Linux on the Cheapest Laptops - Portable

This is a discussion on Linux on the Cheapest Laptops - Portable ; What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has anyone here tried it? Some of the model numbers I see (last ...

+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

  1. Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of
    the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has
    anyone here tried it?

    Some of the model numbers I see (last week's expired sales) for between
    $450 and $550 are:
    Compaq Presairo Model M2105US ($549)
    Compaq V2000Z ($499)
    Toshiba A85-S107 ($499)
    Toshiba A85-S1072 ($450)

    I've tried to check the newsgroups for myself, but Google is showing zero
    hits for the above model numbers in all Linux newsgroups.

    One more thing. I don't really want to pay the Microsoft tax, so I'll also
    ask if anyone knows where I can get a comparably equipped Linux laptop
    comparably priced?

    --
    Tony Sivori


  2. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Tony Sivori wrote:

    > What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of
    > the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has
    > anyone here tried it?
    >
    > Some of the model numbers I see (last week's expired sales) for between
    > $450 and $550 are:
    > Compaq Presairo Model M2105US ($549)
    > Compaq V2000Z ($499)
    > Toshiba A85-S107 ($499)
    > Toshiba A85-S1072 ($450)
    >
    > I've tried to check the newsgroups for myself, but Google is showing zero
    > hits for the above model numbers in all Linux newsgroups.
    >
    > One more thing. I don't really want to pay the Microsoft tax, so I'll also
    > ask if anyone knows where I can get a comparably equipped Linux laptop
    > comparably priced?
    >

    Make a knoppix boot disk and boot the computer with it. If it boots and all
    the hardware is found and running, then most other linuxes will work.

    I have a bottom of the line dell that works fine.

  3. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Tony Sivori wrote:

    > What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of
    > the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has
    > anyone here tried it?


    There's a company called "Angel Computers", which sells low end computers,
    loaded with Linux. They sell them for less than the same computer with
    Windows. Also, I believe Wal Mart has or had some notebooks loaded with
    Linux. Either of those sources should be OK for any Linux distro.


  4. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Terry Simpkins wrote:
    > Make a knoppix boot disk and boot the computer with it. If it boots and
    > all the hardware is found and running, then most other linuxes will
    > work.


    Good idea, if I decide to buy I'll try that. The cheap deals from Office
    Depot are special order from the factory, but hopefully they'd have a
    display model. If not, there's always Best Buy or one of the others.

    > I have a bottom of the line dell that works fine.


    How bottom was it, price wise? How old is it, and what distro are you
    running?

    --
    Tony Sivori


  5. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    James Knott wrote:

    > Tony Sivori wrote:
    >
    >> What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom
    >> of the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling?
    >> Has anyone here tried it?

    >
    > There's a company called "Angel Computers", which sells low end
    > computers, loaded with Linux. They sell them for less than the same
    > computer with Windows.


    Unfortunately, their prices are all well over $1000.

    > Also, I believe Wal Mart has or had some notebooks loaded with Linux.
    > Either of those sources should be OK for any Linux distro.


    That $499 Wal-Mart Linspire laptop is significantly underspecification
    compared to the recent sales. 128 MB ram versus 246 MB, 30 GB HD versus 40
    GB, CR-ROM versus CD-RW with DVD-ROM, built in wireless versus no
    wireless, and a 1 GHz VIA CPU (WTF?) versus, Intel or AMD up to an AMD
    2800+.

    --
    Tony Sivori


  6. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Terry Simpkins writes:

    >Tony Sivori wrote:


    >> What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of
    >> the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has
    >> anyone here tried it?
    >>
    >> Some of the model numbers I see (last week's expired sales) for between
    >> $450 and $550 are:
    >> Compaq Presairo Model M2105US ($549)
    >> Compaq V2000Z ($499)
    >> Toshiba A85-S107 ($499)
    >> Toshiba A85-S1072 ($450)


    You will probably not be able to use the modem. YOu may not be able to
    switch the screen from internal to external (this is true even for
    expensive laptops) The video might be a problem. The pcmcia might be.
    Otherwise it should be OK.
    But as they suggest take along a CD installation.


