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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
Posts: 3500
Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
revolution wrote:
None of the live versions work with my current hardware.


This can't be true, or you are doing something totally wrong. The recent Linux distributions work to some extent on every hardware, maybe except some very exotic one. Yes, some particular peripherals may not work sometimes, but as a whole, the OS should boot and operate more or less normally.

What should work always (except some very exotic, rare devices):

HDD controllers, keyboards and mouses, on USB or PS2, ethernet network adapters, external USB storage devices, VESA graphics.

What may work partially or unstable:

Some WiFi network adapters. Broadcom are infamous in this regard, but even their adapters work to some extent, making problems only in some edge cases.

Some sound cards, especially "high-end" special devices. The regular sound cards of the laptops should work always.

What hardware need to be selected carefully:

Video adapters. Almost every video card will work in Linux, but good support for hardware accelerated graphics have only some of the cards. Notice that the VESA fallback mode works almost always, so you will have working GUI, but slower than it can be.

Rarely used (not very popular) devices - I can name only bluetooth adapters here, because I have some problems with them from time to time. But with the recent kernels it seems that these problems have been fixed.

Some 3G modems. Again with the recent kernels the problems seems to be fixed.

So, the conclusion: You should be able to install and boot Linux on every hardware you can buy right now. After installation you should have working system with GUI and most of the devices working. The hardware accelerated graphics may need additional driver installation. Some problems with the following devices are possible, but not likely: wifi adapter, video cameras, bluetooth adapter, sound card.

When installing Linux on recent hardware, usually the UEFI should be enabled and the secure boot disabled. This can be tricky on some BIOSes. For example, when recently installed Linux on my daughter netbook, these setting was hidden very deep in the BIOS menus, so I first tried to install Linux by simply disabling UEFI and booting in so called "legacy mode". Unsuccessfully, because the hardware detection in this mode didn't work properly.

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Post 06 Jun 2017, 07:46
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revolution
When all else fails, read the source


Joined: 24 Aug 2004
Posts: 17248
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revolution
Thank you for the advice JohnFound.

I find the following disturbing: "Some problems with the following devices are possible, but not likely: wifi adapter ..."

I don't feel confident buying a system if I can't be sure the WiFi will work. One of my systems already can't use the WiFi in Linux so I know it can be a problem. And I would be very disappointed if I were to spend my money on a system and discover that some things can't be used. For this situation the entire purpose is to run Linux so having it unusable from day one would be awful.

So back to my original query. Does anyone know of a system that will work? And I mean aside from the costly systems sold with Linux as the OS.
Post 06 Jun 2017, 08:11
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
Posts: 8000
Location: 22° 15' N | 114° 10' E
YONG
JohnFound wrote:
revolution wrote:
None of the live versions work with my current hardware.
This can't be true, or you are doing something totally wrong. The recent Linux distributions work to some extent on every hardware, maybe except some very exotic one. Yes, some particular peripherals may not work sometimes, but as a whole, the OS should boot and operate more or less normally.
Even though I don't like revolution very much, I have to say that he/she is telling the truth. The major issue with any free distro of Linux is the lack of drivers, which is an indisputable fact. In particular, there is a one- to two-year "time gap" (or even longer) between the arrival of the latest hardware and the availability of driver support in a native distro of Linux. Sad but true.

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 08:22
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
Posts: 3500
Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
Maybe it is better you to list some laptops that fits your needs about hardware features and I to comment their compatibility with Linux.

For example, my current netbook is ASUS x102ba which looks like not Linux friendly (AMD video card), but in fact it works with Linux very well. Another device I know runs Linux great is my daughter netbook: ACER Aspire E3-112 (with increased to 8GB RAM).
Post 06 Jun 2017, 08:30
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
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Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
YONG wrote:
Sad but true.


Like AMD Ryzen that was released this spring and is already supported by Linux kernel?

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Post 06 Jun 2017, 08:34
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
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JohnFound
OK, trying to filter the offers on my local hardware distributor (https://ardes.bg) using revolution requirements, I found that the high price (less models) is not because of the Linux, but because of the pair "low weight"+"high display resolution".

The cheapest one is:

Acer Aspire V3-372 - 650€, but it is with 256GB SSD.

With lower performance, but seems to satisfy all requirements (except the removable battery) is:

HP EliteBook 840 G3: 900€; 14", 1920x1080 display; 500GB mechanical HDD; 8GB RAM; Intel processor and graphics.

Such system with removable battery seems to not exists at all, because of low-weight/high hardware requirements revolution specified.
Post 06 Jun 2017, 08:56
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revolution
When all else fails, read the source


Joined: 24 Aug 2004
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Location: In your JS exploiting you and your system
revolution
YONG wrote:
In particular, there is a one- to two-year "time gap" (or even longer) between the arrival of the latest hardware and the availability of driver support in a native distro of Linux.
Okay, we are getting somewhere.

Currently:
Intel CPU/graphics appear to have better support
Older systems appear to have better support

But still not enough to be sure of not being disappointed. Buying a system today and waiting one to two years for it to be usable is kind of risky IMO. And buying a system today and hoping (with fingers crossed) it is supported already today is also kind of risky also IMO.

So far there are still only the dedicated Linux systems on the table. The lowest risk factor in terms of compatibility, but higher risk factors in terms of build quality and robustness.
Post 06 Jun 2017, 09:18
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
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Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
revolution wrote:
But still not enough to be sure of not being disappointed.


