Intel or Realtek NIC / Linux compatibility

Hello Forum, can you help me to decide? All suggestions and feedback are welcome.

I’m searching for a new motherboard, chipset would be AM4 B550 or X570, my budget is low and noticed that the motherboards that have Intel NIC are more expensive.

All my network gear is 1Gb and I’m happy with it, so I don’t need the 2.5Gb.

I have been reading that Realtek usually is a problem with Linux, but I’m not sure if this is still the case after a lot of kernel updates and Realtek drivers released.
I know that OS based in freebsd (pfsense), usually has problems with Realtek, how about arch based OS?

Should I pay a little extra to get a motherboard with a Intel 1Gb NIC?

I would be dual booting into Linux (almost 24/7), and during the weekends maybe booting into Windows to play some games, so I also need that offloading feature to reach more FPS (I don’t know if Realtek NICS have this feature, or if this feature is still relevant in 2020 with more modern CPUS around).

I do not know about Realtek support in Linux, but I always go Intel nic’s where possible.

There is some information here about Realtek support.

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Hello @mcury
Both those boards are not cheap. I’m not not sure what you are looking at. I usually always buy ATX motherboards. I’m not into the micro ATX. I have my reasons and mostly it’s due to the fact that when they design the board the smaller it is something has to give. So you get less or the layout is just not as good and sometimes some boards just don’t work well. I have both in the MSI brand. The B550 i just picked up for another project down the road . I have the realtek chips on mine and i have another ASUS board which also has the realtek. I personally haven’t had any issues and i can use the r8168 or the r8169 module. If i’m using hibernate or suspend the r8169 is the one to use but typically i don’t so it doesn’t matter too much. The r8168 doesn’t like to wake back up for some reason. The 2.5 Gigabit network would be nice but you have to have the service that will provide it. I could use it as i’m on fibre optic right to the device. I would definitely not get anything less than the gigabit ethernet.

I think you can use ethtool on Arch to set offload.

As far as the Intel NIC are concerned I’m not that fussy with thier newer chips. But everyone will probably have their own likes or dislikes and opinion on that. It all boils down to what’s more important because the board you pick or want with certain features may or may not have either brand of ethernet. You’ll have to see. Wireless spec 802.11 AX is out now so newer chips will be geared towards that. Again you have to have the hardware to provide that.

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Thanks for the feedback both of you, it’s not being a easy task to choose, I’m indeed more in Intel’s side here for the NIC, but reading the arch wiki link provided, I’m now aware that there is a support and module for it, thanks.

As my budget is low, I’ll probably go for the cheaper one now that I have a feedback from an user that is using it without any problems.

Regarding the WIFI, I won’t be using it, and I’m also going for ATX.

I’m not the user that changes the hardware so often, I’ll be using probably for the next 5 years, so I must pick correctly :slight_smile:

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Not sure what the prices are like over there but here the board is around $219 CDN plus 13% tax.
Edit: This is on sale $40 dollars off CDN

Here, it’s expensive… A 140 US dollars motherboard cost around 1400 Brazilian reais.
A minimum wage here in Brazil is around 1050 Brazilian reais.
So it’s more than a month of work for most of us.

I understand. Is a tough time everywhere also with what is going on. I wish you well. Stay Safe and i hope you able to do this when the time is right. :soccer:

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Thanks for the nice words =)
I hope that to every one too. :slight_smile:

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Here are the Intel Wifi

Most of the current Intel Wi-Fi will be 802.11AC or 802.11AX

I usually refrain from making purchase recommendation because of rapid changes in hardware land.

One thing I have discovered over the years and it has become more true when I completely switched from bare-metal Windows to bare-metal Linux.

Modern Intel based systems seems to have far less issues than AMD based systems.

From the Manjaro forum - the majority of issues stem from pure AMD systems - AMD/Nvidia and Intel/Nvidia combinations - very often - mostly laptops.

My latest hardware adventure was to get an additional Nvidia Quadro P2000 card in addition to the onboard Intel - and it worked great - for a while - lately there was a lot of issues with VirtualBox and Nvidia 450 - I ripped the Nvidia card in frustration and now this €500 graphics are staring at me - reminding me of the mistake. I will probably try again at some time - but right now I don’t feel like trying.


You should have no problem running the Quadro P2000. It uses the 450.xx series drivers.

I’m between the Gigabyte Gaming X and the MSI A-PRO…
Now, waiting the prices to go down or for some crazy promotion that happen sometimes

Yup - I know - and I used 450 - but I had issues with compositing - scrolling in Firefox was a pain and my monitors was redrawing badly - so for know I use the Intel graphics. I will troubleshoot the issue at a more convenient time.

Hm… the msi mpg b550 gaming plus seems to be nice too…

It shouldn’t be an issue on a desktop. You have the option of turning off onboard Intel Graphics in the Bios most likely. That is how i run mine. I have an Nvidia GTX 1060 and Intel onboard 630 HD which i turn off in UEFI.

That is also a nice board too. It has one less m.2 and only 1.0 Gigabit ethernet where as the B550 has 2 m.2 and both 2.5 and 1.0 Gigabit ethernet. Here it is only $5.00 CDN difference in price. But it is a nice board too and so is the MSI A-Pro. Gigabyte is okay too. I think any of these boards are quite adequate. Look at the price, look at the specs, look at reviews, and I think you’ll pick one that suits your needs.

I’m doing that, already sold my dji spark drone, money is in the bank waiting for a good price.
I’ll probably go with the msi mpg b550 plus, just watched a VRM test from hardware unboxing, and based on Rio de Janeiro temperature, I will choose a good VRM, not overclocking but here is too hot.
I only need one m.2, I’ll use the pci 4.0 x4 to get those huge speeds, and in the future, maybe one year from now, buy one RTX 3070, kind of waiting AMD new cards to release to see whats going to happen with the prices.
I also have one power supply hanging here that will be in this new PC I’m trying to buy.
So, after buying the hardware, I’ll sell my old computer, I hope to be able to buy this new pc with the money I got from the drone, and with the money I’ll get selling my old Intel PC.

Hardware unboxing B550 vrm tests and analysis.

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Thank you for your thoughts - my comment wasn’t intended as a hidden support question - we are kind of off topic :slight_smile:.

My system is a Thinkstation P330 2nd gen. and Thinkstation uses Nvidia Quadro in their base config (different variants) - but the usually ship with Windows.

And as I am on a schedule for the time being - I can’t get frustrated - it takes my focus on the task at hand. I will troubleshoot this when my schedule calms down and I will find the cause - but I suspect it was/is a driver issue - maybe a line in the config - I will get to it.

I specifically bought the Asus X570 Prime Pro because of the Intel IGB network. It cost 20 € more than the non-pro variant but IMO that’s money well spent.

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I can’t find a B550 with Intel NIC.
I’ll probably have to search for a X570. Comparing prices already.