What kind of graphics card?

Steven Reddish sredd1701 at gmail.com
Thu Jun 5 01:48:13 BST 2008


Eric,
 I'm by no means a Linux guru, actually more of a noob, however your
problems remind me of my first experience with Linux.
In the early 90's I started with a Mac, then after a few years I couldn't
upgrade the OS without buying a whole new computer. So I cobbled together a
PC from cheap parts and installed Win98. Then I heard about Linux and loved
the Idea of open source software, but my first attempts of installing it
were a total failure.
Then in 2004 I bought a cheap system from Walmart, by no means a top of the
line machine, but it had commonly used hardware. A couple of years later I
added a second hard drive an set up a dual boot Winxp/Ubuntu system. I now
use Ubuntu more than 99% of the time.

The point of my ramblings is this, Linux works great on commonly used
hardware. But if you have bleeding edge or old nonstandard hardware there is
a lot of tweaking involved to get it work right.

I think buying a system with Linux preinstalled is great advice, but if
you're cheap (like me), at least buy a machine with commonly used hardware.
If it doesn't work out of the box, at least there are a lot of other people
trying to make it work.

Also, I've tried a lot of other Linux Distros, but have found the community
help and support of Ubuntu to be the very best there is!


On Wed, Jun 4, 2008 at 11:41 AM, Eric Weir <eeweir at bellsouth.net> wrote:

> On 6/1/2008 Brian Pitts wrote:
>
> >  How much memory do you have now and how much did you temporarily try?
> >  You said you are using your motherboards integrated graphics now,
> >  right? Do you know what driver it uses and how much of your system's
> >  RAM it borrows?
>
> I have 512 Mb. Tried 2 Gb. I have very little information on the mother
> board. I know the name -- Amptron 925 ATX. It's old -- my machine was
> made in 2002. I don't have the manual. I don't know how to check
> otherwise on the answers to the questions you ask. Talking with the shop
> that made it yesterday I learned that I bought the cheapest system they
> made. The motherboard was bottom of the line then.
>
> That said, there have been further developments that may throw some
> light on what's going on, or may just muddy the waters further.
> Yesterday, on the first two attempts, my system failed to boot. The
> bottom line of the message I got, which I wrote down, was, "No space
> left on device." On the third try, it did boot. As previously,
> everything is glacially slow.
>
> Today the boot process stopped while underway. The the characters on the
> screen was a statement to the effect that if I did a "control-d" boot
> would resume. I did control-d and the system finished booting. I ran the
> partition editor. It showed that almost all the partition on which the
> os is installed was used up: 7.5 Gb total, 3.5 Mb available. I just ran
> it a second time. Now it's showing 2.4 Gb available. In either case, why
> would Xubuntu be taking up that much diskspace? I haven't installed
> much/any extra software.
>
> I have been trying to download the live CD for LinuxMint, but the system
> won't allow it. Says there's not enough memory to save in /temp. [I
> don't want to save. I want to write to a CD.]
>
> Unrelated, but of concern to me, a second hard drive, which appears as
> mounted in the fstab file, does not show up on the partition editor. And
> I can't read it with my file manager.
>
> It's beginning to appear that my hardware is all screwed up. I am at a
> turning point. My intention was to see if I could get a decent
> installation of Linux running on this ancient system. If I could. If I
> could demonstrate to myself that I can get a system set up, that I don't
> continually have to be tinkering with, I'd go out and by a new machine
> and put Linux on it. Otherwise, I'd go out and get me an iMac.
>
> I am torn. The open-source idea and community are extremely appealing.
> I've convinced myself, through my own experience and what I've seen of
> others' systems, that the Linux route is definitely appealing.But I'm
> tired of fiddling. I don't want to have to be continually doing this.I
> want to use the system, not continually be working on it, especially
> since my experience and understanding are limited.
>
> If I thought I'd have more success with a new machine -- even really
> good ones are not that expensive anymore -- I'd go out and buy one
> today. Given the problems I've had with Linux on this machine, I'm not
> confident that that would be the case.
>
> Forgive what I know must be coming across as an ignoramus' rant. Any
> wisdom would be appreciated nevertheless.
>
> >  My preferences are Intel > ATI (now owned by AMD) > Nvidia.
> >
> >  Compare ATI/AMD's open source strategy [0] to nvidia's [1].
> >
> >  [0] http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=826 [1]
> >  http://www.opentheblob.com/nvidia/
>
> I've skimmed them enough to have a sense of what you're talking about.
> I've printed them out and will read them more carefully. I was under the
> impression that nvidia was more accommodating of Linux/open-source. Now
> I understand that that was with proprietary drivers that actually had
> limited capabilities.
>
> I appreciate your trying to help when I can't be of much help in helping
> you be of help.
>
> Sincerely,
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Eric Weir
> Decatur, GA  USA
> eeweir at bellsouth.net
>
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