Family Encyclopedia >> Electronics

How to Build a New PC for Linux

Often you will receive a recommendation that you should install Linux on an older PC. Thing is, Linux also works great on a new custom PC. Many users are looking for a brand new Linux PC for a home office, workstation, or other specialized uses. Here we tell you how to create a new PC for Linux.

Let's talk about hardware

Linux has excellent hardware compatibility, contrary to popular belief. However, just because the kernel can recognize the hardware and report what it is, doesn't mean there is a good driver. Always make sure there is some kind of working driver for the device you want to buy to make sure it will work.

CPUs and storage generally work very well, and most complex controls dealing with modern motherboards are built into firmware, but GPUs, peripherals, and Wi-Fi/Bluetooth cards (if you're interested) can be tricky at times. to work. with.

Graphics cards

Most integrated graphics in Intel/AMD processors work just fine. If you don't need a dedicated graphics card, the integrated graphics will work fine on Linux.

If you're looking to get an Nvida graphics card, you may have issues with its proprietary drivers. Although they work well, Nvidia engineers don't play well with the Linux kernel community, and this can make it difficult for Nvidia to integrate their drivers into the Linux kernel.

How to Build a New PC for Linux

Most keyboards and mice work just fine for basic functions. For anyone who isn't a gamer, you'll be fine with Logitech peripherals. They're part of the Linux vendor's firmware service, so the company's Unifying Receiver gets firmware updates on Linux and works extremely well. The MK545 Wireless Keyboard/Mouse Combo is an awesome choice for anyone with office or workstation workloads. For gamers, I would recommend Razer peripherals. The OpenRazer project has put a lot of work into making sure that Razer peripherals perform as well as you expect on Linux.

Wi-Fi Cards

Wi-Fi hardware has a long and storied history with Linux. This is one of the reasons laptops are so a pain, along with trackpads and function key actions.

How to Build a New PC for Linux

For all things networking, use Intel chipsets. Intel is friendly with the Linux community, so its Wi-Fi chipsets are generally supported. Avoid things like Broadcom chips, as they will require DKMS drivers which can be difficult to manage. All motherboards in the builds section below will have Intel Wi-Fi built-in. However, it should be mentioned that Ethernet will always be faster than Wi-Fi, which is recommended if possible.

Let's talk software

Specifically, distributions. There are generally two camps for Linux distros that work well with newer hardware:Ubuntu (and its derivatives) with Canonical's hardware-enabled stack, and distros with newer kernels, like Fedora, Vanilla Arch, and Manjaro .

Let's build a new pc for Linux

We'll be building three different PCs, actually:one for the home office, one for gaming, and one for workstation workloads, all three at different price points. This way, you can browse through the different hardware options and choose what you want for your PC version.

Note :All prices are in USD and are approximate as of October 2020. Your mileage may vary.

Home-desktop PC

  • CPU:Intel Core i5-10400
  • Motherboard:ASRock Z490M-ITX/ac
  • RAM:Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4 3200
  • Case:Fractal Design Node 202 with Integra SFX PSU
  • SSD:Western Digital Blue 500 GB SATA III
  • Approximate price:$600

This home desktop PC strikes the perfect balance between price and performance. You can make some choices that would increase system performance, but the idea here is that for a home office user, you don't really need a high performance system. All you really need is something small that does the job without being too slow. For $600, it's a perfect machine for that. It will excel at web browsing, content consumption, document processing, and even some very light gaming.

How to Build a New PC for Linux

Basically, if you don't have anything particularly demanding to do with your PC, this is the best choice for you. Pair it with whatever Ubuntu derivative you want, some Logitech peripherals, and a business-class monitor from a manufacturer like Spectre, and you've got a really cool system for your home office.

Gaming PC

  • CPU:AMD Ryzen 5 3600X
  • Motherboard:ASUS Prime X570-P
  • RAM:Corsair Vengeace LPX DDR4 3200
  • GPU:MSI Radeon RX 5600 XT or MSI GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER
  • SSD:Samsung 970 EVO PLUS 500 GB PCIe NVMe
  • Case:Cooler Master MasterBox MB511 ARGB
  • Power source:Corsair TX550M
  • Approximate price:$1000

This gaming PC is obviously not top of the line, but you can upgrade to more powerful components after building the rig. It will, however, work very well with many modern games. The 6-core processor and PCIe 4.0 GPU handle just about anything you can throw at it at 1080p and most games at 1440p, and with the cooling performance of the Cooler Master case, you won't have to worry about the intermediate level. frying components.

How to Build a New PC for Linux

Pair it with Pop! _OS or Manjaro, some gaming peripherals from Razer, and a reasonably high refresh rate of 1008p or 1440p monitor with AMD FreeSync or Nvidia GSync, and you've got a pretty good gaming rig.

PC Workstation

  • CPU:AMD Ryzen 9 3900X
  • Motherboard:ASUS AM4 TUF Gaming X570-Plus
  • RAM:32GB DDR4 3200 G.SKILL Ripjaws V-series
  • GPU:AMD Radeon Pro W5500
  • SSD:Samsung 970 EVO PLUS 1TB PCIe NVMe
  • Case:Meshify C ATX Fractal Design
  • Power source:Corsair TX550M
  • Approximate price:$1500

This workstation PC is designed to be an absolute powerhouse for most jobs. Obviously, if you need more power than that, you can upgrade. This is intended to serve as a starting point for your workstation builds. If you need a more powerful CPU or GPU, more RAM, or have specific storage or motherboard needs, you can swap out components to make this your workstation PC. ideal job.

How to Build a New PC for Linux

The 3rd Gen (and soon to be 5th Gen) Ryzen desktop processors are some of the most capable processors on the market. For desktop and productivity workloads, they are unprecedented. AMD Radeon Pro GPUs can be a bit of a wild card, but if you don't want to deal with Nvidia drivers, these are the best workstation cards available. All in all, this is an incredibly powerful PC for the money. Pair it with Fedora Workstation, some good monitors, a comfortable keyboard and mouse, and you'll be ready for any workstation workload you manage.

It's not hard to build a new PC for Linux – you just need to know the right tool for the job. If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check out some of our other Linux hardware content, like the best laptops for Linux, how to easily check hardware information in Linux, and how to build a Linux virtualization desktop.

ContentsLet's Talk HardwareGraphics CardsPeripheralsWi-Fi CardsLet's Talk SoftwareBuilding a New PC for LinuxHome Office PCGaming PCWorkstation PC