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#1 2012-10-05 11:54:47

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Buying new laptop, what should...

Buying new laptop for linux and #!, what should I look for? What kind of chipset and wireless vendors and other hardware will give me the least problem with drivers and configuration? I definately don`t want to buy something that gives me trouble with wireless, because that is the one thing that I need to get going from the first boot... I know that some people like to hazzle with things like that, but that`s not me. Having to connect my laptop to the router via a cable is not my kind of fun. Especially when the router is down in the basement, and I don`t want to sit down there for days, trying to get wireless to work....

I haven` t tried linux on new hardware, so I would appreciate some advice on what I should look for to make it as compatible with Linux as possible?


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#2 2012-10-05 12:56:57

gychang
#! Junkie
From: Phoenix, AZ
Registered: 2009-04-01
Posts: 274

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

I have 4 PCs, latest is year old, oldest is 10 years, 3 of them with wireless of various sorts, all work fine with various linux distros...  Best place to check is particular brand forums to make sure if u must buy the new laptop.  I know linuxmint and zorin linux seems to also produce PCs with theirs linux already installed.  good luck.

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#3 2012-10-05 13:01:36

el_koraco
#!/loony/bun
From: inside Ed
Registered: 2011-07-25
Posts: 4,749

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Intel graphics, Intel or Atheros wireless, the rest doesn't matter. Avoid hybrid graphics, and AMD&Nvidia in general.

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#4 2012-10-05 13:04:54

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

gychang wrote:

I have 4 PCs, latest is year old, oldest is 10 years, 3 of them with wireless of various sorts, all work fine with various linux distros...  Best place to check is particular brand forums to make sure if u must buy the new laptop.  I know linuxmint and zorin linux seems to also produce PCs with theirs linux already installed.  good luck.

Thanks. The reason that I`m asking is that in the last 6 months I have tried a lot of linux-distros on older laptops and have encounter several wirelss issues with Intel, Broadcom and Realtek.


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#5 2012-10-05 13:36:02

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

el_koraco wrote:

Intel graphics, Intel or Atheros wireless, the rest doesn't matter. Avoid hybrid graphics, and AMD&Nvidia in general.

OK, I have experienced some problems with Intel wireless on older laptops, but happy if that only applies to some older laptops. I have hybrid graphics on my new W7 Samsung, and it seldom uses the discrete graphics card anyway. So I probably should choose a laptop with Intel core I3-I5-I7, and HD Graphics 3000-4000?

I will not be gaming a lot on this pc, so I don`t see any need for dedicated graphics. It just increases fan noise to the system? Or would that be compensated by the cpu running cooler if I`m not using the built-in gpu? Just a thought.


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#6 2012-10-05 13:49:46

kiiroitori
#! CrunchBanger
From: Tokyo, Japan
Registered: 2010-12-07
Posts: 226

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

ew, does it have to be a laptop? I know many people who have their machines static and it makes me wonder why laptop are so popular while people use them as desktops...


I love #! more than my own kids. I told them and they sympathized.

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#7 2012-10-05 15:28:16

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

kiiroitori wrote:

ew, does it have to be a laptop? I know many people who have their machines static and it makes me wonder why laptop are so popular while people use them as desktops...

I already have built myself a powerful static machine that I use for gaming, photo and video-editing and other heavy tasks. The laptop is mostly used from the couch or in other very relaxed positions. I don`t use my laptop on a table or desk, it`s in my lap as it`s supposed to. I also have htpc connected to our flatscreen, but I can not use that while the wifey are watching soaps and reality-series. Then I usually pick up my laptop and use it from a relaxed position on the couch. I very rarely sit in a upright position. I`m kind of lazy that way:)


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#8 2012-10-05 17:13:28

el_koraco
#!/loony/bun
From: inside Ed
Registered: 2011-07-25
Posts: 4,749

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

ew wrote:

So I probably should choose a laptop with Intel core I3-I5-I7, and HD Graphics 3000-4000?
I will not be gaming a lot on this pc, so I don`t see any need for dedicated graphics. It just increases fan noise to the system? Or would that be compensated by the cpu running cooler if I`m not using the built-in gpu? Just a thought.

