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Old 12-25-08, 07:37 AM   #1
Dr_C
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Default Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

The title line really says it – any advice on motherboards, based on the GeForce 8200, 8300, 9300 or 9400 to consider or avoid for linux?

The time has come to update my MythTV box, and I really like the idea of getting a motherboard with HDMI on-board (for 720p-level output) so I can add a second video card and still support standard-def composite output. Motherboards based on the GeForce 8200, 8300, 9300 or 9400 chipsets seem to fit the bill perfectly – in the short term, I would plan on getting a fast enough processor to drive the video, but eventually could use VPDAU acceleration.

However, the reviews of linux on these boards seem very mixed. For example:

BIOSTAR TForce TF8200: A poster in August of 2008 writes: “Not Linux friendly. I purchased the Biostar TF8200 A2+ with the intention of running Linux on it but ran into many, many problems. I tried Ubuntu, Gentoo, PCLinuxOS and Sabayon. . . the ALC888S audio does not work. . . For a Linux board, look elsewhere”

From December, there are frustrating reports of HDMI audio and analog audio not working at the same time for the ASUS P5N7A-VM (a GeForce 9300-based board). There are limited reports on the GIGABYTE GA-E7AUM-DS2H mobo (it’s GeForce 9400-based), but they sound promising – so that’s the board I would lean towards, at the moment.

I'm a quite capable linux sysadmin, so I'm not afraid of upgrading the kernel, rebuilding ALSA, etc. -- but if the drivers aren't 'there,' it won't be a happy experience!

What are others’ seeing?

Thanks!

-Dr. C.
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Old 12-25-08, 11:39 AM   #2
zim2dive
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_C View Post
The title line really says it – any advice on motherboards, based on the GeForce 8200, 8300, 9300 or 9400 to consider or avoid for linux?

The time has come to update my MythTV box, and I really like the idea of getting a motherboard with HDMI on-board (for 720p-level output) so I can add a second video card and still support standard-def composite output. Motherboards based on the GeForce 8200, 8300, 9300 or 9400 chipsets seem to fit the bill perfectly – in the short term, I would plan on getting a fast enough processor to drive the video, but eventually could use VPDAU acceleration.

However, the reviews of linux on these boards seem very mixed. For example:

BIOSTAR TForce TF8200: A poster in August of 2008 writes: “Not Linux friendly. I purchased the Biostar TF8200 A2+ with the intention of running Linux on it but ran into many, many problems. I tried Ubuntu, Gentoo, PCLinuxOS and Sabayon. . . the ALC888S audio does not work. . . For a Linux board, look elsewhere”

From December, there are frustrating reports of HDMI audio and analog audio not working at the same time for the ASUS P5N7A-VM (a GeForce 9300-based board). There are limited reports on the GIGABYTE GA-E7AUM-DS2H mobo (it’s GeForce 9400-based), but they sound promising – so that’s the board I would lean towards, at the moment.

I'm a quite capable linux sysadmin, so I'm not afraid of upgrading the kernel, rebuilding ALSA, etc. -- but if the drivers aren't 'there,' it won't be a happy experience!

What are others’ seeing?

Thanks!

-Dr. C.
I have spent the last month fighting to get my Acer X1200 (with nvidia 8200) working under Ubuntu (1st time user).

task #1 was to get audio over HDMI which means upgrading to alsa 1.0.18a
task #2 was to get 5.1 sound, which I think required moving to 177.82 nvidia driver (Ubuntu installs 177.80).. but I am not as certain this step was needed
task #3 (ongoing) is to make Flash performance acceptable... in Ubuntu I discovered one must turn off some appearance effect and that gets to where YouTube seems playable at full screen, BUT many other Flash sites still are only 1-3 fps at full screen (ie. The Daily Show, Hulu, etc).

Each of these tasks is easy in retrospect but has each been a week at researching, going down false paths, etc. A long frustrating experience which has greatly tarnished my image of both Adobe and nvidia.

