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Re: Alternative to G3 ibook

On Wed, 19 Oct 2005 21:23:49 +0100
Rory Campbell-Lange <rory@campbell-lange.net> wrote:

> I would be grateful for any ideas of a relatively low cost, but
> ideally reliable laptop (probably from the Apple range) with good
> Linux support.

I'm going to tell you a story about quite an old laptop ;)

don't know about the 'cost' part, but if g3/500 suits you fine, then
there is nothing as durable, reliable end expandible (!)  as a PowerBook
G3/2000 (FireWire), so called Pismo. And it's nicely supported. Here's
how it looks: 


the pure black leetness ;)  I now have a regular keyboard though, that
one on the pic is a Danish one.

on the screen you see XFCE Desktop Environment I'm running on it. 

the Pismo has already got an opinion of a cult laptop. You can stuff it
with 1GB RAM, insert pretty much any ATA-5 compatible 2.5" HDD,  it has
space for an Apple Airport Wifi Card (not the Extreme one), plus one
PCMCIA slot, 2 usb 1.1 ports, 2 fireWire 400 ports, external vga and
s-video output (the s-video isn't suported by Linux). It has a bay with
removable dvd/cd-rom drive that you can swap with a second battery. On a
new battery this beauty stays alive for five hours. Imagine two
batteries. You can even upgrade it to a G4/550 CPU which would make it
better than the early G4 Titanium PowerBooks. It has been sold in two
versions - with g3/400 and g3/500 CPUs, and some range of HDD capacity.
And you can give it a combo or superdrive (dvd+cdrw)

> I understand that the airport cards in the latest laptops aren't
> supported, which is a shame.

The Airport Extreme (latest laptops) indeed isn't supported well yet,
however there have been reports of a success by using it via the Mac On
Linux project. And there is some progress in an open source driver for

The original airport (11MBit) works perfectly with Linux. 

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