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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


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Old 03-22-2004, 09:22 AM   #1
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Via CPUs

Has anyone ever tried running Linux on a system built around one of the Via proccessors? Either the Eden platform or the C3?

The reason that I ask if that Im considering building a linux box for use as a home entertainment system, playing CDs, DVDs, MP3s etc. Hopefully a minimalist linux instalation will be fairly light on resource usage.

I was thinking of using the Via C3 with a fast DVD and hard drive along with a large amount of RAM. In this case do you think the relatively low speed (1.2GHz) would be a problem for my intended use?

The plan is that I would be able to use the system in a Small form factor shuttle pc case beneath my TV. It should be very quiet given that the processor consumes a tiny amount of power compared to an Intel/AMD CPU so will run with no processor fan just a passive heatsink. Maybe just need for a low speed system fan.

Oh! so many questions! But Id like to hear about any experiences with this type of system...

Old 03-22-2004, 01:20 PM   #2
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I'm using an 800Mhz C3. Performance is about equal to a 500MHz P3. Only advice I can really give is to save your money on RAM and spend it on a fast video card instead. DVD playback is choppy with integrated video cards and enabling DMA doesn't help at all.
Old 03-22-2004, 01:39 PM   #3
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3dmike --

We have two configs at work:

primary client [browser / client] in mini-itx case, mounted on the wall
VIA M10000
Slimline CDROM
notebook 20GB HD
SuSE 9.0 / Windows XP Home

secondary server
VIA M10000
lite-on DVD-RW
2 80 GB Seagate 7200 RPM in RAID [mirror]
2 NIC [Heartbeat / HA]
SuSE 9.0
Jakarta Tomcat 5.0.19

The main difference in speed is with the hard drives. The notebook hds tend to be very very slow. And I would not use them for DVD playback or multimedia purposes unless you want to manually install / struggle with the appropriate drivers. You can do a search on the issues on to find out more on which mobo supports which distro / release.

As for my own opinions -- I've used VIA mini-itx mobos ever since its inception. I use one at home as a jukebox / carry-case storage box. It works fine in this regard but let me reiterate that the main issue is with the video drivers.

As for mutimedia small form factor boxes, there are several commecial products available. You can find some reviews on

hope this helps,



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