I have gone the wrong way about this, but it was affordable. Originally I thought that linux had come so far that installation would be a breeze... almost.
I wanted to build a new computer, and wanted to install linux. I decided to try both at the same time. As it was, I didn't know linux nor anything about compatibility issues. Presumption is the mother of all ...? So I have an ASRock Combo-z M-board, Sempron 3100 processor, 512MB Ram, a working hard drive, an MSI PC54G2 wireless networking card, and a NVIDIA Geforce TI4200 Graphics card. (It doesn't help that several parts are second hand; graphics, HD, ram, box/pwr supply, monitor).
OS: Fedora 3
1. MSI is a problem, I'll deal with that last, something to do with compiling a 3rd party driver, the main website where they claim they support linux is french. Google only gets me so far.
2. ASRock I don't think intended to support linux either, this might be causing most of my problems. For instance, no sound and my inability to know even where to start as to how to connect to the home network via ethernet. I'm very concerned I'm going to have to surrender and retreat back to the dark side so far as OS compatibility goes.
3. NVIDIA has a driver. I thought this would be the easiest of the problems to solve and I've been hacking at it for a week. Other people have had similar problems I've read about and that has gotten me someplace, I'm just at the end of my tether.
Getting to a terminal was almost worked out by myself. But the driver needs to be installed as root from a terminal with Xwindows killed somehow or other. Logging in as root was a stress.. I eventually found the solution (type in "su" and giving the root password) in an almost offhand comment somewhere on these forums (thankyou - more off hand comments needed like that to solve simple problems!). Killing x was harder, not least because of dozens of different solutions were being handed out which didn't actually kill the underlying thread, but it was done somehow (I forgot it but it's written down somewhere). The problem is that the NVIDIA driver still won't run - I need to install I think it is CC, the compiler program. I believe these programs are on the 3rd and 4th installation disks for Fedora, but don't know how to go about asking the machine to find and install them for me. Can anyone help?
So, there's my list of crises, any assistance is appreciated. I would like to know that the parts are not pointlessly incompatible with linux. I have Fedora running, but not networking or any idea actually what I need to find out before networking the computer.