    >>
    >> I've tried to check the newsgroups for myself, but Google is showing zero
    >> hits for the above model numbers in all Linux newsgroups.
    >>
    >> One more thing. I don't really want to pay the Microsoft tax, so I'll also
    >> ask if anyone knows where I can get a comparably equipped Linux laptop
    >> comparably priced?


    Almost certainly no. they are cheap because loads were made. And they were
    made with Windows.

    >>

    >Make a knoppix boot disk and boot the computer with it. If it boots and all
    >the hardware is found and running, then most other linuxes will work.


    >I have a bottom of the line dell that works fine.


  7. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    James Knott wrote:

    > Tony Sivori wrote:
    >
    >> What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom of
    >> the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling? Has
    >> anyone here tried it?

    >
    > There's a company called "Angel Computers", which sells low end computers,
    > loaded with Linux. They sell them for less than the same computer with
    > Windows. Also, I believe Wal Mart has or had some notebooks loaded with
    > Linux. Either of those sources should be OK for any Linux distro.


    While not below $1K, here's another source.

    http://www.shoprcubed.com


  8. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    On Wed, 17 Aug 2005 09:05:09 -0500, Dances With Crows
    wrote:

    [warning: thread hijacking in progress]

    >I hear that if you call up Sager ( http://www.sagernotebook.com/ ,
    >warning, index.html is Flash-infested) and speak to an actual human
    >being, you can get them to sell you a laptop that has no OS installed on
    >it. I've never tried this though, because they don't sell laptops with
    >Trackpoints, and I hate touchpads.


    I knew there had to be at least _one_ other trackpoint fan out there!

    Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?

    I've always been solidly in the IBM camp, but now that I find out my
    new T43 forces me to use only IBM-branded/modified HDs ($$$ to
    upgrade/replace) I'm trying to return it and look elsewhere.

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  9. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Bill Waddington wrote:
    > I knew there had to be at least _one_ other trackpoint fan out there!


    Are you kidding? I love the trackpoint. I've owned 3 Thinkpads over my
    computer life, solely because of the trackpoint. I'll never be able to
    use a touchy pad thingy.

    > Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?


    Yup, Toshiba sells many (all?) laptops with both trackpoint and touchy
    pad. There are others out there.

    --
    Let's not complicate our relationship
    by trying to communicate with each other.

  10. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Tony Sivori wrote:
    > James Knott wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Tony Sivori wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>>What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom
    >>>of the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling?
    >>>Has anyone here tried it?

    >>
    >>There's a company called "Angel Computers", which sells low end
    >>computers, loaded with Linux. They sell them for less than the same
    >>computer with Windows.

    >
    >
    > Unfortunately, their prices are all well over $1000.
    >
    >
    >>Also, I believe Wal Mart has or had some notebooks loaded with Linux.
    >>Either of those sources should be OK for any Linux distro.

    >
    >
    > That $499 Wal-Mart Linspire laptop is significantly underspecification
    > compared to the recent sales. 128 MB ram versus 246 MB, 30 GB HD versus 40
    > GB, CR-ROM versus CD-RW with DVD-ROM, built in wireless versus no
    > wireless, and a 1 GHz VIA CPU (WTF?) versus, Intel or AMD up to an AMD
    > 2800+.
    >


    Quick note on the VIA CPU: they're most likely the C3 line, which
    convert at most, 3 Watts as heat. Barely enough to warm a slice of
    toast. Intel and AMD mobile CPUs burn through something like 25-50W,
    while desktop chips can churn through over 120.

    --
    Cheers, http://www.dotware.co.uk
    Jim http://www.dotware-entertainment.co.uk

    Maybe the Internet has the answers I need. It certainly answered my
    questions about wang enhancement.

  11. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    johnny bobby bee wrote:
    > Bill Waddington wrote:
    >
    >> I knew there had to be at least _one_ other trackpoint fan out there!

    >
    >
    > Are you kidding? I love the trackpoint. I've owned 3 Thinkpads over my
    > computer life, solely because of the trackpoint. I'll never be able to
    > use a touchy pad thingy.
    >
    >> Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?

    >
    >
    > Yup, Toshiba sells many (all?) laptops with both trackpoint and touchy
    > pad. There are others out there.
    >


    All four of my Dell laptops have both track and touch.

