On Mon, Jan 17, 2000 at 10:53:20AM -0000, Paul Linehan mentioned:
> > Also, any URLs/references about the pros and cons
> > of purchasing a machine that is Linux compatible?
> > Winmodems to be avoided of course - what other issues
> > are there?
> > What about USB?
> I really am quite a newbie to the hardware scene -
> I normally just get given a machine and am told to
> get on with it!
There aren't many issues these days. USB could be a problem - only the
2.3.x kernel supports it at the moment, so if you had USB devices you
would have to start reading a lot of documentation to get the 2.3.x kernel
working properly, and with USB. Does that scare you ?
> My first question would be about SCSI.
> Is this worth going for? If so, are there any special
> hardware requirements?
Not for a home machine, or for beginners. IDE may have it's flaws, but
> In a sense, does Linux "not care" about SCSI, this being a
> hardware matter out of the hands, so to speak, of the
Exactly. SCSI is very generic. Once the "SCSI hostadapter" is supported,
so it the drive. Linux has very good support for most SCSI hostadapters.
Check RedHat's "Hardware compatibility list" on http://support.redhat.com
> What about my choice of motherboard?
> Would this be a good one? Pentium II/III BX chipset
What do you want out of the system ? There are few poor boards these
days. Anything with a BX chipset is a good buy. http://www.arstechnica.com
and http://www.tomshardware.com are excellent hardware review sites. They
helped me decide to splash out a bit extra on an Abit BP6 (dual celeron,
with ATA-66 support). Excellent little board.
> If I did purchase the above (the heart of the machine)
> would it restrict me in future? What about USB? Firewire?
> Adding peripherals?
All motherboards these days have USB on them. Very, very few have
firewire, so I can't see you suddenly being left behind, by buying a
> What about modems - some sort of internet connectivity is
> very important - if I have an external modem, will that use
> up a port, thereby stopping me using something else?
Well, yeah. You have two serial ports. Modem could live on one. Or, you
could go for a USB modem - though I've no idea what support there is for
> When USB &c. does come in, will that mean that I can just
> "daisy chain" my modem, USB zip drive and my 43 other USB
Yeah. Pretty much. You may need a "USB hub", much like an Ethernet hub.
Many high-end monitors come with them these days. But, with a pair of
serial ports, a pair of USB ports, and a parallell port, you should be OK
for the time being.
> Final point. Is anyone really annoyed that it is now impossible
> for example to find a 4 GB HDD or a Pentium 200? The machine that
> I want will just be for a bit of internet access, some emails and
> maybe a wee bit of C++ programming. I don't *_need_* 8.4 GB and a
> Pentium 500.
Well, the problem is that Intel can only get £200 for a PIII 450 or
something. So it's not worth their while selling slower chips. Peats on
Parnell st. Have decent AMD motherboard/CPU combos, and could sell you a
233Mhz AMD chip & board for £70 or something. That should be sufficent.
No small disks does annoy me. I would have preferred to get eight 2GB
disks, instead of a 10GB disk and a 6GB disk for my current machine, and
try out some serious RAID stuff, but you can't get 2GB disks. Again, in
the factories, it'll cost Quantum the same amount of money to produce a
4GB disk as a 40GB disk. So what do you think they'll make ?
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