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Intel Architecture Systems Capable of Running BeOS

Wondering if your current system can run BeOS? This information is updated whenever Be releases new drivers to include new models, and any status change on existing models.

For questions which are not answered here, especially concerning specific support for products or technologies, see the (unofficial) user reports of hardware which is incidentally supported by BeOS at the FrizBe Hardware Matrix. You should also check the Drivers section of BeBits.com to see if third parties have developed the drivers you are looking for.

If you want to want to test your computer for BeOS compatibility without setting aside a partition first, try downloading BeOS 5 Personal Edition -- it's the ultimate hardware compatibility test.

For compatibility information regarding BeOS for PowerPC release, see our BeOS Ready Systems -- PowerPC list.

Very Important Note: We're very sorry, but we cannot answer the question "Here is my system configuration, can I run BeOS on it?" The number of variables is too high. The information below will help you determine if your system is compatible, and is the same information we use to determine compatibility. Really, we're not holding anything back!

This list is current for BeOS 5 Personal Edition and BeOS 5 Pro Edition for Intel Architecture, as of March 27, 2000. If you notice this page not being updated periodically, it's only because we have no new compatibility information to add.

Quick links to sections on this page:

Minimum Hardware Requirements

  • A BeOS Ready processor and motherboard chipset.

  • 32 megabytes of RAM.

  • An IDE or SCSI hard disk or hard disk partition with 200 megabytes of space (or 600 MB of disk space free on C: for BeOS 5 Personal Edition)

  • An IDE/ATAPI or SCSI CD-ROM drive.

  • A graphics card capable of VESA graphics.

  • USB, PS/2, or serial connected mouse and keyboard.

The world of Intel Architecture computers is very large and diverse. This diversity makes it difficult or impossible to list every possible system configuration which is compatible with BeOS. While the information here is believed to be accurate and complete when compiled, there may be errors of correctness or omission. Your mileage may vary, and Be is not responsible for purchase decisions you make using this information.

BeOS Ready Fundamentals


BeOS for Intel Architecture is compatible with all truly Pentium-compatible processor(s), including the following:

  • Intel Celeron
  • Intel Pentium (133MHz or higher recommended)
  • Intel Pentium MMX
  • Intel Pentium Pro
  • Intel Pentium II
  • Intel Pentium II Xeon
  • Intel Pentium III
  • Intel Pentium III Xeon
  • AMD Athlon
  • AMD K6, K6-2, K6-III
  • Cyrix 686MX, 686GXm (but not the M1)
  • IDT WinChip C6, WinChip 2
  • Rise mP6

BeOS should run on any truly Pentium-compatible processor, whether it's on this list or not. As long as it is an Intel Pentium or true clone, it should work.

BeOS Ready Motherboard Chipset Compatibility

The following "glue" chipsets are supported by BeOS:

  • Intel 430 HX / VX / FX / TX
  • Intel 440 FX / LX / BX
  • Intel 450 KX / GX / NX
  • Intel 810, 810e, and 820
  • Via MVP3 and MVP4
  • SiS 5597, 5598 and 6326
  • ALi Aladdin 5

The core "glue" chipset of an Intel Architecture system is a vital factor in BeOS motherboard compatibility. The other chipsets and bus structures of the motherboard can extend functionality of your system in BeOS. We list here the chipsets known to be supported (though occasional BIOS differences can, rarely, cause difficulties).

If you know your system's processor and chipset, you should be able to determine whether your motherboard is compatible with BeOS (but see the next section for motherboards with explicitly confirmed support).

Other Motherboard Chipsets


  • IDE, EIDE, ATAPI support
  • UltraDMA 33 and 66 support
  • Removable media (Zip, SyQuest, Jaz, etc)
  • SIIG UltraIDE Pro PCI cards
  • Promise Ultra33 and Ultra66 PCI IDE cards

SCSI support is covered in the BeOS Ready SCSI Adapter list below. On-board SCSI controllers work exactly like their card counterparts.

