Ubuntu Laptop Suggestion

NoOp glgxg at sbcglobal.net
Sun Jun 7 23:53:21 UTC 2009

On 06/05/2009 11:53 AM, Shannon McMackin wrote:
> On 06/05/2009 01:31 PM, Bill Moseley wrote:
>> This is a bit off topic, but a sixth grader from my kid's school asked
>> for recommendations for a laptop.  He says he's saved up about $400[2]
>> (we are in the US) and wants to learn Linux and programming.
>> My Linux laptops have always been Thinkpads, but that's out of his
>> price range.
>> True, it's easy to find Linux laptops on-line, but at his price range
>> I'm concerned with hardware compatibility.  I can research, but I
>> thought it worth a try asking here just in case anyone has been
>> through this lately or seen any great deals in that price range.
>> Also, my Thinkpads have always had plenty of power -- so I don't have
>> experience with low-end laptops.  For example, most the low price
>> units are Celeron 2.16GHz machines[1] so I wonder if things like
>> compiz will even run.
>> Sorry, I'm not that up on hardware.
>> Thanks,
>> [1] Some examples:
>> http://www.dell.com/content/topics/segtopic.aspx/linux_3x?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs
>> http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=AS5335-2238-R&cat=NBB&cpc=NBBbsc
>> [2] He seems to have saved more than most Americans. ;)
> The Acer Aspire One works very well with the latest Jaunty remix.  Asus 
> has a few as well that come pre-loaded.  IdeaPad S10 should work well or 
> the newer S20 if he saves some more.
> The other thought of a refurbished Thinkpad is also good.  T41 was a 
> very sturdy linux laptop...

I wouldn't touch Thinkpads with a 10 ft. pole. I have:

2 T30's - both have common Thinkpad problems:
 - 1 has a dead RAM slot
 - 1 has a screwed up motherboard - won't boot into bios, no beeps
1 T21 - has the infamous 'Thinkpad Blink of Death'

However I also have an IBM A21M - this old 650Mhz machine is the *only*
reliable IBM laptop in the bunch. Swapped out a busted LCD from an old
Dell junker, added a 30Gb hard drive and 384Mb of RAM & it chugs right
along. Only problems are: 1) the battery is dead & I'm too cheap to
spend $60 on a new battery, 2) 384Mb of is just OK but new memory for
old machines like this is *very* expensive.

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