No compensation, hybrid graphics need an additional two or three years before they become bearable. Get an i3, it doesn't have Turbo Boost, so it runs cooler than the i5 and i7, and it handles tasks easier than Pentiums and Celerons, so again less heat. Another choice yould be an ULV i5. The GPU is built into the CPU. Ivy Bridge chips come with HD4000, Sandy Bridge with HD3000. You'll recognize Ivy Bridge because they start with 3xxx in the designation number.

Intel wireless cards will work on every distro.

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#9 2012-10-05 17:25:14

dura
Bloated Gimp
From: interzone
Registered: 2012-09-15
Posts: 2,106

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

my x121e with i3 is great.

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#10 2012-10-05 17:28:52

omns
#! wanderer
From: ~/
Registered: 2008-11-25
Posts: 5,131

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Moved from CrunchBang Talk to General Chat smile

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#11 2012-10-05 19:22:06

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

el_koraco wrote:

No compensation, hybrid graphics need an additional two or three years before they become bearable. Get an i3, it doesn't have Turbo Boost, so it runs cooler than the i5 and i7, and it handles tasks easier than Pentiums and Celerons, so again less heat. Another choice yould be an ULV i5. The GPU is built into the CPU. Ivy Bridge chips come with HD4000, Sandy Bridge with HD3000. You'll recognize Ivy Bridge because they start with 3xxx in the designation number.

Intel wireless cards will work on every distro.

Thanks. I will have that in mind. I guess that Sandy Bridge will be good enough for my laptop, but somehow I always get attracted to higher specs even though I don`t need it. But for my laptop it`s essential that it`s quiet and is running cool. I have a powerful gaming/desktop PC with extreme graphis and fans which sounds like a jumbo jet taking off. I don`t need that for a dedicated linux-laptop,


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#12 2012-10-05 19:53:45

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

d! wrote:

my x121e with i3 is great.

Probably ok, but a bit to small for me. I don see as good as I used to, and now I need to keep the screen a bit away to keep the letters apart. Otherwise everything gets blurry. Even with glasses. I`m already zooming websites on my 15" laptop. Chrome zoom is set to 112%.


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#13 2012-10-05 20:53:41

xf
Member
From: Vienna
Registered: 2012-09-12
Posts: 19

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Hi ew, how much money do you want spend for your laptop? Do you use it indoor, or outdoor? Do you need a high mobility?

Last edited by xf (2012-10-05 20:56:07)


#! CrunchBang Waldorf @ Lenovo Thinkpad X131e

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#14 2012-10-05 22:24:23

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

xf wrote:

Hi ew, how much money do you want spend for your laptop? Do you use it indoor, or outdoor? Do you need a high mobility?

Well, I mostly use it indoors, and I don`t need a high mobility. I use my oversized smartphone for things like that. I guess that my pricerange is anything up to 1000 euros. Pricing in my country is probably different, but I was thinking about something in this range...

http://www.notebookcheck.net/Quick-Revi … 311.0.html


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#15 2012-10-06 00:42:49

Psyduck9550
#! CrunchBanger
From: Lawton, OK
Registered: 2011-10-14
Posts: 184
Website

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Would a Latitude E5430 or E6500 work? I wanna get either of those laptops for my laptop and swap out the stock hard drive with an SSD and install either Crunchbang or PC-BSD LXDE on it. -shrug-


My dA. http://dfx4509b.deviantart.com/

I'm pretty much a typical geek. lol

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#16 2012-10-06 01:04:21

raken
Member
From: Florida
Registered: 2012-10-04
Posts: 12

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Would something like this work?

https://www.system76.com/laptops/model/gazp7

I know Ubuntu is on there, pretty sure #! would work out of the box.


"Rorschach's Journal, October 16th, 1985. 42nd Street: Women's breasts draped across every billboard, every display, littering the sidewalk. Was offered Swedish love and French love...but not American love. American love; like Coke in green glass bottles... they don't make it anymore." -Watchmen

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#17 2012-10-06 02:04:35

shengchieh
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2009-01-07
Posts: 616

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Personally I get a preinstalled linux laptop - alittle more pricey, but no worry about drivers.
Anything that works with debian will work with #! and anything w/ Ubuntu probably will work
with #!.  You're welcomed to surf the long list of retailers at

http://shengchieh.50webs.com/tuxslinks.html
-> Retailers
-> Linux pre-installed vendors (including laptops)

Sheng-Chieh

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#18 2012-10-06 08:41:37

el_koraco
#!/loony/bun
From: inside Ed
Registered: 2011-07-25
Posts: 4,749

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

ew wrote:

Pricing in my country is probably different, but I was thinking about something in this range...

http://www.notebookcheck.net/Quick-Revi … 311.0.html

Yes, yes, yes, yes. Don't think about it any further, go and buy it. ThinkPads are the best laptops in the world, it will run for five or six years, and you'll love it. Make sure you get the one with a 1600x900 px resolution.

