JP Vossen on 27 Jan 2009 12:20:51 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] Linux Laptop recommendation

> From: Russ Wenner
>> I am looking for recommendations for a laptop computer running Linux
>> for some heavy lifting (running VM's, etc).  I would like a laptop
>> were everything works out-of-the-box (SD Card reader, Blue Tooth, Web
>> Cam, Wireless, etc.) and also has at least one year support.  I am
>> looking to keep the price tag to around $1000.  What would you
>> recommend?

One other thing just jumped into my head while reading Brian Vagnoni's 
good points: hard drive speed.  I suspect you will sometimes have a 
choice between 5400 and 7600 (or something) RPMs.  Get the fastest possible.

I just bought 2 Dell Inspiron 1525N Laptops (the 'N' series was 
originally "No OS" but seems now to mean Ubuntu).

Start at the oh-so-intuitive:
and see also:

$664 (03:24 PM 2009-01-04), Ubuntu 8.04! ($679-15) (Same previous 2x I

 >	PROCESSOR	Intel® Core™ 2 Duo T5800 (2.0GHz/800Mhz FSB/2MB
	OPERATING SYSTEM	Ubuntu 8.04 with DVD Playback
	DISPLAY	Glossy, widescreen 15.4 inch display (1280x800)
	VIDEO CARD	Intel Graphics Media Accelerator X3100
 >	MEMORY	3GB Shared Dual Channel DDR2 at 667MHz
!	HARD DRIVE	Size: 120GB SATA Hard Drive (5400RPM)
	WIRELESS CARDS	Intel® 3945 802.11a/g Mini-card
 >	INTEGRATED WEBCAM	Integrated 2.0M Pixel Webcam
	BATTERY OPTIONS	56Whr Lithium Ion Battery (6 cell)
	SOUND OPTIONS	High Definition Audio 2.0
	Network	Integrated 10/100 Network Card

 > means upgrade, ! means I didn't spring for the faster disk.  One of 
these these machines will run 1 single Win XP VM on it, the other will 
only run the VMware fat client.

I also got 2 Inspiron 530 desktops.  Those are very nice, though they 
were not installed with LVM, which is a bit annoying since I can't do 
snapshots for backups.

Now, here's the flaw with this approach.  I ordered the laptops weeks 
ago, and the were supposed to ship on the 23rd, but have been delayed a 
couple of times.  I kind of expected that, and while annoying it isn't 
critical to me.  But don't plan on getting Dell laptops fast...

If you get them, the ML is pretty handy.  (There 
are a number of folks from this list on that one too, including me.) 
The ML usually has pretty good details.  Dell has a 
very--scattered--approach to Linux info on their web sites.  The 
read-only Wiki (WTH?) noted above has some wrong info in it (I forget 
what), but no one (some Dell folks included) can seem to get it changed.

Having said all of that I have heard nothing but good things about 
System76 laptops as well.  We buy a LOT of Dell at work so I get a 
pretty good discount, which is one reason I went with them.  Another was 
to encourage their Ubuntu initiative.  And bottom line I have to use 
them at work and I am just familiar with them, so there is inertia.

Good luck,
JP Vossen, CISSP            |:::======|
My Account, My Opinions     |=========|
"Microsoft Tax" = the additional hardware & yearly fees for the add-on
software required to protect Windows from its own poorly designed and
implemented self, while the overhead incidentally flattens Moore's Law.
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