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Re: [users] buying a computer

On Mon, 2 Jul 2001, Martin F. Krafft wrote:

> also sprach Faheem Mitha (on Mon, 02 Jul 2001 04:15:13PM -0400):
> > I live in North Carolina, US. I am thinking of having it custom-built and
> > it would be nice to get Debian preloaded. I looked at resellerratings.com.
> > There seem to be some good small vendors out there. For example,
> well, you learn best from installing it yourself... especially when
> you have your old workhorse around until you are down with Debian. i
> don't necessarily recommend purchasing a pre-loaded Debian machine!

Hi Martin,

The point of getting a preinstalled machine is to check that Debian works
Ok with the hardware. It is strictly a hardware issue. As I indicated
later in the message, I would probably reinstall at some point. Actually,
I was considering dualbooting two systems, keeping one at stable, and the
other fairly bleeding-edge. That way, if the bleeding-edge one got screwed
up, I would still have a working system to use, and could more easily
resinstall. They would share the same /home, of course.

I've already installed potato on a machine (not mine) and it went fairly
smoothly, though the monitor's X resolution is not too great, but then the
monitor is a piece of junk. The most significant problem was that the
time of day was wrong.

I am going to install Debian on my current machine soon.

> > My main question is -- can anyone recommend a good firm to custom-build
> > computers for Linux? It would be a big plus if said firm knows enough to
> > be able to install Debian on it. I might do a reinstall, but it would be
> > greatly reassuring to know that it works on the computer in the first
> > place. I would hate to buy a new computer and find Debian refuses to work
> > properly on it. That is the stuff of nightmares.
> if linux works, debian will work. if redhat works, debian will work.

What about proprietary binary-only modules designed to work only with
Redhat? I have heard rumours of such strange beasts.

> > Has anyone bought computers from Dell recently? They do Linux installs
> > these days, but I don't know how good it is, and it seems to be
> > exclusively Redhat too. I don't see why there is this big concentration on
> > Redhat.
> dell makes nice computers and dell has good support services, if you
> buy the 24hour onsite support, which I'd recommend (i did and never
> regretted it). however, their linux installs are disgusting. of
> course, only redhat, and then with *everything* installed.

The linux information on their page is practically invisible. Can anyone
give me a link where they actually talk about preinstalled Linux

> seriously, if i were you, I'd build the computer yourself from parts
> and then put debian on it from scratch - and use us for help.

I do like the idea of building a computer myself. It would be very
instructive, I am sure, and it is very much in the spirit of free
software. And it would set me free from having to depend on other people's
expertise, which is always a good thing.

However, I must admit I am slightly intimidated by the notion. How
difficult is it to assemble a computer from scratch? What kind of
documentation do you need on hand? I would find it very reassuring to hear
from people who have done this successfully with little experience. I
would particularly be interested in knowing how difficult it is to find
compatible components to fit together, and how much time fitting the
pieces together actually takes.

> that's all i can tell you. i am very glad that you found your way to
> debian!!!

Thanks, me too. Actually, I've been considering it for a while, but I am
slow to take action on such things.

                             Sincerely, Faheem Mitha.

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