[clug] Building a database of linux compatible hardware

Robert Edwards bob at cs.anu.edu.au
Thu Jun 22 23:57:59 GMT 2006

My proposal is to have a site devoted to "local" suppliers and
hardware compatibility - for various definitions of "local", in
particular Canberra/Southern NSW specific, but maybe Australia-wide.

Why? Well the Internet makes the global market a sort of reality,
but if local suppliers could see that the Linux-compatibility of
their stock and their Linux friendliness actually matter, then
maybe they would "compete" with each other for recognition.

Also, if I buy something and get it working with Linux, say a
a DVB (Digital Video Broadcast aka Digital TV Tuner) card, then
others can see where I got it from and can ask me for help in
getting it working on their setup.

Is there a big enough selection in Canberra/Southern NSW? I think
so. There are a number of small computer stores such as the 7 Star
Tech shop on ANU campus, who can get in all sorts of weird and
wonderful hardware. Then there is Harris Technology, Jaycar, Dick
Smith, Harvey Norman, JB Hifi etc. etc. all selling MP3 players,
digital cameras, mobile phones, printers, laptops, PDAs, scanners
etc. etc.

So, I am planning to implement a web-based database (probably on
the IBM boxes) which allows me to easily input what I bought, from
where, how "Linux-friendly" the staff were, whether or not I could
get it working with which distro, kernel version etc. and links to
any other sites I found with Howtos, experiences etc.

So, anyone else in the area wanting to buy, eg. an inkjet printer,
can look that up and see that 6 others bought printer X from supplier
Y and got it working on distro Z with little or no problems.

I'm thinking about trying to integrate it into the existing PostNuke
site on the clug.anu.edu.au server, so using the existing user info
for people wanting to submit entries - but I am still considering if
this is the "right way" to do it.


Bob Edwards.

David Tulloh wrote:
> An issue that Bob has raised several times now is the need for a
> database of linux compatible hardware.  I made some comments on a few
> sites out there, I found all of these with a quick search.
> http://www.linuxhardwaredatabase.net/
> No actual site, just a placeholder.
> http://hardwaredb.suse.de/
> Poor interface, Suse specific, no driver information
> http://www.mandriva.com/hardware
> Only detail is a specified Mandrake kernel.
> http://www.linuxcompatible.org/
> User contributed, hardware is rated out of 5, details are scarce and all
> in the comments.  Interface is cluttered.
> I think that these sites are far from perfect.  However for the purposes
> of checking a piece of hardware against the list or choosing a
> compatible component, they seem to be fine.
> Are these sites enough, or have I missed the point?
> David

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