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#19 2012-10-06 09:54:46

tao te
Member
From: Berlin
Registered: 2012-07-30
Posts: 43

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

el_koraco wrote:

...
ThinkPads are the best laptops in the world, it will run for five or six years, and you'll love it. Make sure you get the one with a 1600x900 px resolution.

+1.

You'll get great linux support and a superior energy optimization (linrunner's "tlp").

You could also buy a T-model from the last series, T420. It has the old famous keyboard
and the Sandy Bridge CPU. This T- model is more "Thinkpad" in the classical meaning.
... but the L-series is great as well!


T420s - i5-2520M, 4+4 GB Ram, 64 GB mSATA SSD, #! Linux

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#20 2012-10-06 11:20:06

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

raken wrote:

Would something like this work?

https://www.system76.com/laptops/model/gazp7

I know Ubuntu is on there, pretty sure #! would work out of the box.

Added to my favourites. On the downside is that I have to import it, and then the service would be very far away. I also assume they don ship with my keyboard language, so I would have to change the keyboard.


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#21 2012-10-06 11:22:57

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

tao te wrote:
el_koraco wrote:

...
ThinkPads are the best laptops in the world, it will run for five or six years, and you'll love it. Make sure you get the one with a 1600x900 px resolution.

+1.

You'll get great linux support and a superior energy optimization (linrunner's "tlp").

You could also buy a T-model from the last series, T420. It has the old famous keyboard
and the Sandy Bridge CPU. This T- model is more "Thinkpad" in the classical meaning.
... but the L-series is great as well!

Yes, I will study all thinkpads very thoroughly. I need USB 3, so if the last series didn`t have that, then it`s not a option.


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#22 2012-10-06 11:42:11

el_koraco
#!/loony/bun
From: inside Ed
Registered: 2011-07-25
Posts: 4,749

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

ew wrote:

Added to my favourites.

Don't. A System76 is like a Fiat compared to a ThinkPad's Ferrari, and it costs just a little bit less.

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#23 2012-10-06 11:42:40

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

shengchieh wrote:

Personally I get a preinstalled linux laptop - alittle more pricey, but no worry about drivers.
Anything that works with debian will work with #! and anything w/ Ubuntu probably will work
with #!.  You're welcomed to surf the long list of retailers at

http://shengchieh.50webs.com/tuxslinks.html
-> Retailers
-> Linux pre-installed vendors (including laptops)

Sheng-Chieh

Well, I ususally build my own computers from scratch, and if I buy a computer with a pre-installed OS then I always format the hdd and make a clean install. Laptops are a bit more tricky. I don`t build them from scratch, but I often buy older laptops that are unbootable or has cracked screens, broken usb-ports and other problems.  When I have fixed them and upgraded them, then they are no longer of interest to me. I give them away.

So I would not want to get a new pc with everything done for me. If I wanted that then i never would have started to look into Linux. The reason why I`m migrating into Linux is that I need the challenge. If it gets to easy then it will loose its charm:) The only thing that I don`t want to hazzle with is Wifi. That just has to work:)


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#24 2012-10-06 11:46:22

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

el_koraco wrote:
ew wrote:

Added to my favourites.

Don't. A System76 is like a Fiat compared to a ThinkPad's Ferrari, and it costs just a little bit less.

OK, added to my favourites only means that the link is bookmarked, and that I will check it out:D


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#25 2012-10-06 11:56:53

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Buying new laptop, what should...

Psyduck9550 wrote:

Would a Latitude E5430 or E6500 work? I wanna get either of those laptops for my laptop and swap out the stock hard drive with an SSD and install either Crunchbang or PC-BSD LXDE on it. -shrug-

I`m a bit sceptical to Dell because I like to be able tofix, change and upgrade all hardware parts myself. It may be rumours and myths, but there is something in my head that tells me that Dell is not the most suited for such a geeky interest. I have never tried a DEll computer, so I don`t know if it`s a fact or not:)


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