From the reviews we have published featuring Intel's P35 "Bearlake" Chipset on such motherboards as the Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3P and ASUS Blitz Extreme, this chipset has functioned very well under Linux with no real problems and the performance has been great. While the P35 works wonders on Linux, how does Intel's soon-to-be-shipped X38 work with Linux? Well, in this article we will tell you how this new Intel Chipset, which supports two PCI Express 2.0 slots and other improvements, is able to function on a Linux desktop and Solaris. At hand we have the Gigabyte X38-DQ6 motherboard as we explore its alternative OS compatibility and performance.
Since this board uses the Realtek 8111B NIC, I assume it's network performance stinks. We have a P35 Gigabyte board with the same NIC, and X traffic is painfully slow. I have also read that SAMBA traffic under Linux with that NIC also suffers greatly.
I believe a band-aid has been included in 2.6.23 to alleviate most of the performance problems, but it does not actually fix the root of the problem.