[nSLUG] Lapotops

Jonathan Anderson jonathan.anderson at ieee.org
Tue Oct 2 22:39:53 ADT 2007

Also, it's not a Linux thing, but be sure to find out what model battery the 
laptop has and find out whether or the reviews are positive or negative.

I have a Dell Inspiron 6400, and the battery life went from 3.5h to 25m in a 
little over a year... it turns out that LOTS of people have this problem, and 
had I checked it out in advance, I could've saved myself a whole bunch of 
frustration (imagine not being able to use your laptop for a 30m meeting 
without carting power cords around).


On October 2, 2007, D G Teed wrote:
> I have evaluated laptops for my work and a fussy bunch of users
> who expect every piece of hardware to work.  It is not a simple
> thing.  First off, stay back from the latest models carrying
> the very latest chipsets, as there is typically a lag between
> kernel support appearing and the newest video, SATA,
> ethernet and other hardware support.
> Typically modems and wireless, and sometimes video,
> require a proprietary driver to support them.  NDISwrapper
> sometimes works but it is very iffy.  One model I worked
> on would freeze constantly with NDISwrapper
> if the BIOS was powered on with battery power.
> Based on that, I would seek native drivers or drivers
> from the hardware vendor such as Intel's proprietary driver.
> Keep in mind that your kernel upgrades are going to have
> tight dependancies on the additional drivers you can get, and
> it may mean staying back to whatever Intel or nVidia or
> whoever can support.
> Certification means very little.  All models I evaluated were said
> to be Suse certified, but when I lookup the details on the report,
> they have several caveats, such as CD-RW failures, etc.
> I think the model gets a pass if you can complete the
> install, and get video and sound working.
> Power management is another area needing research, if it is
> important to you.  Typically getting suspend to ram to run
> well and not hang the machine on resume is something
> taking some efforts to perfect, if it is possible.
> Before and after buying, visiting the resource of
> Linux on Laptops:  http://www.linux-laptop.net/
> is useful to research what others got working and how.
> --Donald
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Jonathan Anderson

jonathan.anderson at ieee.org
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