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Linux+: Linux Install 02 – Linux requirements

Discussion in 'Installation' started by Jarret W. Buse, Apr 14, 2014.

  1. Jarret W. Buse

    Jarret W. Buse Well-Known Member Staff Writer

    Jul 3, 2013
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    Linux+: Linux Install 02 – Linux requirements

    Although Linux has support for most hardware, each distro can be different. General hardware can be considered supported for all distros, such as:

    • Keyboard
    • Mouse
    • Motherboard: PCI
    • Motherboard: ISA
    • Motherboard: EISA
    • Motherboard: VLB
    • Port: USB
    • Port: FireWIRE
    • Port: Parallel Port
    • Port: Serial Port
    • Others
    We can look at the hardware requirements for the following three Linux distros:

    • Ubuntu
    • CentOS
    • Linux Mint

    NOTE: Each distro has a different requirement and even when a new version is released the minimum requirements can change.

    The requirements listed are the minimum. It is best to have hardware that exceeds the minimum requirements. There is a difference between required and recommended hardware needed. Required is the minimum needed for the Linux distro to function. The recommended hardware is what is preferred so the Linux OS functions better. For example, a required CPU speed of 700 MHz is required and may cause the OS to bog down. A system may have a recommended CPU speed of 1.5 GHz and will function much better with a CPU of this speed or higher.


    The following minimum requirements for the Ubuntu Desktop Edition are posted on the Ubuntu website at:

    · 700 MHz processor (about Intel Celeron or better)
    · 512 MB RAM (system memory)
    · 5 GB of hard-drive space (or USB stick, memory card or external drive but see LiveCD for an alternative approach)
    · VGA capable of 1024x768 screen resolution
    · Either a CD/DVD drive or a USB port for the installer media
    · Internet access is helpful for updates

    The minimum hardware requirements for the Ubuntu Server Edition (posted on the same page) is:

    · 300 MHz x86 processor
    · 192 MiB of system memory (RAM)
    · 1 GB of disk space
    · Graphics card and monitor capable of 640x480
    · CD drive


    The following are the minimum requirements for Linux CentOS 6:

    · 2.4 GHz processor (recommended)
    · 1 GB RAM per CPU
    · 12 GB of hard-drive space
    · VGA capable of 1024x768 screen resolution
    · CD/DVD drive
    · Internet access is helpful for updates

    NOTE: Red Hat recommends a processor speed of 2.4 GHz or more. This is not the minimum, but documentation is scarce on this point. CentOS and Red Hat Linux are virtually the same.

    Linux Mint

    The requirements here are for the Linux Mint with Cinnamon and are as follows:

    · 700 MHz processor
    · 512 MB RAM
    · 5 GB of hard-drive space
    · VGA capable of 800x600 screen resolution
    · CD/DVD drive
    · Internet access is helpful for updates

    NOTE: It is best to try to exceed the minimum requirements when possible. When a system has the minimum requirements the system may seem slow. Slow systems can cause frustration when trying to perform too many tasks or run an intensive application.

    It should be noted that the system should be bootable from the CD/DVD drive. The ISO images of the Linux distros can be downloaded and burned to a CD/DVD and then booted from the burned disk.

    NOTE: Information on downloading ISO images can be found at the article Linux Install 01 – Types and Downloading.

    The above minimum requirements can vary for the type of system, especially servers. For desktop systems, a Linux Operating System (OS) that will be used to manage files such as pictures or videos would require a much larger Hard Disk Drive (HDD). Systems on which video editing and the like would most likely need a larger HDD as well as a higher resolution graphics card with a high amount of Video RAM (VRAM).

    Server systems can have more hardware requirements than necessary depending on their function. For most, more Hard Disk Drive (HDD) space is required and Random Access Memory (RAM). Examples are: Web Servers, File Servers, Database Servers and Mail Servers. Any Server would function better with a faster Network interface Card (NIC) which is supported by the cabling. For Wireless networks a higher bandwidth Wireless device would help achieve better efficiency. Print Servers would require a specific number of printer connections unless the printer is connected directly to the network and not a server. Any server which requires a lot of throughput would be better to have a faster Central Processing Unit (CPU) as well as more RAM.

    NOTE: It seems that servers with a high number of clients accessing it operate better with more RAM and possibly a faster CPU.

    Servers such as a CD/DVD Server would require a specific number of slots for adding CD/DVD drives as well as connections to the motherboard. In this case, Small Computer Systems Interface (SCSI) (or another link here)would allow for a higher amount of devices to be attached, even if external.

    NOTE: There are CD/DVD towers which is a stand-alone housing for SCSI devices which has a NIC and can be connected to the network to allow sharing of a large amount of CD/DVD drives.

    Attached Files:

    ZHANG/ZHIKUN and DevynCJohnson like this.

    ZHANG/ZHIKUN New Member

    Aug 22, 2014
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    Server requirs less source than desktop, and more client may msake it perform better?
  3. Jarret W. Buse

    Jarret W. Buse Well-Known Member Staff Writer

    Jul 3, 2013
    Likes Received:
    If I understand what you are asking, the server does have less hardware requirements. This is due to the server not requiring a GUI or the need to have a user running apps local on it. Depending on the requirement of the server and the number of clients, the hardware may need to be more powerful. In a company setting with hundreds of users, the server should definitely be more powerful. For a small business with a dozen or less client systems, the server does not need the power to support the few client systems.

    I hope this clears up the matter. If not, please let me know.

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