Originally Posted by Malachai.77
I was wondering if some of you could give me come feedback or comments on what laptop would be good. I'm in the process of buying a new laptop that will run dual boot with vista, and Linux. I need it for work, school and personal time when I'm at home.
Right now I'm looking at the Dell 1505... Is dell a good place to buy a laptop or would hp, or the other companies be good. I did notice that the dell laptop don't come with pcmcia slots... I'm also going to use it with aircrack...
Which laptop runs good on linux?
Any comments or feedback would be great... I just want something easy to carry, and have a dual boot machine...
I am 59 and retired. I worked for Nortel for 30 plus years in hardware and software. In 2004 I got a chance to visit Calgary so I purchased an MDG from their store in Calgary and carried it back to Ontario without any software. MDG had a deal where you got a free printer but they would not honour it because I did not purchase winXP. (saved me about a 100 dollars.) I did not want a cheap little printer. Anyway it is a Visionbook Pro CL51 1.5g 4200rpm 2.5 " 60G harddrive 512Mbyte ddr mem Intel calixico wireless with the latest power Intel saving technology chips. The laptop at that time was 1700.oo $c.
This laptop has everything and more, except the view screen fades quickly if viewed from an angle (good if you are sitting on a bus and want privacy, bad if you want to show more than 3 people.) A better view screen at that time would have been over 800.00 more.
I practiced instaling linux 7 then 8 and finally 9 on an old desktop pentium 2 computer with 512K and 8G drive. It was slow because the 1999 era cd reader was 4x. but I learned.
Decided to instal "red hat 9" on the visionbook. In the meantime I retired from Nt, and so I did not need the laptop with Linux but kept to the plan anyway.
Now for the good part. Linux red hat 9 was better than 8 and on the lap top the installation went great. Today I have 10G of family photo's and 20G of family movies. I wish I had got a bigger drive, but again, the addional cost then would be far more than just adding a 300G usb external drive now. I use Samba to move files from visionbook to desktop XPpro. I use gmplayer for movies and I use the kdconqueror apps than came with redhat to view slideshows and or just photos. Mp3 player is xmms.
I am happy with this thing and it will run for at least 2.5 hours before a low power light starts flashing. Everything in the konqueror section is installed including development tools and Gimp, but I did not get the wireless card to work on a buddies wireless system. Only tried it once or twice and it is not priority at present, partly because I do not understand linux 9 security. I do not use the visionbook for surfing, but instead use my desktop asus mb 800 Mhertz / 9800ati card winXPro / Norton-Symantec security system. Gimp is used to repair-manipulate etc photos on the vision book and heavy jobs are done on the desktop. My Visionbook has only 2x256 K ram so Gimp can slow it down for 10 megabyte photos.
I have many mp3 selections on dvd's and can play them thru the earphone jack to any stereo amp or ghetto blaster. (i dislike use of ghetto word) and this works great at a friends cottage.
I purchased a Dell laptop in 2002 for my son after he completed Master's degree. He picked out everything from the net and ordered it the way he wanted. The Inspiron cost 3000 and has a wonderful display especially for 2002. This dell is running dual boot Linux7 plus WinXP home. It came from Dell fully configured with XP and it works great even today, after being carried thru hundreds of trips to class etc thru snow, rain and tumbles. The monitor failed in 2005 and he used my laptop for 4 months until he located a new display unit on the net, puchased it ebay, installed it and it now works great again or still. Dell of course was not consulted because the warranty had expired. The Dell Inspiron has been a great lap top for him. Many of his university requirements use secure telnet and linux servers. He used my laptop as he uses the dell tv-out port to display info on overhead projectors for teaching classes. Dell should have installed the fast usb port but they sold him the old slowpoke. It has made addition of an external usb harddrive a bit slow on backup.
Final thoughts on what you should buy ...
MDG and Dell are OK or at least were in 2004 and 2002. Try to get latest features such as fastest hard drive rpm, at least 1G ram, wireless and Cat5 connectors, tv-out and a separate 15 pin separate output for svga display or better , make sure you get dvd read and burn. Either get a good warranty (3 to 5 years) or pay for an easily dis-assembled unit. (keep in mind that the cheapest laptops tend to have the hardrive permanently soldered to the mother board. This is real tricky if you drop it and the drive breaks. My son had some trouble with his hard drive but it just needed to be reformatted, and reloaded, probably because of some dual boot thing. Win and Linux must be kept totally separate and so if you want dual boot try to get the manufacturer to instal everything or at least ask for ntfs file system. If you do not ask you will be surprised. MDG and DELL are generally good companies to buy from but htey need to know exactly what you want and will pay for.
After you have done everything and are ready to purchase, ask a buddy to critique your selection, and perhaps a son if you have one. Even a 5 year old will have ideas and he may inherit the lap top. I know one person who stiil uses an old NEC laptop from 1998 with win98 for dial up service at his cottage. Do not fuss over extra thing you do not want. I have firewire and wireless never used. I have only used pcmcia for three month or so when I was working.The slot can allow future upgrades. I have plugable dvd reader which I think could be replaced with dvd writer now.
I have cat5 connector used regularly for sharing files and I even have dial up connector but have never used that. I have a 36 pin printer port never used, lots of usb 2 ports used for usb floppy and external hard drives and for camera photos etc. I have microphone input. My motherboard is 400Mhz backplane. (800 is best today) I have 1.5G pentium 4 and intel display chip set and microphone input chipset. Make sure DELL and or MDG provides quality sound capture hardware. DELL and any of the big guys , Compaq-HP, for instance will provide the cheapest chips they can unless you ask. My speakers are crappy little stereo but there is a earphone out jack to solve that. I have never used the 7 pin svideo tv-out connector.
I have never used the infrared signalling system on my laptop.
One day in a hurry I wanted to tell redhat to open a certain file type with gmplayer. Unfortunatel I ended up with redhat trying open any directory with the fileplayer. A bit silly, It took me three hours to realize what I had done and how to tell redhat to open directories with konqueror, again.
Another son borrowed my laptop for a month because his desktop hard drive failed. He installed real player which messed up gmplayer. It took a bit of thought and ripping out real player and gmplayer and reinstalling gmplayer to get everything back.
In the futur: I need to upgrade my 512 Mb ram to at least 1.5 G or 2G.
Photos keep getting bigger and movies keep getting higher def. The visionbook will last me at least another 5 years.