Linux on Optiplex GX270? (OT)

Jason Lasker lasker at
Mon Oct 27 07:55:01 CST 2003

We have 5 labs with 100+ Dell GX260(Tower) and GX270 (SFF) running Red Hat
9.  The 260s have ATI cards the 270s have NVIDIA.  Things to look out for
with respect to Linux specifically RH9.

1.  Get the Intel gigabit card  it's easier to deal with.
2.  Some combinations of DVI cards and analog monitors do not behave
properly when the X-server starts.  The best thing is to be consistent with
the connection type, either all analog or all digital.
3.  Make sure your choice of sound card is compatible.

Jason Lasker
Senior Programmer Analyst/Systems Administrator
University at Buffalo
Science and Engineering Node Services
113 Bell Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260-2050
Voice 716-645-3797 x2172
Fax    716-645-3704
email mailto:lasker at

-----Original Message-----
From: linux-poweredge-admin at [mailto:linux-poweredge-admin at]
On Behalf Of jason andrade
Sent: Monday, October 27, 2003 7:12 AM
To: Ed Martin
Cc: linux-poweredge at
Subject: Re: Linux on Optiplex GX270? (OT)

On Mon, 27 Oct 2003, Ed Martin wrote:

> I know this is off topic for a PE group, but I bet the answer is out 
> there.  So, sorry for the diversion, I'll keep it short.
> We are considering buying some Optiplex GX270 desktops, and would like 
> to run Linux on them.  I know that Dell won't support this.  But is 
> anyone running Linux on one of these?  If so is it working ok?  What 
> distribution/kernel?

dell support linux on the gx270 AFAIK.  RHEL3/WS - i don't know if they'll
sell you RHL9 on it still.  it'd be interesting to ask.

> We'd ideally like to run Red Hat Enterprise Linux WS (v3).  But Red 
> Hat 9 would be OK, also some flavour of Debian.  Or even Mandrake!

RHEL3/WS is your best bet as it supports the SATA drives of the GX270 'out
of the box'.  RH9 may not install on the box but will run with the latest
errata kernel once you have patched the installer.  it appears the default
kernel does not support SATA and the GX270 has no facility to switch the
drives from enhanced to legacy mode for the install process (the workaround
in most cases).



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