windows pretty much unusable, and that was the last straw that made me switch to Linux permanently. So I am looking to upgrade and build myself a new rig. I am looking at switching to AMD for simple price/performance and core/threadcount ratio. I need a lot of cores and a beefy bit of RAM. I want to keep my GPU (has enough power for what I need, I just worry about it going out)

Options I am considering:

Building a new rig with one of these CPU's, and pairing it with a an AMD R580 or Nvidia 1080 6GB GPU-
Intel i5-8400
AMD Ryzen 5 2600/X

Or saving a ton of money and reusing my GPU with the following CPU-
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G (Just in case my GPU dies, this would make a decent fallback)

So I guess my questions are:
How good is NON-free driver support for AMD graphics cards? I have zero issues with Nvidia, just want to keep options open.
How about the new Ryzen APUs and their corresponding chipsets?
How well do AMD chips handle virtualization (specifically Virtualbox) in Linux?
Should I keep my current GPU and pair it with a new CPU?

How well supported are the 8th gen Intel CPUs and their chipsets supported?
What hardware DOESN'T work on modern motherboards (built-in WiFi, audio chipsets, etc)?

If anyone is rocking a new rig without issues, let me know what parts you have!
Last edited by Cortimi on Wed Aug 01, 2018 4:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

jpenguin
Level 2
Level 2
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 11:33 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by jpenguin » Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:21 am

If your gaming Intel processers have a slightly advantage.
https://youtu.be/ukZqSoDyjcU

You won't have problems with nvidia cards and proprietary drivers, but you know what Torvalds said to them. I like AMD cards, their free drivers are great now; you might need to use mbabs kernel build with them.
https://github.com/M-Bab/linux-kernel-amdgpu-binaries

My ryzen 1700X suffers from the c-state bug as most 8th Gen CPUs
https://askubuntu.com/questions/803640/ ... -bay-trail

My build
https://pcpartpicker.com/b/WcTBD3#partlist
Last edited by jpenguin on Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
catweazel
Level 19
Level 19
Posts: 9184
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:44 pm
Location: Australian Antarctic Territory

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by catweazel » Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:33 am

jpenguin wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:21 am
you might need to use mbabs kernel build with them.
Nonsense.
¡uʍop ǝpısdn sı buıɥʇʎɹǝʌǝ os ɐıןɐɹʇsnɐ ɯoɹɟ ɯ,ı

User avatar
catweazel
Level 19
Level 19
Posts: 9184
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:44 pm
Location: Australian Antarctic Territory

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by catweazel » Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:41 am

Cortimi wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 6:59 pm
Nvidia GTX 960

[...]

Or saving a ton of money and reusing my GPU with the following CPU-
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G (Just in case my GPU dies, this would make a decent fallback)

How good is NON-free driver support for AMD graphics cards? I have zero issues with Nvidia, just want to keep options open.
How about the new Ryzen APUs and their corresponding chipsets?
How well do AMD chips handle virtualization (specifically Virtualbox) in Linux?

How well supported are the 8th gen Intel CPUs and their chipsets supported?
Hi, @Cortimi

I'm running Ryzen without any issues. As for the GTX960 video card, if it suits your needs then there is no reason to spend more cash on a more powerful card. As for keeping your options open, I avoid AMD graphics cards. YMMV. Virtualisation works fine on AMD. Some people have had issues with the latest generation intel CPUs but you'd have to search that information.
Should I keep my current CPU and pair it with a new CPU?
It isn't clear what you mean.

Cheers.
¡uʍop ǝpısdn sı buıɥʇʎɹǝʌǝ os ɐıןɐɹʇsnɐ ɯoɹɟ ɯ,ı

jpenguin
Level 2
Level 2
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 11:33 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by jpenguin » Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:59 am

catweazel wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:33 am
jpenguin wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:21 am
you might need to use mbabs kernel build with them.
Nonsense.
Care to explain?

User avatar
catweazel
Level 19
Level 19
Posts: 9184
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:44 pm
Location: Australian Antarctic Territory

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by catweazel » Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:28 am

jpenguin wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:59 am
catweazel wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:33 am
jpenguin wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:21 am
you might need to use mbabs kernel build with them.
Nonsense.
Care to explain?
I don't wish to get into a debate. Suffice it to say that unwarranted pushing of users into completely unsupported kernels just creates more issues for those users and headaches for those left to clean up the mess.
¡uʍop ǝpısdn sı buıɥʇʎɹǝʌǝ os ɐıןɐɹʇsnɐ ɯoɹɟ ɯ,ı

Cortimi
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:47 am

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Cortimi » Wed Aug 01, 2018 4:42 am

catweazel wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:41 am
Cortimi wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 6:59 pm
Nvidia GTX 960

Should I keep my current CPU and pair it with a new CPU?
It isn't clear what you mean.

Cheers.
Woops, that was supposed to be, keep the current GPU. Yeah, don't think that was gonna compile as written :P

Mattyboy
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1196
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:17 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Mattyboy » Wed Aug 01, 2018 6:44 am

I read posts where people are having 'more' problems using the latest AMD cpu's than intels with current stable Linux distros.. but can't comment on AMD chips as I don't have one.

I was also reading in one of the Linux mags that the newer 4.17 kernel has 'full' support for AMD's new cpu's and graphics cards. So you should be good to use that with AMD. The 'issue', as at time of typing, is that Mint, Ubuntu etc are running on ( and 'have been designed around' ) the 4.15 Kernel which doesn't support newer AMD hardware as well. So 'you're' sitting in the middle with AMD at the moment. Sticking with 4.15 your new hardware 'may' not work, installing 4.17 on Mint 'may' break the OS, so you're on a knifes edge whatever you do.

