What hardware should I use for to build an Ubuntu box?

Tom Sobieski January 18, 2013
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I want to build an Ubuntu box with the best components I can get and I want them all to play nice with Linux and each other. I’m a retiree, and cost is somewhat an issue, but I’d like something that isn’t going to wheeze and cough if I want to play a few games, and I don’t want to have to update the equipment every 3 months either. I have a rather new LCD/LED monitor with HDMI inputs, a rather new, rather large power supply and an ATX case. All suggestions, with a pointer to a reference site would be appreciated.

  1. Nevzat Akkaya
    January 21, 2013 at 9:16 am

    You can easily have the latest binary Nvidia drivers for Linux. I definitely suggest it for graphics card choice.

    For the cpu part, I'd choose 3rd generation of Intel processors (Ivy Bridge), i5 or i7. i5's performance/price value will be much higher and you can safely overclock it with a quality motherboard.

    Finally, try to get as much RAM as possible if you consider the future. I'd bought 8 or 16 GB as the minimum.

    I wish you luck.

  2. Christopher Chen
    January 19, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    I will share with you one word from my personal experience: NVIDIA!

  3. Oron Joffe
    January 19, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    Ubuntu's hardware requirements are not high, and it supports a wide range of hardware. As long as the equipment you get is on the compatibility list, you'll be fine. If you want to play games, I'd recommend you get a decent graphics card (the more you pay, the faster it will be, but even a cheap card will give far better gaming performance than the graphics integrated into motherboards or into Intel "i" processors). As for the screen, Ubuntu will work with ANY screenm, and the visual difference between VGA, DVI and HDMI is negligible (unless you go for very high resolutions, in which case VGA won't do). I'd suggest choosing the screen carefully on the basis of size, resolution and particularly quality (read reviews!).

  4. Rajaa Chowdhury
    January 19, 2013 at 1:37 am

    Ubuntu certified hardware list can be found at http://www.ubuntu.com/certification/

    Minumum Hardware Requirements [Broken Link Removed]

    System requirements https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/SystemRequirements

  5. Adrian Rea
    January 18, 2013 at 11:54 pm

    I would recomend a second hand, relatively new PC, like a DELL then you should have no major issues. Add an HDMI card in if it hasn't got one,

    • Paul Pruitt
      January 19, 2013 at 4:29 am

      That's a good strategy though steer clear of the older Dell OptiPlex desktops from those produced in 2003 and 2004, notably the GX270, because almost 100% of the machines had a motherboard failure before 3 years of use was up.

      Ubuntu has a lot of good drivers and all. I think if you know how to put togethor a machine, buying name brand parts will steer you clear of issues. Ubuntu may not even have trouble with generic parts, I think it is that good.


      https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RecommendedHardware - this is what you are looking for I think. From the article a sample is:


      Abit AN8-SLi

      Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L

      Gigabyte GA-G31M-S2L

      Gigabyte GA-G31MX-S2

      Gigabyte GA-73VM-S2

      Intel D101GGC

      Gigabyte P35-DS4..."

      Another article

      From there:
      "Visual effects are turned on by default if you have a GPU (graphics card or integrated chipset) which is supported. Supported GPU manufacturers:

      ATI (some may require the proprietary fglrx driver)

      Intel (i915 or better, except GMA 500, aka "Poulsbo")

      NVidia (with their proprietary driver)..."

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