USB Controllers and Peripherals:

  • UHCI-based controllers (Intel PIIX4 and Via chipsets)
  • All USB keyboards, mice, and hubs
  • USB-connected printers and printer adapters (supported printers only; see Printers)

BeOS Ready Motherboards

Here are some motherboards which are known to support BeOS and which, with the appropriate compatible processor(s) installed, give you basic functionality, USB, and IDE support. Other support (like on-board sound, graphics, etc.) is not promised, but may be available. Check other parts of this list for information related to other components of your motherboard.

  • A-Trend ATC-5000 Pentium/Pentium MMX motherboard (430TX)
  • Abit motherboards
  • ASUS P2L97-DS Dual Pentium II motherboard (440LX)
  • ASUS P2B-D and P2B-DS
  • Intel AL440LX ("Atlanta"*) Pentium II motherboard (440LX)
  • Intel AP450GX Quad Pentium Pro motherboard (450GX)
  • Intel DK440LX ("Dakota"*) Dual Pentium II motherboard (440LX)
  • Intel PD440FX ("Portland"*) Pentium II motherboard (440FX)
  • Intel PR440FX ("Providence"*) Dual Pentium Pro motherboard (440FX)
  • Intel SE440BX ("Seattle"*) Pentium II motherboard (440BX)
  • SuperMicro P6DKF Dual Pentium II motherboard (440FX)
  • Tyan S-1832DL Dual Pentium II motherboard (440BX)
  • Tyan S1692DL "Tiger 2" Dual Pentium II motherboard (440LX)
  • Tyan S1682D "Tahoe 2" Dual Pentium II motherboard (440FX)

    * These are the code names used for these products while they were under development. They are not actual product names or trademarks. We use them here because many people know the nicknames but not the actual product name. If Intel's lawyers saw us using them, they would start hopping around on one foot with all the pores of their bodies frowning, and then they'd probably make us stop...

BeOS Ready Graphics Cards

Graphics Cards

The following graphics add-in cards are supported by BeOS:

  • 3D Blaster Banshee
  • ASUS V3200
  • ATI All-In-Wonder [Pro], Xpert@Work [Pro/98], Rage 128 Pro (may require free driver from BeBits.com)
  • Canopus Total3D 128V
  • Diamond Viper V330, 550, 770, Stealth II G460, and Monster Fusion
  • Intel Express 3D
  • Matrox Mystique, Mystique 220, Mystique G200; Millenium G400, Millennium II, Millennium II AGP; Marvel G400-TV, and Productiva G100
  • Real3D Starfighter
  • STB Voodoo3 2000, 3000, 3500; Velocity 128 and 440C

Graphics Chipsets

The following graphics chipsets, used on many other add-in graphics cards and the built-in graphics on many computer motherboards, are supported by BeOS:

  • Voodoo3 (2D only) and Banshee (2D only)
  • ATI 3D Rage II, Pro, Pro Turbo, LT Pro, and Rage 128 Pro
  • Diamond Monster Fusion (uses Vodoo Banshee chipset)
  • Intel i740 and i810
  • Matrox MGA-G100, MGA-G200 and MGA-G400 (PCI or AGP)
  • NeoMagic 128, 128XD, and 256AV (laptop specific chipsets)
  • nVidia RIVA 128, TNT, and TNT2 (PCI or AGP)
  • SiS 5598, 6326, and 620 on-board graphics
  • S3 Virge, Virge DX, and Virge GX (but not VX or HX)
  • Trident MVP4

If your card is VESA compatible, you can run in VESA mode long-term if you can't obtain a compatible video card or driver for your existing card. Please note in VESA mode you cannot make use of hardware acceleration or screen savers.

If you don't have a compatible graphics card, you can run BeOS using the lowest common denominator SuperVGA "safe boot" graphics mode (640 by 480, 8-bit grayscale at worst; you can do better if your graphics card is VESA 2.0-compliant). While this should work for nearly any graphics card, SuperVGA mode is intended to allow you to install and boot BeOS, and use it long enough to download a real graphics driver for your system. It is not a long-term solution, and does not show the capabilities of BeOS.

