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Re: Laptop Recommendations

On Fri, Mar 16, 2001 at 04:44:03PM -0000, Todd Kokoszka wrote:
> Hi,
> I'm interested in buying an old laptop and installing Debian on it. What are 
> people's recommendations?
 Get something with enough RAM for what you want.  Esp. older laptops
sometimes use custom RAM that only works with that model, so upgrades are
 Try to get one with at lithium battery, since they're better.
Nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries are ok.  Don't get nickel-cadmium,
since they don't hold as much charge, and suffer from the "memory effect",
where they lose effective capacity if you don't discharge them all the way.
(you can reverse this a bit, but it's not good.)

 In general, laptop upgrades cost a lot more than for desktop machines.
Don't buy a really cheap laptop and plan to upgrade.  (unless it was really,
really cheap, and not too bad.)  Hard drives are an exception.  Laptop ones
cost more, but they are compatible.

 Some laptops with slow-by-modern-standards processors have CPUs which were
the fastest for their time, and use a lot of power.  I've heard tales of
P200MMX laptops that would run for half an hour on a full charge.  If
you're going to be near an outlet most of the time, you can get away with
buying a power-hungry laptop, though.

 Another thing to watch for is that older laptops might not be PCI-based, in
which case they probably won't take 32-bit (cardbus) PC cards, and you won't
be able to tweak the hard drive performance with hdparm very well
(probably).  If this matters to you, then get a PCI laptop.  (I think most
pentium laptops would use PCI).

#define X(x,y) x##y
Peter Cordes ;  e-mail: X(peter@llama.nslug. , ns.ca)

"The gods confound the man who first found out how to distinguish the hours!
 Confound him, too, who in this place set up a sundial, to cut and hack
 my day so wretchedly into small pieces!" -- Plautus, 200 BCE

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