[sf-lug] Linux CDs

Asheesh Laroia asheesh at asheesh.org
Sat Mar 3 14:53:17 PST 2007

On Sat, 3 Mar 2007, Rick Moen wrote:

> A list-member wrote me offlist to ask me what laptop I would recommend 
> for Linux use, that ordinary humans can afford, doesn't weigh too much, 
> and has reasonable battery life.

I love love love my ThinkPad T43.  The T4x (i.e., T40, T41, T42, ...) 
series available for ca. $600-$900 depending on screen resolution and 
model (1400x1050 in 14" is totally sweet, but I lived with 1024x768 for a 
while).  They are very reliable, not very heavy, are fairly small, and 
have good batteries.  The T43 has a little shorter battery life than the 
older models at the cost of a marginally faster CPU.  Mine is a T43 now 
(used to have a T40, now my dad has it and loves it), and I'm okay with it 
but would rather trade the CPU down in exchange for a teensy bit more 
battery and a teensy bit lower weight.  (But I'll never go back to 
1024x768 on a laptop again!)

And they all have video cards that can run Beryl and other neato features 
of 3D accelerated desktops, all using Free Software drivers.  Sleep in 
Ubuntu works great, and the series of laptops is widely-used by Free 
Software/open source developers all over - when I was at the GPLv3 
conference at MIT in January 2006, this was the most common laptop series 
I saw - so good support in the any reasonable Linux distribution is pretty 
much guaranteed.

And they have Pentium M CPUs, which are widely known as excellent. 
They're also extremely upgradeable and repairable.  If you want to buy a 
used one, you could look at eBay or craigslist or 
http://forum.thinkpads.com/ , a ThinkPad user forum that is where I've 
bought my current T43 and some parts.  (I even helped a friend upgrade his 
LCD screen to the high-res one; they're *that* upgradeable!)  As I 
understand it, Lenovo/IBM warranties transfer automatically between people 
on sale, so you might as well try to get one that's still in warranty.

Let me know if you want to know more. :-)

I'd bring it to an SF-LUG meeting but I won't be back in the area until 
the summer.  I'm looking forward to being back in town.

-- Asheesh.

 	 "It's not the despair... I can stand the despair.  It's the hope."

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