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Old 12-11-2012, 12:17 PM   #1
tacitus585
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Socket AM3+ , AMD 990FX/SB950 Chipset Motherboards, compatibility?


Anyone have experience with linux compatibility on any of the socket AM3+, AMD990FX/SB950 chipset motherboards ($150-160 price range)? In the absence of direct experience with one of the boards, I'd definitely be interested in hearing any biases against Asrock, Asus, MSI, or Gigabyte if they are known to have compatibility issues with Linux on an ongoing basis. I'll almost certainly be using an Ubuntu distro, likely Mint, but I'm flexible so long as I can be done with Microsoft ;-)

Below is a list of some of the boards I've been considering from different manufacturers:
Asrock 990fx Extreme4
Asus M5A99FX Pro R.2.0
Gigabyte GA-990-FXA-UD5
MSI 990FXA-GD80V2

I've been scouring the internet for compatibility experiences, but not coming up with any user info for these AMD990FX boards. Searched the HCL here in these forums and also on the linux mint site too, but also nothing. Any input is much appreciated, thanks :-)
 
Old 12-11-2012, 01:42 PM   #2
TobiSGD
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I use a mainboard with 990X chipset and works without any problems on Slackware 14, so it should run on any recent distribution. The 990FX is not that different, I don't expect problems there.
Regarding the brand of the board, based on my experience I personally prefer ASUS and Gigabyte, since they seem to have better quality in general.
 
Old 12-16-2012, 03:56 AM   #3
cascade9
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You've got to ask yourself is the 990FX is worth the extra money over a 990X or 970 chipset board. For most users they arent, the only time that 990FX chipsets are really 'needed' is for 3x/4x multipule GPU setups (crossfire or SLI), mostly used with expensive 'gamers' computers.

MSI I wont touch with a bardgepole. Too many problems, and I've had MSI change the specs on parts a few times as well (eg, I've got an MSI 790X chipset board. When I bought it is was rated for 125watt TDP CPUs, MSI later decided that is should be li9mited to 95watt TDP CPUS......).

Asrock was 'spun off' from Asustek (Asus) in the early 2000s to compete with other OEMs. A few years later they moved into making retail components (mostly motherboards). While Asrock is probably about as good as Asus now, they are still seen by many as a 'lower end version of asus'. I havent had any major issues with the few asrock boards I've used with linux.

I like the gigabyte boards a little more than asus. Personal preference mostly.

IMO from worst to best MSI-> Asrock-> Asus-> Gigabyte.
 
Old 12-16-2012, 05:30 PM   #4
tacitus585
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Well, I'm pleased to say that I have a motherboard in my new system and it installed and works perfectly with Linux Mint. BUT, I am not so pleased to say that my girlfriend went ahead and purchased this board without asking me, so our new computer has the Asrock 990FX Extreme4 board in it. I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed that the build quality will be one that lasts.

One good thing about the Extreme4 was the onboard IDE header, so we could use some of our older harddrives and Dvd drives without having to buy a separate $20-$25 controller card. I'm kind of baffled why motherboard manufacturers have so quickly done away with onboard IDE support since there are still tons of these older devices still alive and kickin'.

I was definitely leaning towards the Gigabyte board especially with the nods that both Tobi and Cascade had given to the Gigabyte brand above, but my quick on the draw, "better half" bought the Asrock before I could even get my gun out of the holster ;-)

(I was very surprised that the total installation time for Linux mint only took 20 minutes, including downloading and installing all updates immediately after install. A Windows 7 Pro install I did on a family member's system with similarly performing hardware took 3.5 hours to get to that same point.)

Asrock 990FX Extreme4 Motherboard
AMD FX-6200 3.8GHz 6 core CPU
Sapphire Radeon HD5450 Graphics Card
Crucial Ballistix 4GB SDRAM DDR3 1866

Last edited by tacitus585; 12-16-2012 at 05:40 PM. Reason: Added my list of linux mint compatible build components
 
Old 12-21-2012, 08:25 AM   #5
cascade9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tacitus585 View Post
BUT, I am not so pleased to say that my girlfriend went ahead and purchased this board without asking me, so our new computer has the Asrock 990FX Extreme4 board in it. I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed that the build quality will be one that lasts.
Once you've got some part, I wouldnt worry about it being asrock, asus, gigabyte or anything else.

How long any given part lasts is not just related to branding...usage patterns, operating enviroment, etc. matters. Even then sometimes its just luck.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by tacitus585 View Post
One good thing about the Extreme4 was the onboard IDE header, so we could use some of our older harddrives and Dvd drives without having to buy a separate $20-$25 controller card. I'm kind of baffled why motherboard manufacturers have so quickly done away with onboard IDE support since there are still tons of these older devices still alive and kickin'.
IDE is not supported from the SB8XX southbridges used in (most) 8XX chipsets or later. So if a manufacturer wants to have IDE support with 8XX/SB8XX chipsets or later they need an extra controller chip.

SATA has been around for long enough that dropping IDE support is not really an issue IMO.
 
  


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