    --
    Cheers, http://www.dotware.co.uk
    Jim http://www.dotware-entertainment.co.uk

    Maybe the Internet has the answers I need. It certainly answered my
    questions about wang enhancement.

  12. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    In article , james@the-
    computer-shop.co.uk says...
    > Tony Sivori wrote:
    > > James Knott wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > >>Tony Sivori wrote:
    > >>
    > >>
    > >>>What are the odds of Mandrake / Mandriva or Suse working on the bottom
    > >>>of the line laptops that Office Depot, Best Buy and others are selling?
    > >>>Has anyone here tried it?
    > >>
    > >>There's a company called "Angel Computers", which sells low end
    > >>computers, loaded with Linux. They sell them for less than the same
    > >>computer with Windows.

    > >
    > >
    > > Unfortunately, their prices are all well over $1000.
    > >
    > >
    > >>Also, I believe Wal Mart has or had some notebooks loaded with Linux.
    > >>Either of those sources should be OK for any Linux distro.

    > >
    > >
    > > That $499 Wal-Mart Linspire laptop is significantly underspecification
    > > compared to the recent sales. 128 MB ram versus 246 MB, 30 GB HD versus 40
    > > GB, CR-ROM versus CD-RW with DVD-ROM, built in wireless versus no
    > > wireless, and a 1 GHz VIA CPU (WTF?) versus, Intel or AMD up to an AMD
    > > 2800+.
    > >

    >
    > Quick note on the VIA CPU: they're most likely the C3 line, which
    > convert at most, 3 Watts as heat. Barely enough to warm a slice of
    > toast. Intel and AMD mobile CPUs burn through something like 25-50W,
    > while desktop chips can churn through over 120.


    And on top of that, as they use so little power, they don't require a
    heatsink/fan, so they are usually a lot quieter as well. They have a
    niche market over in the UK for small form factor desktops as well as
    media centre PCs.

    --
    AG

    Remove removes from address to remove anti-spam measures.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Alan Gauton E-Mail agauton @ postmaster.co.uk

    Never for me the lowered banner, never the last endeavour!
    (Damon Hill - 16th June 1999)

  13. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    johnny bobby bee wrote:

    >> Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?

    >
    > Yup, Toshiba sells many (all?) laptops with both trackpoint and touchy
    > pad. There are others out there.


    A Toshiba (don't recall the model) I was working on last week didn't have
    one. The "touchy pad" was so irritating to use, that we plugged in a
    regular mouse.


  14. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    On Thu, 18 Aug 2005 08:28:45 GMT, Jim
    wrote:

    >johnny bobby bee wrote:
    >> Bill Waddington wrote:


    >>> Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?

    >>
    >>
    >> Yup, Toshiba sells many (all?) laptops with both trackpoint and touchy
    >> pad. There are others out there.
    >>

    >
    >All four of my Dell laptops have both track and touch.


    This is reassuring. None of the machines I have seen recently had a
    trackpoint. Must be hanging out in the wrong places.

    Now if I can just get rid of this T43...

    Thanks,
    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  15. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    johnny bobby bee wrote:
    > Bill Waddington wrote:


    > > Do you know of any new machines w/trackpoint other that IBM?


    > Yup, Toshiba sells many (all?) laptops with both trackpoint and touchy
    > pad. There are others out there.


    I seem to think that most HP laptops have them as well. Certainly my
    EVO 610c does (although I've never used it as I'm in the other
    camp :-).
    --
    Huw Davies | e-mail: Huw.Davies@kerberos.davies.net.au
    Melbourne | "If soccer was meant to be played in the
    Australia | air, the sky would be painted green"

  16. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Jim wrote:
    > All four of my Dell laptops have both track and touch.


    Ye glods, talk about a glutton for punishment. My boss persists in
    buying them, cos they are cheap, and the reason for that is horribly
    obvious.

    This one runs hot, won't boot properly unless I pop the DVD drive from
    the multi-bay on the left, the screen has been damaged by the keyboard
    because I had the temerity to close the lid, and it came without
    windows disks. I've had two power supplies in 3 months, and the USB
    has blown up. Dell's on-site maintainence turns up OK, but never has
    any spares and they take weeks to arrive for me to fit myself.

