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855 posts

Ultimate Geek

# 176950 17-Jul-2015 07:42
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I just received a new desktop for work. It's a corporate standard thing - everyone gets one of these.

It's a nice machine but the Intel network chip on the mobo does not work with a standard Linux distro.

I know that I could get the chip manufacturer's Linux code and build a driver but I do not want to do that.

I need to install new Linux distros on a regular basis - a partner company releases new hardware and the cross compilers require a different distro because they require a particular version of the C runtime library or something else like that. I have no way to avoid that.

What I am looking for is a network card with a chipset that will just work out of the box on any of the common Linux distros.

It has to be low profile too. (PCI express)

I saw a card at pb-tech but when I googled the realtek chipset on that card, I found a number of people saying that it too needed an extra device driver. I'd also like to avoid a card with an Intel chip.

Can anyone recommend a card which can be bought in NZ and which will meet my requirements? I could go for something from Amazon or aliexpress but corporate buying procedures mean that I will have an easier time if I can get the card locally.

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3803 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 1345914 17-Jul-2015 08:46
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Intel is pretty much the standard for compatability, so I wouldn't hold my breath.

Information wants to be free. The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it.

3344 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1345917 17-Jul-2015 08:48
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Why not install your preferred linux distro on the bare metal and then put the "alternative distro" in a  Virtual Machine?


234 posts

Master Geek

  # 1345918 17-Jul-2015 08:50
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As a root user at the command prompt type

lspci -k

Read through the output to find the make and model of your network card.

An alternative to discover the driver is to download resecuecd which is a live CD which specialises in low level system diagnostic and recovery. Boot using the rescuecd and run the same command as above.

Obsequious hypocrite


2 posts

Wannabe Geek

  # 1346686 18-Jul-2015 12:47
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Intel EXPI9301CT CT Desktop Ethernet Adapter, 10/100/1000 Mbps, PCI Express. I picked up a few of those from Ascent last year to use in development and test PCs at work that I need to dual interface. So far they have worked in everything I have tied Linux bar one very non-standard WAN testing distro.

234 posts

Master Geek

  # 1346772 18-Jul-2015 14:48
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This forum post looks as if it may be helpful;

Go to  --> Network and Security, enter topic 854368 in the search box.

Obsequious hypocrite

855 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 1351036 24-Jul-2015 10:22
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Thanks for all the advice guys.

I looked at the Intel card that kgh suggested but none of my local stores had stock.

In the end I went for a TP Link TG 3468 card. It uses a Realtek chip and I saw quite a few notes around the net which suggested good stuff with that card and a range of Linux distros.

I bought it from etc computers who I found on trademe. I phoned them up to confirm availability of a low profile bracket and then, by the time I drove over, they had swapped the brackets round for me! Good service.

The card went in and just worked right away.

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