We fully intend to add additional cards to this list, as fast as we and our developers can write drivers. For now, however, please be patient with us. And if you really need to run BeOS now, some of the above cards are very high-performance, while others are quite reasonable in price. Consider getting yourself a new graphics card if you can't wait for us to support the one you already have.

Important Note: If your card is not listed above, basically identical to a card listed above, or based on a chipset listed above, your card is not compatible with BeOS. You don't need to ask us if it might work; it won't. We are not at this time announcing cards, chipsets, or timeframes for future improvements to this list. When we know more, we'll post more. Really.

BeOS Ready Video Capture Cards

BeOS for Intel supports video capture cards based on the bt848, bt878, and bt879 chipsets from Brooktree. There are a large number of cards based on these chipsets, from a lot of different vendors. Here are a few cards commonly available in the United States which are compatible:

  • 3Com Big Picture Video Phone
  • ADS Channel Surfer TV
  • Aims Lab Video Highway Xtreme 98
  • AITech WaveWatcher Net-TV 98
  • AVerMedia TV98
  • Diamond DTV2000 from Diamond
  • Diamond Supra Video Kit
  • Hauppauge WinCast/TV Models 400, 401, 404, 447
  • Intel Smart Video Recorder III
  • IxTV and TurboTV from IXMicro
  • KeyVision Combo 606
  • Pinnacle Systems MiroVideo PCTV
  • Raffles NTSC bundled with Toshiba Infinia 7201
  • Zoltrix TV Max PCI
  • ...and many more

BeOS ships with a TV application and a webcam application that can make use of these cards. Additionally, any third party programs that allows video capture should be able to make use of these cards.

BeOS Professional Edition also includes the experimental VideoRecorder application.

BeOS Ready Network Cards and Connections

The following Ethernet add-in cards and chipsets are supported by BeOS:

Specific Ethernet PCI Cards

  • Intel EtherExpress at 10/100Mbps
  • 3Com 3c503 at 10 Mbps
  • 3Com Etherlink XL (3c900 and 3c900B) at 10Mbps
  • 3Com Fast Etherlink XL (3c905, 3c905B, and 3c905C) at 10/ 100 Mbps
  • E-machines ethernet (21145 Tulip ethernet)
  • Linksys HPN100 Homelink, ActionTec ActionLink (based on the AMD AM79C978)
  • Linksys LNE100TX - only Revs 1, 2, 3 (based on DEC21040/41 chipsets)
  • SMC Ez Card 10/100; HP network appliance (based on the RealTek 8139 / Accton EN5038)
  • almost any NE2000-compatible Ethernet cards

PCI-based Ethernet Chipsets

  • Digital 21040-, 21041-, and 21143-chipset-based cards:
    • Kingston KNE40T and KNE 110TX
    • Linksys 10MB EtherPCI and EtherFast
    • 100BaseTX
    • Addtron AEF380TX
    • Farallon FastEtherTX
    • Accton EN1207-B-TX
    • Linksys Etherfast 100BaseTX
    • Netgear FA310TX Rev C
    • and others...

PCMCIA Ethernet Chipsets

  • NE2000-compatible Ethernet cards, such as:
    • D-Link DE-660
    • Kingston EtherRx
    • Linksys (8 and 16-bit)
    • Linksys DE-660 10-T enthercard
    • Linksys Network Everywhere(tm) 10-T ethercard
    • and others...
For information on configuring an NE2000 PCMCIA card visit BeTips.

ISA-based Ethernet Chipsets

  • NE2000-compatible Ethernet cards (PnP and non PnP)


External Modems:
  • All brands, excluding USB modems
Internal Modems:
  • USRobotics 56k
  • ActionTec Desklink
  • BTC 56k
  • PCTel chipset cards
  • Lucent softmodems
  • ...and many more
Cable and DSL Modems:
These may require special considerations depending on the setup arranged by the ISP. Please see BeTips.