Most hardware sellers have option for returning the computer if you are not satisfied, without any explanations. (in 1..4 weeks term). So, you can simply buy some computer, try to install Linux and if not satisfied, return it back and refund the money.

Anyway, reading your posts above, I want to say, that you definitely will need some time in order to master Linux. Linux is not "the poor man windows". It is totally different OS that need to be learned in order to be used the best way. The knowledge for Windows will rarely help and more often will confuse and irritate you not because Linux is worse, but because it is different.

This way, migrating to Linux with little effort and in short time is not possible at all. Of course the effort and time can vary, depending on what you want to do in Linux.

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Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:16
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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YONG
JohnFound wrote:
YONG wrote:
Sad but true.
Like AMD Ryzen that was released this spring and is already supported by Linux kernel?
Most of the time, those driver issues are not related to the CPU but the I/O devices, such as the display, keyboard, touchpad, and so on.

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:16
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revolution
When all else fails, read the source


Joined: 24 Aug 2004
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Location: In your JS exploiting you and your system
revolution
JohnFound wrote:
... you definitely will need some time in order to master Linux.
I'm not expecting to master Linux. I haven't even mastered Windows after all these years. But I would like to start on the right path, and at least have a working system as a base.


Last edited by revolution on 06 Jun 2017, 10:23; edited 2 times in total
Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:22
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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Location: 22° 15' N | 114° 10' E
YONG
For example, refer to the following review of Acer C740 Chromebook:

http://www.voltron00x.com/?p=649

Quote:
I installed 14.04 Unity, and experienced a number of issues:

- When first entering Ubuntu, the mouse cursor has a box-shaped graphical error around it

- Changing back to Chrome OS results in a totally disabled track pad

- Switching back to Ubuntu again resolves the cursor issue and things function more or less as expected

- Minecraft in-game performance was very good, but I had issues in the menus where there was tremendous lag for some reason

I also installed 14.04 XFCE and had more or less the same problems, so it isn’t just related to Unity. 3D graphic performance was not what I expected. This is related to issues with the graphics drivers, which can be resolved for devices running Broadwell Core i5 and i7 processors but has not yet been resolved (as of June 2015) for the Broadwell Celeron processor.

The issue with the track pad working fine in Ubuntu is why I’m confident the track pad problems in Chrome OS are software related and will be resolved by an OS update.
Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:22
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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Location: 22° 15' N | 114° 10' E
YONG
JohnFound wrote:
Such system with removable battery seems to not exists at all, because of low-weight/high hardware requirements revolution specified.
Really? That is hard to believe!

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:25
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
Posts: 3500
Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
YONG wrote:
Most of the time, those driver issues are not related to the CPU but the I/O devices, such as the display, keyboard, touchpad, and so on.


More precisely we can define it this way:

If not counting the cases where Linux developers reacts quick to the new hardware released, and not counting the cases where the new hardware is compatible with the old hardware and use the same drivers and not counting the cases where the new hardware requires pretty small changes in the drivers, we can conclude that the drivers support in Linux for the new hardware will be delayed for 2..3 years.

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Post 06 Jun 2017, 10:26
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Furs



Joined: 04 Mar 2016
Posts: 1466
Furs
It's also likely you'll find workarounds for common issues unless you use obscure exotic hardware. Such information is readily available by Googling, unlike Microsoft's useless tech support and noise you'll find because it's made for dummies who can't even use a mouse properly.

It's difficult to give revolution advice of "will it work?" when we don't even have the hardware in the first place and neither what exactly doesn't work if he does.
Post 06 Jun 2017, 11:07
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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Location: 22° 15' N | 114° 10' E
YONG
Furs wrote:
It's also likely you'll find workarounds for common issues unless you use obscure exotic hardware.
Really? Just take Acer C740 Chromebook as an example. It uses a very cheap, very common TN panel with standard resolution of 1366x768. Still, there are issues with the display driver.

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 12:18
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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Location: 22° 15' N | 114° 10' E
YONG
Furs wrote:
... when we don't even have the hardware in the first place
We will have to wait. Affordable hardware that meets his/her picky requirements should be available in or around 2023.

Be patient.

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 12:23
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
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JohnFound
YONG wrote:
It uses a very cheap, very common TN panel with standard resolution of 1366x768. Still, there are issues with the display driver.


As long as ChromeOS is actually Linux, what kind of issues can be there???

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Post 06 Jun 2017, 12:44
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YONG



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
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YONG
JohnFound wrote:
As long as ChromeOS is actually Linux, what kind of issues can be there???
You need some background information about crouton, which runs on top of Chrome OS.

Also check out GalliumOS.

Wink
Post 06 Jun 2017, 13:07
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JohnFound



Joined: 16 Jun 2003
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Location: Bulgaria
JohnFound
@YONG - you may mix up GNU and Linux. ChromeOS is Linux, but AFAIK is not GNU.
Post 06 Jun 2017, 14:07
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Furs



Joined: 04 Mar 2016
Posts: 1466
Furs
Yeah, Linux is the kernel which has the drivers (you can load external kernel modules for proprietary drivers though). A chroot definitely does not change the kernel or even run in kernel mode code (it does run with root privileges though) Wink

YONG wrote:
Really? Just take Acer C740 Chromebook as an example. It uses a very cheap, very common TN panel with standard resolution of 1366x768. Still, there are issues with the display driver.
You mean the video card? Since driver talks to the card (it's the card's job to talk to the panel). I googled and it uses "Intel HD Graphics" so I'm surprised it has issues. (though it didn't specify exact card, and I'm too lazy to look Razz)
Post 06 Jun 2017, 17:27
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