So there is no way I could recommend the 8200 for linux at this point, further research, newer drivers may change that, but for now, it hasn't been pretty.

mplayer and vlc play very well at full screen with the 8200 tho.

In theory I could add an 8400 or 8500 and get some kind of performance boost, but its unclear to me whether that would have any impact on the Flash situation (and just have too many other unanswered questions as of yet about how the hybrid boost stuff works, esp under linux) (I would not want the additional graphics, I need the HDMI on the mobo 8200, just would potentially want the fps boost)

Hope that helps,
Mike
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Old 12-26-08, 12:35 AM   #3
Dr_C
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

Thanks for sharing your experience with a GeForce 8200 motherboard. They seem problematic under linux.

I had been leaning towards a motherboard with a GeForce 9400 chipset, but looking at nvidia's 'supported GPUs' list in their latest driver seems to indicate this chipset does not yet have support!

Anyone having a good experience with any of these latest motherboards?

-Dr. C.
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Old 12-26-08, 01:54 PM   #4
mehukatti
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

I have Asus P5N7A-VM with onboard GeForce 9300. Both digital and analog audio work out of the box with FC10 and latest updates (e.g. alsa 1.0.18). For digital output, I use the optical SPDIF output on back of the system. I also tried Asus "SPDIF OUT COAX/OPT" board that I used with my previous Asus Mobo, but couldn't get it to work with the header (3 pin connector) on the Mobo. HDMI is something that I haven't tried at all, because Asus states that one can't use DVI and HDMI at the same time due to a chipset limitation. Basically the only negative issues with this board (atleast in my opinion) are the following.. The GPU runs pretty hot with the default heatsink and if you have a CPU heatsink/fan combo that doesn't provide much airflow to it, the system may crash due to GPU overheating. This happened to me after I switched from the default Intel CPU heatsink/fan to Noctua NH-U9B and trying Quake Wars. As a solution to this, I'm going to replace the GPU heatsink with Noctua NC-U6. The other negative issues are 2D related performance problems with the current stable Nvidia driver (there's a thread about this problem) even when applying all the quick fixes.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:27 AM   #5
vblanche
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

Hi,

I have this gygabyte mobo and I'm currently frustrated.

running under kubuntu8.10 64bit, drivers 180.16 and instability problem + resolution not yet correct/optimal.

I'm connected via hdmi to my lcd tv sony 40w4000, i don't have sound yet...

and finally I'm newbie in linux, so quite frustrated even with the help/advices of few forum members that are taking time to help...

I'm quite tempting to revert to windows XP...
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Old 01-20-09, 02:14 PM   #6
ckidji
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Arrow Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

Hi,
Newbie on linux and having the GA-E7AUM-DS2H, I am not able to set the driver on Ubuntu 32 bit. The 180.22 nvidia driver was not working. Only 800x600 with vesa for the moment:(.
Sound is ok.:)
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Old 01-21-09, 10:02 AM   #7
jpterj
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

I just bought components to put together a PC for testing VDPAU. I am using an Asus M3N78-EM motherboard which I am very pleased with. I am using OpenSuse 11.0 and the only thing needed for getting sound via HDMI working was to install latest Nvidia driver and upgrade alsa to 0.1.18.
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Old 01-21-09, 10:24 AM   #8
jayman8547
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Default Re: Linux-friendly GeForce 8200/8300 or 9300/9400 motherboard?

I have an ASUS M3N78-VM and I have audio and video over HDMI working. I know I get 2 channel stereo and 5.1 but that's all my plasma supports. Mythtv works great watching live and recorded tv, playing DVD iso's and I am working on Blu-ray playback right now. Once the VDPAU drivers get refined a bit I have no doubt it will work great. I had some issues booting diskless so I connected a 4GB SDHC card to one of the back usb ports and that's what I run Mythbuntu from.
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