Exploring CPUs, motherboards, overclocking, building your own PC, case mods, PC brands, handhelds, peripherals of all types, DVDs, CD burners, hardware-specific software, device drivers, and anything else related to hardware.
The The Restaurant at the Edge of the Universe, previously known as The Water Cooler, is a place to post stuff that has absolutely nothing at all to do with computers, broadband, Scot's Newsletter, or anything that's "supposed" to be here.
Personally, I like Nvidia cards. As long as you use the nvidia driver, in my experience, they work flawlessly. That said, I do not use older cards so none of these issues plague me.
I just got a Asus ROG GTX 1070 8gb the other week that replaced my aging GTX 970 4gb and I didn't have to reinstall the drivers or anything. I just replaced it and carried on.
Unfortunately for a lot of people, most Linux distros nowadays are not designed to be ran on older systems. There are some distros that cater to older machines but most of your popular distros will require up to date hardware. The key is to not use bleeding edge hardware as the drivers may not be there yet but also do not use too old of hardware or it won't be supported.
At one time Linux was great for older hardware but that is really not the case as much nowadays for mainstream distros. Best thing that can be done is to use those that cater to older hardware or use a more lightweight environment. For instance, Gnome requires a minimum of 4GB of ram (at minimum) to run on Ubuntu: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/SystemRequirements