BeOS Ready Audio Cards

Specific Audio Cards

The following audio add-in cards are supported by BeOS:

  • E-mu APS
  • Echo Gina, Layla, and Darla
  • Ensoniq AudioPCI
  • I/OMagic MagicSound 16 and MagicSound PCI
  • MX300, IOMagic MagicWave PCI (based on the Aureal Vortex and Vortex-2
  • NewClear PCI 128
  • Sonorus STUDI/O
  • SoundBlaster Live!, PCI 16/32/64/128/512 (Ensoniq es137x), Emu 10K1 based cards, Vibra PnP, AWE32, AWE64, AWE64 Gold, and manually configured SB16 compatibles.
  • Turtle Beach Daytona, Diamond, Montego, and Montego II Quadzilla
  • VIA MVP4
  • Yamaha DS1
  • Yamaha Waveforce 192XG

Audio Chipsets

The following audio chipsets, used for the built-in audio on many computer motherboards, are supported by BeOS:

  • Crystal 4235, 4236, and 4237
  • Crystal SoundFusion cs4280
  • EMU 10k1
  • ES 137x
  • ESS 1938 Solo-1 (ess1938/1942 on motherboards)
  • OPTi931
  • S3 SonicVibes
  • Yamaha YMF715 and YMF724

For a list of third party Audio Card Drivers that are available, but not included in BeOS 5, please refer to the Drivers section of BeBits.com and the FrizBe Hardware Matrix.

We intend to expand our support for sound cards in the future releases of BeOS, as well as releasing drivers once they are ready.

BeOS Ready SCSI Adapters and Controllers

Specific SCSI Cards

The following SCSI add-in cards are supported by BeOS:

  • Adaptec AHA-2940, AHA-2940UW, AHA-294042W, and AHA-3940
  • Tekram DC-310, DC-390U2B, DC-390F
  • Diamond Fireport 20 and Fireport 40

SCSI Chipsets

The following chipsets are used on many other SCSI adapter cards, and are used for the built-in SCSI support on many computer motherboards, and are supported by BeOS:

  • Adaptec AIC-7850, AIC-7870, AIC-7880, AIC-7890 Ultra2, and AIC-7895 and AIC-7896
  • Symbios 53c8xx
  • BusLogic BT948, BT958, and BT958D

BeOS Compatible Printing

  • PostScript-based printers
  • Hewlett-Packard PCL3 (Laserjet II, III, IV, V)
  • Epson Stylus Color 600
  • Epson Stylus Color 740, 800, and 850
  • Epson Stylus Color Pro and Pro XL
  • Epson Stylus Photo, Photo 700, Photo EX and Photo 750

BeOS printing differentiates the printer connection in 2 ways: local or network. Local printers can be connected to USB, serial, or parallel and use the same driver regardless of connection method.

Note that Be is not alone in providing printer drivers to BeOS users. Some HP Deskjet printers are supported by the third-party BinkJet printer drivers available from Clarkwood Software.

BeOS Ready Digital Cameras

  • Kodak DC-220, DC-260, DC-265, and experiemental DC-290
  • Nikon Coolpix 700, 900, 950
  • Polariod PDC640
  • Olympus D320-L, D340-L and D340-R
  • Olympus Camedia C-340-L, C400, and C840-L
  • Sanyo VPCX350
  • Experimental PCMCIA adapter support

Use the Camera application in BeOS and the camera manufacturer supplied connection kit to move images to BeOS.

The third-party application BeCPiA enables support for many additional cameras.

BeOS Ready Firewire Cards:

  • Miro DV-200, DV-300
  • Adaptect 8940, 8945
  • ADS Pyro
  • SIIG 1394 DV-Cam Kit (Model NN2601)

BeOS supports upload and download of digital video footage from and to digital camcorders over FireWire.

BeOS Ready CD Burners

  • IDE:
    • HP CD-Writer+ 8110
    • Mitsumi CR-4801TE
    • Ricoh DVD/CDRW MP9060A
    • Yamaha CRW2216
    • Yamaha CRW4001
  • SCSI:
    • Plextor PX-412C
    • Plextor PlexWriter 8/20
    • Yamaha CRD400t
    • Yamaha CRW4416
    • Yamaha CRW6416

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