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Well, I've recently decided to buy a new laptop exclusively for Linux. I've only used Linux for about a year, and even then I used it very little. I usually ...
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  1. #1
    Just Joined! paintba||er's Avatar
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    Looking For A Linux Compatible Laptop


    Well, I've recently decided to buy a new laptop exclusively for Linux. I've only used Linux for about a year, and even then I used it very little. I usually use a Mac, but I have been wanting to dive into Linux and start learning about it. I was planning on buying a MacBook Pro soon, but rather I'm going to buy a cheap Linux laptop now and probably buy an iMac a little later. So, I'm still a n00b with everything Linux, but I plan on changing that.

    Anyway, I've been trying to find a good laptop, that is 100% compatible with Linux without having to tinker with everything. I like tinkering with stuff, but only when I want to. I want to be able to install it, and have most things working, then I can tinker with stuff when I have extra time. So I figured that the best approach would be to buy a laptop that is preloaded with Linux so that it is guaranteed to support Linux. So I looked around a bit and the Dell Inspiron 1420N is what interested me most. But when I did a search I found that people were having problems with the Intel X3100 graphics card that it has and Linux. I've heard that it isn't well supported, and that it doesn't support 3D. I'm not a big PC gamer, (thats what my PS3, 360, and Wii are for) but I use Compiz-Fusion, and I will occasionally play a little open source game, that doesn't require much, but I'm not sure if this will work for even those things. So I decided to look at the versions of that come with Windows, since you can get them with an NVIDIA 8400M GS. I really didn't want to pay extra for Windoze since I don't like supporting M$ or paying for something that I will immediately remove, but if that is what I have to do to get supported hardware then I guess thats what I'll do. So I think that I've found a conclusion and start searching for problems with that and Linux. I found even more people having problems with it than the Intel. So now I don't know what to do. Does anyone that has one of these Inspirons comment? Also, I'm not sure if this is signifigant, but I don't plan on keeping Ubuntu on it, I would probably install Debian, Mandriva, Gentoo, or some other distro.

    I'm also open to suggestions for other laptops. I would like one that meets the following.

    4GB RAM
    At least 160GB, preferably <250GB HDD
    WiFi
    Preferably Bluetooth
    I'm not to strict about the CPU, but 2.2Ghz Core 2 Duos have been on the low end of what I've been looking at
    Preferably around $1,500, it can be a little more, but no more than $1,800


    This is what I currently have as my LinuxBox, I would like for it to be a fairly large improvement over this so I'm not disappointed that it didn't meet my expectations.

    Sorry for the n00bish questions. :/

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer RobinVossen's Avatar
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    For the wifi check the docs of the distro you are going to use. I think you might want a prism one since they just work.
    Bluetooth, well I know the linksys usb adapter 100m works.
    Look for a Intell one with a 32bit processor.

    Hope that helps.

    (add a Nv Card and not a ATi)
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  3. #3
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    Hello.

    IBM ThinkPad Notebooks work fine with Linux.

    Personally, I like the concept and looks of the ASUS laptops, but do not know how good they work with Linux. I guess, they would be fine, as well.

    I hope this helps.

    Alexander

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    Just Joined! paintba||er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lordshooter View Post
    Hello.

    IBM ThinkPad Notebooks work fine with Linux.

    Personally, I like the concept and looks of the ASUS laptops, but do not know how good they work with Linux. I guess, they would be fine, as well.

    I hope this helps.

    Alexander
    I looked at the ThinkPads, but they are a little out of my price range, and the ones that I can afford have the same Intel graphics card.

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    Hello paintballer,
    as far as I know there are also some less expensive model, the ones with the smaller screens.

    But you could also get a good second hand one. Or one that was only use a exebition/instruction model.

    Maybe you could look into eBay, to get some ideas about prices.
    To mention a pirce for one that was exibited in a shop, it would be around $300, for a simple ThinkPad.

    I do like the look and the specs of Alienware and Asus, but don't know how they go with Linux.

  6. #6
    Just Joined! paintba||er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lordshooter View Post
    Hello paintballer,
    as far as I know there are also some less expensive model, the ones with the smaller screens.

    But you could also get a good second hand one. Or one that was only use a exebition/instruction model.

    Maybe you could look into eBay, to get some ideas about prices.
    To mention a pirce for one that was exibited in a shop, it would be around $300, for a simple ThinkPad.

    I do like the look and the specs of Alienware and Asus, but don't know how they go with Linux.
    Yes, there are some less expensive ones, but they have the Intel X3100, which has compatibility issues. And I would also like to have it meet the specifications that I've stated above, and I don't plan on buying a used one. I also looked on Linux On Laptops and noticed that the Thinkpads aren't free of compatibility issues.

    I'm getting pissed off because everything that I find has one of those two graphics cards. :/

    I just found this HP TX100Z that I could get configured the way I want for about $1,700, but I'm not sure about its compatibility, especially since it is a tablet. I've always wanted a tablet PC, but I'm not sure how well (if at all) the touch screen will work with Linux.

  7. #7
    Linux Engineer RobinVossen's Avatar
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    It will work if you configure the Kernel right.
    I have build my own PDA with linux so (Touch Screen)

    Cheers,
    Robin
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  8. #8
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    I configured a 17inch Dell Inspiron 1720 today for about $1,500. Here's what it had:

    Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2gHz/800mHz FSB/4MB Cache
    256MB Nvidia Geforce 8600M GT
    2GB RAM
    160GB SATA 7200 RPM Harddrive
    DVD+/-RW
    Intel Wireless
    Bluetooth
    2yr In-Home parts/service warranty

    It also came with Vista Home Premium, which would be the first thing to go for me.
    Registered Linux user #270181
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  9. #9
    Just Joined! paintba||er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobinVossen View Post
    It will work if you configure the Kernel right.
    I have build my own PDA with linux so (Touch Screen)

    Cheers,
    Robin
    Yeah, now that I think about it I have a Pocket PC with Linux on it too. But I think I will pass on this one too since a search returned things like this:

    "there were at least a few reports on google that Fedora installed on it OK (with problems)."
    "The HP Pavilion tx1000z is a very Linux unfriendly laptop"
    "If you are like me, after you installed the latest Ubuntu, some things just didn't work"

  10. #10
    Linux Engineer Thrillhouse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe View Post
    I configured a 17inch Dell Inspiron 1720 today for about $1,500. Here's what it had:

    Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2gHz/800mHz FSB/4MB Cache
    256MB Nvidia Geforce 8600M GT
    2GB RAM
    160GB SATA 7200 RPM Harddrive
    DVD+/-RW
    Intel Wireless
    Bluetooth
    2yr In-Home parts/service warranty

    It also came with Vista Home Premium, which would be the first thing to go for me.
    Jeez. I just got a Dell with about half the specs of that for ~$400 more. Oh well, I like their line of business machines a little more than the standard consumer ones so I guess I don't mind paying for it either.

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