If you have your heart set on AMD you have to accept that until Mint etc are running on 4.17, because it will be ( maybe 4.16 you'll have to research it ) you'll probably have a few headaches... but, in time, you'll get full support.

I can tell you that I'm running, on another rig, an Intel 8th gen coffee lake and GTX1080 on Mint 19 kernel 4.15 with zero issues... and that's because I waited until it had full support before I brought it.

If you go out today to buy your parts you'll have 'no' issue with intel. If it were me and I really wanted AMD I'd wait for a bit.

jpenguin
Level 2
Level 2
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 11:33 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by jpenguin » Wed Aug 01, 2018 10:53 am

I'm running that 4.18rc5 kernel from mbab's GIT, there seem to be no issues after I addressed the cstate bug

DAMIEN1307
Level 7
Level 7
Posts: 1911
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 8:13 pm
Location: Alamogordo, New Mexico, USA

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by DAMIEN1307 » Wed Aug 01, 2018 10:58 am

i am also running the Intel core i5-4460 CPU @ 3.20 GHz. 1 Physical Processor; 4 cores; 4 threads. also likewise 8 gigs corsair vengence ram, with onboard intel graphics...the only thing that i might have different than you is the microcode...im using this...intel-microcode 3.20180703.2 amd64 Processor microcode firmware for Intel CPUs...there has been zero hits in performance, at least for me, concerning spectre/meltdown mitigations that have been incorporated into the recent microcode updates since January till present...i do not do gaming nor do i use any "emulators" etc in my systems...i have these particular specs on 2 of my 4 computers here at home that ive built...the i5 systems all work/react literally faster than a blink of an eye...also you mentioned something to the effect of how good is AMD processor support with linux...in a nutshell ? not near as good as Intel support...i had previously used nothing but AMD previously...i converted everything over to Intel and everything is much faster with the intel than it ever was with AMD even with the 16 gigs of ram i was running with the AMD system...so i just divided the ram i had in the previous system and allocated it to the Intel systems giving them both 8 gigs each of the DDR3 corsair vengence, and both are flawless...methinks you have something else going on there that is effecting your performance with the i5-4460 which runs flawless for me...just my 2 cents here that you might be looking for some other bottleneck...even my boot up times on an old WD HDD spinner on cold boot is between 13 to 16 seconds...DAMIEN
ORDO AB CHAO

Cortimi
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:47 am

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Cortimi » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:16 pm

Thanks everyone for the replies. I "really" want a Ryzen setup, it's what my heart is set on, but I think my aversion to problems is going to outweigh my desire on this one. So probably going to stick with my GPU and get a new Intel CPU/MB/RAM.

I guess now I need to decide on which CPU to get. Does anyone know if Genymotion and other emulators are more singlethread bound or do they really take advantage of lots of threads? Don't really want to spring for an i7 unless it's going to be a noticeable difference.

Mattyboy
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1196
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:17 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Mattyboy » Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:57 pm

Cortimi wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:16 pm

I guess now I need to decide on which CPU to get. Does anyone know if Genymotion and other emulators are more singlethread bound or do they really take advantage of lots of threads? Don't really want to spring for an i7 unless it's going to be a noticeable difference.
Can't really advise in regard to Genymotion and other emulators but I can tell your mooted Intel i5-8400 is a sound choice. Its excellent value for what you're getting and is easily on par with the previous kaby lake i7 chips. New AMD competition has forced intel to really up their game.

User avatar
lsemmens
Level 8
Level 8
Posts: 2339
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:07 pm
Location: Rural South Australia

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by lsemmens » Wed Aug 01, 2018 9:37 pm

You make no mention of storage. If you haven't already done so. I'd recommend a SSD for your primary drive. The performance boost there is well worth it.
Kernel: 4.15.0-46-generic x86_64 bits
Desktop: Cinnamon 3.8.9
Distro: Linux Mint 19 Tara

Laptop HP-ProBook-470-G2 8Gb RAM SSD
Server AMD Phenom 9650 - GEForce 9400GT 6Gb RAM
+ three other Mint machines
Out of my mind - please leave a message

whm1974
Level 4
Level 4
Posts: 237
Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:07 pm

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by whm1974 » Wed Aug 01, 2018 9:50 pm

lsemmens wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 9:37 pm
You make no mention of storage. If you haven't already done so. I'd recommend a SSD for your primary drive. The performance boost there is well worth it.
I agree as an SSD and memory upgrade might be all the OP needs to do for increased performance.

Cortimi
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:47 am

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by Cortimi » Sat Aug 04, 2018 2:18 am

For storage, I have a 128GB SSD with a 1 TB HDD. I REALLY wish I knew I could put my home folder on a partition on the external drive when I installed, would have made my life immeasurably easier. Live and learn. When I build it, I have a 512GB M2 SSD I'll use as my root drive, with home folder on the external.

User avatar
jimthedj65
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 8:18 am

Re: Recommended hardware for new Linux PC build?

Post by jimthedj65 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:25 pm

I have reused 2 boards and cpu running complex multimedia.

Build 1.
I7 4790 Haswell Rev 3.00 32 gig ram Gigabyte Z97X-Gaming, 18 TB raid drive, Intel Graphics onboard 4k Support

Build 2
AMD 6300FX 32 gig ram AS Rock 970 Pro3 1 TB SSD Samsung

Both work like a charm and some minor Applet issues after upgrading to 19.2.

Post Reply

Return to “Newbie Questions”