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Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Sun Oct 09, 2005 1:46 pm
by Molten
Hello everyone,

I wonder if you could recommend -as compatible- the small form factor setup from IWill Computers [see their products here: ] as a purely able to run Linux machine. I'm not at all attached to any one distribution, and actually I'd be more inclined to be able to boot several on one machine. But I would really like to buy a new system that from the motherboard up would be compatible with Linux. I spotted this company's products last week and fell head over for what looks like some brilliant engineering.

Trouble is, I'm pretty green when it comes to running Linux, greener still on the command line, and whatever experience i've gotten so far has been short-lived and invariably derailed due to driver conflicts, available hardware being called upon to tackle other OS's and the like. I've been tinkering- mostly unsuccessfully with the hardware I've got [mostly Mac] but now it's time to buy something dedicated....

Does anyone have any prior experience with this companies products? Or, can you by looking at the hardware specs. tell if there would be serious issues running Linux, or not?

Thanks in advance for any insights...

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Mon Oct 10, 2005 10:57 pm
by Molten
2 days, 20 views and no responses.... <sniff, sniff>

Does that mean NO one has experience with the IWill small form factor?

Say, maybe that's a learning opportunity!!! Special issue on small form factors here we come! ;-)

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2005 1:07 pm
by dandnsmith
I'm not getting anything from the iwill site - perhaps that's why no comment

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2005 12:13 pm
by Molten
^ It was working when I originally posted this. Then not working when I read your post and double checked their site. But then working again yesterday again. So today, i was going to post it was up and running, went to double check and it was down again.

Then I went and tried several other vendors sites for small form factor hardware [all in Taiwan] and they were down as well. I don't get it....

To complicate matters further, the IWill USA site was also down when this site [at the URL above] was down.

The one I'm really keen on is the ZPC64 [hopefully found at this URL]:

The specs on this system can be found at a couple of other sites, such as: ... 0&id=12274
and this site:
Which, if you follow the "Documents" link there, will bring up the factory manual, a life-sized .jpg and some other stuff on the unit

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2005 12:16 pm
by Molten
Heck with it, I might as well post the specs here!

ZPC64 Specifications

Supports AMD Athlon 64 CPU with 754 PGA
1600MHz HyperTransport Bus
Supports AMD Athlon 64 up to 3400+
Drive Bay:
One 3.5" drive bay for IDE HDD Or Two 2.5" drive bay for IDE HDDs
One internal drive bay for slim line optical driver
nVIDIA nForce 3 150 MCP
TI IEEE1394 Host Controller
NV MAC + Realtek RTL8201BL PHY
Six USB 2.0 Offer up to 480MB/s
Four USB 2.0 external ports on front panel
Two USB 2.0 external ports on rear panel
System memory:
DDR400/333 SDRAM Support; Unbuffer DDR SDRAM
Total memory slots: two DIMM
Maximum memory expansion: 2GB
Expansion Slot:
One AGP 8X slot available
One Mini-PCI slot
One AGP 8X slot available
AGP 8x; Version 3.0 compliant
AGP 4x/2x Version 2.0 compliant
nVidia 10/100 Ethernet MAC
Realtek RTL8110S
Rear Panel I/O:
USB 2.0: Six (4 front and 2 rear)
FireWire (1 front and 1 rear)
Headphone: One (front)
Line Out: Two (1 front and 1 rear)
Line in: Two (one front, one rear)
Serial: Two (rear)
PS/2 Keyboard: One (rear)
PS/2 Mouse: One (rear)
RJ45: One (rear)
6 Channel Audio utilizes the Realtek ALC655 codec
Line in/ Speaker/ Mic on rear panel
Earphone/ Mic on front panel
SPDIF optical audio In and Out
Power Supply: 180 Watt power supply with ATX specification
Dimension: H: 245 mm x W: 75 mm x D: 355 mm

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2005 7:58 pm
by wyliecoyoteuk
Well, I`m running Suse10/64 on an Nforce chipset with an Athlon 64 3200+ (socket 939).
I`m using a Realtek NIC because Windoze won`t work with the onboard Marvell NIC!
(Suse does).
The only thing is, I believe that socket 754 is close to being discontinued, which is why I went for a socket 939 mobo (and I wanted a SATA drive).
That doesn't mean that it isn't a great machine, We run a couple of socket 754 semprons at work, and they are nice, fast pcs.

RE: Linux on IWill small form factor

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2005 8:11 pm
by wyliecoyoteuk
Oh, and my wife`s SFF MSI megaPC uses a Realtek sound chipset, think that it's an ALC655, and that works fine, although the TV tuner doesn`t work at all with linux (it's pretty poor in windoze)

The Iwill looks cool.

PC hardware in general is more and more likely to work with linux "out of the box" these days, and the specs on that unit seem pretty commonly avaialble.