Since being let go by Novell last year where he worked on the RadeonHD Linux graphics driver and X.Org support within SuSE Linux, Luc Verhaegen has continued work on his VIA Unichrome DDX driver as well as other X.Org code and he has also become involved with the CoreBoot project that aims to create a free software BIOS for most chipsets and motherboards on the market. Luc has worked on support for flashing the BIOS on ATI graphics cards, native VGA text mode support, and other work to help the CoreBoot project. Today at FOSDEM in Brussels, Luc Verhaegen is about to give a talk on reverse engineering a motherboard BIOS.
6 February 2010 - 25 Comments
Over the years at Phoronix there have been reviews on many Tyan motherboards for desktops, servers, and workstations. The build quality of these motherboards have always been very good; after all, Tyan has been around for two decades and their workstation/server products must be very dependable if they wish to maintain their premiere position within the industry. The Linux compatibility with the motherboards has also been generally quite good due to its dominant use on their operating systems. As our first Tyan review for 2010 we are looking at the S2915 n6650W and S2927 n3600B motherboards. Both motherboards are designed for AMD's Opteron 2000 series processors and have a similar feature set, but there are a few key differences between these two high-end workstation motherboards.
1 February 2010 - 5 Comments
Back in September we published a launch-day Linux preview of Intel's Lynnfield processors and provided Core i5 / Core i7 benchmarks. With that initial testing of the Lynnfield processors and the new Intel P55 Chipset we had used an Intel DP55KG "Kingsberg" motherboard, but since then many P55 motherboards from different vendors have flooded the market. One of the P55 motherboards to be introduced for the budget-conscious consumer is the P55H-A, which comes from ECS Elitegroup. This motherboard is very reasonably priced while offering support for up to DDR3-2200MHz memory (in an overclock mode), solid capacitors, dual PCI Express x16 slots, and S/PDIF audio support.
6 November 2009 - 5 Comments
Back in March the open-source ATI Linux driver had gained support for an unreleased IGP known as the RS880, months before it would end up on the market and become known as the AMD 785G Chipset. The open-source support is there for this integrated graphics processor and motherboard chipset, along with the proprietary support through the Catalyst Linux driver, and there is even chipset documentation to help the CoreBoot developers. With the 785G being the latest (and likely last) ASIC in the AMD 700 series, we decided to look at the ECS A785GM-M motherboard. The A785GM-M from Elitegroup Computer Systems is affordable and offers a nice set of features for being a micro ATX motherboard.
5 October 2009 - 13 Comments
This morning Intel has introduced their new mainstream desktop chipset, the Intel P55, and has brought forth the Core i5 processor family along with new Core i7 processors for use with this new chipset and socket. Intel sent us out a review kit of this new hardware so we are already able to comment on its Linux compatibility. In this article we are talking specifically about the Intel P55 and its Linux compatibility with regard to the Intel DP55KG motherboard while in the next article we have Ubuntu Linux benchmarks using an Intel Core i5 750 and Core i7 870.
8 September 2009 - 2 Comments
Back in April we reviewed the ASRock X58 SuperComputer and found it to be a phenomenal motherboard for use with Intel Core i7 processors. While ASRock is regarded as being a budget manufacturer, this affordable Intel X58 motherboard could overclock quite far, ran well with Linux, and offered a great set of features. While that was a very nice Intel product, how are ASRock's current offerings on the AMD side? In this review we have our hands on the ASRock M3A780GXH/128M to see how well this AM3 Socket motherboard with a 780G + SB710 Chipset performs under Linux.
26 June 2009 - 6 Comments
Linux hardware support has improved a great deal over the past few years, but there are still a few troubled spots. With computer motherboards, for instance, the core functionality is generally there and most consumer motherboards will "just work" with the latest desktop Linux distributions out there. Where users though can run into problems are with the ancillary features. Motherboard manufacturers usually bundle proprietary software with their products that allow monitoring of hardware sensors, flashing of the motherboard BIOS, and overclocking all from within the Windows operating system. With the exception of LM_Sensors providing some sensors support, this is a grey area for Linux. Fortunately, however, the folks working on the CoreBoot project have developed a program that will near universally allow you to flash your motherboard's BIOS from within the Linux desktop.
4 May 2009 - 47 Comments
As we have noted before, ASRock continues to step up the capabilities of their products and with each new iteration of motherboards we see more feature-rich, enthusiast-oriented products from this cost-oriented company. With the current global economy, more consumers will be looking for more cost effective products, which places ASRock in a prime position. One of the cheapest Intel X58 motherboards on the market is the ASRock X58 SuperComputer, which has a number of exciting features but at a lower cost. In this article today we are seeing how well the ASRock X58 SuperComputer runs with Linux.
27 April 2009 - 2 Comments
Years ago when we started reviewing ASRock motherboards, most of them were fairly basic with very few features compared to what could be found on the ASUS or Gigabyte motherboards. With time though ASRock has begun ramping up their motherboards with more features, new innovative designs, and other improvements that cater towards the desires of enthusiasts and gamers. These days there are ASRock motherboards that can compete with those from major OEMs both in terms of features and in terms of performance, while delivering a better price. One example of a modern, feature-rich ASRock motherboard is the N7AD-SLI. The ASRock N7AD-SLI has NVIDIA SLI support, Gigabit LAN, IEEE-1394 Firewire, S/PDIF output, OC Tuner, solid capacitors, and an instant boot technology. This motherboard is centered around NVIDIA's nForce 740i SLI Chipset.
4 March 2009 - 16 Comments
Tyan, a long-time supporter of Phoronix and a manufacturer of many leading workstation/server-oriented motherboards, recently sent out their Thunder n6650EX motherboard. This motherboard is a slight redesign of their earlier Thunder n6550EX product, but with out of the box support for AMD's 45nm Opteron CPUs. The Thunder n6650EX is capable of handling four quad-core processors, up to 128GB of ECC Registered DDR2 system memory, dual PCI Express x16, and six Serial ATA 2.0 ports. In this article we are offering a preview of the Tyan Thunder n6650EX (S4992).
13 February 2009 - 5 Comments
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