[Techtalk] Laptop recommendations?

Aaron Mulder ammulder at alumni.princeton.edu
Wed Jan 23 14:29:43 EST 2002

	I use a Thinkpad T20, and I love it.  Great combination of weight 
(<5) and features.  The top 'o' the line models (now T22 or T23 or so) 
will set you back $3500+, but if you don't insist on 1200 MHz, it gets 
cheaper fast.  Still, it's definitely more than a Toshiba, but I love it 
to death, and I think it's worth every penny.
	You can get integrated ethernet for $100, and at the time I bought 
there was both an Intel and a 3Com option available.  I gather the Intal 
worked with Linux all along, but the 3Com was added to the kernel more 
recently (2.2.17 or so, and early 2.4.x I think).  I use it and the only 
thing you need to do to make it work is unload/reload the module in 
suspend/resume (using the APM scripts -- more info available).  New models 
also offer integrated wireless, but I don't know how that is with Linux (I 
use a D-Link PCMCIA wireless card).
	Sound works fine, the modem is a WinModem but I think you can get
it to work with a Lucent binary driver (never tried myself), and video
works fine (1024 on the LCD, 1280+ on external monitors; newer models go
up to 1400x1050 on the LCD).  3D performance is nothing to write home
about.  It has an eraser-mouse, and the best laptop keyboard I've ever
laid hands on.
	2k or XP will cost an extra $100 over 98/ME (at least last time I 
checked), but they used to offer at least 1 model with a Linux distro.  I 
don't see that option any more, but IIRC it was the same price as 2k, so 
the only thing it got you was a (closed-source) Linux DVD player.
	Hard drive looks like 15-48GB, and you can get CD-ROM, DVD-RAM, 
CD-RW, or combo CD-RW/DVD-ROM.

	Anyway, IMHO the biggest factors are keyboard, mouse, weight, and


Model stats at:  http://commerce.www.ibm.com/cgi-bin/ncommerce/CategoryDisplay?cgrfnbr=2049168&cntrfnbr=1&cgmenbr=1&cntry=840&lang=en_US

On Wed, 23 Jan 2002, Raven, corporate courtesan wrote:
> 	In other news -- I will be getting a new laptop with my tax
> return this year, and putting Debian on it.  Does anyone have
> recommendations for laptops that they particularly like, or have worked
> particularly well with Linux?  I'm trying to do some research in
> advance.  I've had generally good luck in the past with Dells or with
> IBM ThinkPads, but I've only helped friends with their installs.  I've
> never gotten to keep the laptop, so I don't know what they're like to
> actually run.
> 	A good network card is the most essential thing.  (90% of what
> I'll be doing with it is remote administration, network pen testing, and
> such.)  I don't much care about a nice graphics card (though it has to
> be able to run 1024x768 X) or super-quality sound card.  Playing MP3s
> would be good, but I can't even tell the difference between tape quality
> and CD quality, so I'm not an audio snob.  Lots of hard drive space so I
> can do forensics on the go would be nice, and lots of memory because I
> generally have ten million xterms open at any one time.
> 	Any recommendations, horror stories, things to get, things to
> avoid?
> Thanks in advance,
> Raven
> "Unrated beta feh. You are alpha bitch queen.  I am alpha bitch princess. 
>  Mwa ha ha."
>   -- Jalen, on pack dynamics
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