Preparing and Using a Hardware Inventory

Buying a turn-key Linux solution is one way to avoid hardware problems, and many vendors are standing by, ready to prescribe solutions. However, managing deployments aimed at using existing hardware requires some information collection.

If you are a small business or individual user, you are well advised to prepare detailed checklists of existing hardware before attempting a migration to Linux. Not only do you benefit from the collected information, but you might also be able to sidestep or anticipate problems before, during, or after installation. Problems are most likely to occur with newer hardware, cutting-edge hardware such as new motherboard chipsets and video cards, or extraneous hardware such as operating systemspecific scanners, printers, or wireless devices.

Table 2.2 provides a comprehensive checklist you can use to take inventory of target hardware, such as the computer and any peripherals. Veteran Linux users can take the collected information to build custom systems by adding known hardware or substituting cheaper but equivalent hardware.

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