    Oh, and the cursor drifts all over the screen even when no-one is
    touching either of the two ghastly pointing devices.

    If I had one Dell, I can't imagine any circumstances in which I could
    end up with 4, apart from strange and innovative form of community
    punishment.

    It does run suse and mandriva nicely, apart from closing the lid.


  17. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    robertharvey@my-deja.com wrote:
    > Jim wrote:
    >
    >>All four of my Dell laptops have both track and touch.

    >
    >
    > Ye glods, talk about a glutton for punishment.




    My boss persists in
    > buying them, cos they are cheap, and the reason for that is horribly
    > obvious.
    >


    they're not so cheap when you see what I've done to 'em. All cranked up
    to the max.

    > This one runs hot,


    set it on a desk rather than your lap - laptops like airflow.

    won't boot properly unless I pop the DVD drive from
    > the multi-bay on the left,


    faulty drive

    the screen has been damaged by the keyboard
    > because I had the temerity to close the lid,


    nothing a sheet of cellophane won't fix - try an OHP film cellotaped
    over the panel, works wonders.

    and it came without
    > windows disks.


    secondhand, by any chance? New Dells come with recovery discs.

    I've had two power supplies in 3 months,

    ouch! Maybe they supplied you with the 70W psu instead of the 90? Tho
    the BIOS will warn you if you're using underpowered psu or batteries.

    and the USB
    > has blown up.


    You're aware of the maximum current output of a laptop usb port, aren't
    you? 500mA. For the entire circuit.

    Dell's on-site maintainence turns up OK, but never has
    > any spares and they take weeks to arrive for me to fit myself.
    >


    Gimme a shout (the email is real, or use the phone number on the site)
    with a list of what you need, I'll have a look round and see what I've got.

    > Oh, and the cursor drifts all over the screen even when no-one is
    > touching either of the two ghastly pointing devices.
    >


    I use the touchpad out of habit. I just don't like the nipple. Given a
    spare usb port tho, I'll chuck in an optical mouse. From the sounds of
    that though, it sounds like your trackpoint needs cleaning or replacing
    (which would mean a new keyboard assembly at 85 a pop)

    > If I had one Dell, I can't imagine any circumstances in which I could
    > end up with 4, apart from strange and innovative form of community
    > punishment.
    >
    > It does run suse and mandriva nicely, apart from closing the lid.
    >


    yeah, that's a problem I have with the 2.4 and 2.6 kernels and Dells -
    the ACPI daemon flat doesn't work. Other than that, they're positively
    dreamy with Linux; they're fast, very stable, and run average-hot for
    laptops with chokes on for battery optimisation.

    BTW, while we're on Dells - does anyone have an intact screen for a
    Latitude C400? It's a Samsung 12" XGA panel, FWIW the laptop is subnote
    sized, very slim, very light, P3m and stonkingly quick for what it is,
    which is why I want to get it repaired.

    --
    Cheers, http://www.dotware.co.uk
    Jim http://www.dotware-entertainment.co.uk

    Maybe the Internet has the answers I need. It certainly answered my
    questions about wang enhancement.

  18. Re: Linux on the Cheapest Laptops

    Jim wrote:
    > > won't boot properly unless I pop the DVD drive from
    > > the multi-bay on the left,

    > faulty drive

    Third since February? I suspect that the "replacements" from the
    support contract are just recycled from customer to customer without
    anyone looking at them. A suspicion only fuelled by having a
    replacement with a game DVD in it supplied.

    > > the screen has been damaged by the keyboard
    > > because I had the temerity to close the lid,

    >try an OHP film cellotaped
    >over the panel, works wonders.

    Well, that's a good bit of design I must say!


    > > and it came without windows disks.

    >secondhand, by any chance? New Dells come with recovery discs.

    Not for corporate customers in the UK they don't. They come with a
    recovery partition that can only be used to blitz your whole hard disk
    - no chance of preserving data in a separate partition. All or nothing
    recovery, which has failed to work on the two occasions I have tried
    it. Just zapped the hard disk. Official solution was to order another
    hard disk from Dell: my solution was to nick someone elses and set them
    both up under Linux and do an image copy.


+ Reply to Thread