Choosing a motherboard
(It's been a while since I've been on these forums)
Hi. I'm in the process of selecting hardware for a new box that will run gentoo, and so far I've selected the processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 (FSB 1066 MHz, 4M L2 cache, 2.4 GHz, LGA775, and obviously two cores). Now I'm selecting a motherboard, and am a bit lost in what to look for in terms of linux compatibility.
Do I select a chipset first, and then a manufacturer and features? Or does the chipset not matter much? Are there any chipset or motherboard brands that I should look for or outright avoid when considering maximum compatibility with linux? I currently have two semprons with a pair of MSI K7 board that have worked well for me, so I'd like to stay MSI if there's no compelling reason to choose another brand.
If you have any thoughts or know of any good places to read up on this, let me know.
Your question, the way I understand it, has little to do with Linux compatability and more with whether a certain hardware configuration will work. Very very rarely is hardware the problem for Linux, with most distros offering excellent hardware detection. Unless the motherboard is built before, say, 1992 and is not intended for 64-bit operation (still considered immature), you will likely enjoy a fine working device.
To summarise: ask your hardware provider what motherboard, RAM and chipset goes with your processor; the fact that you want to run Linux is really immaterial, barring perhaps marketing purposes.
It's not a question about matching hardware configurations. I want to know if a bad choice for a chipset could give me headaches, for instance if I'm configuring my kernel and find that nothing matches my hardware (unlikely), or that the driver is only poorly reverse engineered and has stability issues (more fear-worthy). Also, I've heard of issues with extra motherboard components like RAID controllers, and I'll of course want to check the integrated sound card against the alsa project's matrix.
But I'm a little relieved to get that reply. A person on another forum recommended using an intel chipset so I'll probably go with that and not worry so much.