I'm looking to build a cheap linux box to begin my journey into learning linux more indepth.
I'm looking for something small and cheap. My workstation is huge and i'd like sometihng to be not as big and heavy as that.
I'm looking at the Mini-PC's as a solution.
I'd like to stay away from athlon xp's as it's old technology.
So either athlon 64 or pentium 4. Slowest speed possibly for both. I think for the pentium it's 2.4ghz and athlon is what, 2800+? which ever is cheaper. I have a dvd-rom, i just need to get a hard drive for it and thats all i need. I can download linux for free.
So from experience or what you have read yourself what would you recommend?
AMD 2800+ aren't A64, only AXP. Since you said you want to stay away from them, you can get it. 3000+ speed are only avaible for A64 and its more expensive then P4, 2.4ghz p4 is about 60 or 70 USD chepear and lowest price A64 3000. Also I believe A64 mini PC barebone would cost more than P4. If you want something cheap just get P4!
This is a tough question. You say you dont want old technology, but the p4, especailly soemhting like the p4 2.4ghz is just as 'old' as an athlon xp 2500+ or even the 2800+. If what you want is a cheap linux box as you say, I see no reason why youd want to avoid the ahtlon xp chips. You can get a 2800+ for 30 dollars less then the 2.8ghz p4 and the 2500+ is 40-50 dollars cheaper then the p4 2.4ghz.
If its to learn Linux, there really is no point in getting anything faster than the slowest cpu you can find. I'm experimenting with suse and mandrake on a P2-266. rougly 10x slower than a XP. Given enough ram and a somewhat up do date harddisk, it performs okay. If I where you, I'd look for a cheap second hand, look for a SFF or pizza box in the 1 Ghz range or so. Should cost close no nothing; and more than fast enough.
If you want something "new" technology, you could consider a A64 3000+, as with Linux you'll have the opportunity to make good (well..) use of its capabilities, but it would be massive overkill for just getting your feet wet in Linux.
One more thing; though I don't see how performance would matter initially to you, note that AMD and P3 based cpu's tend to perform a better under Linux than windows compared to netburst cores. Probably due to GCC being sub optimal, and P4 needing better compilers to stretch its muscle, but that doesnt make it any less true.
= The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my wife. =