[techtalk] Need Notebook reccomendation

Linda Walsh law at sgi.com
Wed Feb 2 09:02:33 EST 2000

Kelly Lynn Martin wrote:
> Dell has an optional service package for laptops where you can call
> them and they'll swap your broken laptop with a working one with you
> within 48 hours.  This includes damage which would not normally be
> covered by warranty, such as "I dumped coffee in it".  There is a
> smallish charge for it, but if you live and die by your laptop it is
> MORE than worth it.
	I got a 7500 a few months ago -- GET a good service contract.
I got next business day onsite for 3 years.  So far it's been worth it.
Keyboard died the 2nd day - replaced, I'm on my third motherboard and
2nd network adaptor.  I have the 15.4" 1280x1024 and am running SuSE 6.3
on it.  The flat panel has about 6 pixels gone bad so far.  Not horrible,
but awfully quickly, I would think.

Also -- since they didn't sell it w/Linux when I got it, when I call up,
I have to reproduce any problems in Windows and lie to the tech support
folks by telling them Linux isn't on the Disk to get support.  

I originally shrank down the Windows partition (got the 25G hard disk) to
make room for Linux.

Oddly enough -- Dell limits you to lesser powered hardware if you buy it
with Linux installed -- only 4MB video ram instead of 8, smaller
hard disk and no DVD option were 3 that I noticed.
They do the same with their workstation
line (210,220,410,420,610) -- if you order the system with Linux, they
limit you to a lesser powered system (like smaller hard disks).  Why
they do this I have no clue -- must be marketing -- if you want a high
powered system you have to pay the microsoft tax (for which Dell presumably
has a pretty good markup on) and get a bunch of bundled software like
"Office" and anti-virus which Dell also gets a good markup on. 

Another thing I noticed -- if I put the Inspiron in a docking station (which
I don't think you can get if you order Linux), it ignores the docking
station ethernet under Linux.  

It's nice that Dell is starting to "allow" us to choose our OS, but they
have a long way to go before I'd call them 'Linux-friendly".


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