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Re: 64-bit netbooks with Debian linux

On 5/3/2010 4:29 PM, Peter Tenenbaum wrote:
Hi, everyone --

I guess I should clarify my desirement for 64-bit.  There are two things
here.  First, I intend to build a home computer which will run linux,
and it will be 64-bit; since I'm quite new to maintaining my own linux
computers, I'd rather limit the number of differences between the home
machine and my portable.  Second is just a desire to avoid early
obsolescence in the portable, since at some point I expect 64 bit to
become the standard and 32-bit to fade into the past.  That day may not
be near, and in any event it may be crazy to worry about obsolescence of
a computer which costs less than an iPod, but that's just the way I roll.

It also sounds like the respndents to my first message are underwhelmed
by netbooks in general and recommend that I look at a low-end notebook /
laptop computer instead.  I confess that the distinction is a bit blurry
to me.

In any event, with those caveats, perhaps I should ask more generally
for recommendations of netbooks or smallish laptops which people
recommend as being compatible with Debian linux.

Thanks again,

I was a respondent who questioned the netbook route, but I see now that there may be good reasons to prefer one.

However, most netbooks are deliberately crippled, such as allowing only 1 or 2 GB of memory when there is no technical reason why 4 GB shouldn't work. It is a matter of segmenting a market, and manufacturers want netbooks to have specific capabilities for marketing reasons, not technical ones.

I wanted to suggest that you choose a machine based on your needs, and I wanted you to question your initial assumptions.

However, I see you have done some thinking about it, and future-proofing *does* seem like a good reason to get a dual-core, 64-bit machine.

With 64 bits, you will need more memory, so I suggest you look for a machine that can use 4 GB of memory.

I suggest also that you make sure that the machine you get can use solid-state storage devices. In time, the advantages of SSDs will make them compelling, though now they are too expensive. That is, you will probably buy a machine with a standard notebook HD, but if you ever need to replace it, being able to replace it with an SSD gives you another option. This also is in the area of future-proofing.

Just a couple of suggestions. I would like to hear more from other people. (I am also contemplating a portable computer purchase.)


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