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Advice on new system for Linux

On 4/13/2010 11:36 AM, James Kramer wrote:
> My computer just died.  I had it for nearly 10 years.  I need to
> purchase a new system and would like one that would last another 10
> years.
> 1.  Would this system suite my needs.
> 2. I do not play games but I would like the option to upgrade in the future.
> 3.  I never used 64 bit Linux. I assume that by now most programs (ie
> Firefox) are supported by it.
> 4. Do you think that I will run into any linux driver problems since
> it is such a new system.
> 5.Can I dual boot with Win XP.  That is will WinXP run on a 64 bit.
> It is my impression that AMD can simulate a 32 bit enviroment for
> Windows.  Thanks you in advance for your suggenstions.

Hard to say whether this would suit you for ten years, but at least the 
specs of that one are toward the upper end of the PC market (quad core, 
decent though not high-end GPU, 4GB RAM) so you have a chance. A measly 
500GB hard drive is a bit small these days but you can always add 
another one later. My main misgiving is that it appears to have a 4GB 
RAM ceiling (you mention "4GB max" in the motherboard description), and 
if you expect 10 years of life you might want more RAM than that later 
on. A system that can accept at least 8GB would be a better choice even 
if you don't plan to fill it now.

The GTS 250 (otherwise known as the 9800GTX, it's essentially the same 
GPU with a new label) is actually quite decent for current gaming 
demands. In ten years it won't be, but it should at least be able to 
keep up with the demands of desktop effects and video playback.

In my experience, everything runs on 64-bit Linux systems these days. 
Some programs are really 32-bit code and require 32-bit libraries but 
modern distributions install them automatically and then they just work. 
You could also run 32-bit Linux on that system if the 64-bit doesn't 
work out for some reason -- and unlike 32-bit Windows, 32-bit Linux can 
use all your RAM.

There aren't any really cutting edge components in that system so I 
would not expect any driver problems. You will need the closed-source 
NVidia driver for best video performance; some distros such as Ubuntu 
will offer to automatically install it for you.

Sure, you could dual-boot XP. XP will be limited to using a bit less 
than 3GB of your RAM. All modern desktop CPUs from both AMD and Intel 
will run both 32 and 64-bit operating systems. You could also install 
virtualization software and run XP under a Linux host OS.

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