Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Linux Business Hardware

Review: LinuxCertified LC2210 Laptop 155

Posted by timothy
from the it-plays-oggs dept.
'It's me' writes "OSNews reviews LinuxCertified's LC2210 laptop, which comes with Xandros Desktop 2.0. That laptop is meant to be 100% certified with Linux, but Xandros seemed to have problems with it (namely there is no "sleep" function, while WiFi was not as robust as users would want it). LinuxCertified said that newer distros should be able to support this laptop with no hickups. The reviewer concludes that this a great purchase, as long as you are more selective over the distro installed."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Review: LinuxCertified LC2210 Laptop

Comments Filter:
  • by odano (735445) * on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @03:55AM (#9049143)
    that certified actually doesn't mean certified completely. I'm sure this will instill a lot of confidence in non-linux users going to linux.
    • You said it. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:38AM (#9049259)
      I'm not as patient as I wish I was, which is a failing many share. As a result I don't want to spend spare hours I don't have just trying to get a system to do what I need it to do. No, installing Linux isn't difficult. But trying to figure out how to install additional (and often essential) stuff, especially drivers, is not easy, particularly if you're unfortunate enough to have spent the past X (meaning, too many) years of your life becoming familiar with Windows, and forgetting about something called a command line (and a very different syntax).

      I know Windows pretty damn well now (which is why I'd love to switch to Linux...), and I began in the dark days of MS-DOS, but back then I had the time and the contacts to get help with it, to get going. That's not an option available to me any more, or most of those like me who want to switch after years as Windoze Lusers.

      The hand-holding of knowledgable, experienced users helped me get started with computers, and from there I could start figuring things out for myself, but now I just need Linux to work. Once I can do what I need to, then maybe I can tinker and become familiar with the other, more geeky bits. But not if I'm expected or required to spend untold hours of hair-pulling and HOWTO-reading just to get the computer to actually work.

      Come on Linux folk: start getting fully-working machines to market, and the rest of us will take the plunge. Or do you feel it should be the exclusive province of uber-geeks...?
      • Re:You said it. (Score:3, Insightful)

        by cyborch (524661)

        I think I'm getting too old for world domination. These days I'd rather have people NOT use linux. There are two issues, as I see it:

        Firstly, if my grandma started to use linux in stead of windows then she would come to me and ask me for help. Right now she sticks to asking windows people for help.

        Secondly, I think people should use what works for them. If windows works for you then use windows. There is no need to switch to linux merely for the sake of switching to linux. If you feel like switching to

        • Firstly, if my grandma started to use linux in stead of windows then she would come to me and ask me for help. Right now she sticks to asking windows people for help.

          for my mom, *I* am the windows person. if she had a linux install, I would also be the linux guy. personally, i'd rather be the linux support guy.

          I think people should use what works for them. If windows works for you then use windows. There is no need to switch to linux merely for the sake of switching to linux.

          which is why i said

        • Secondly, I think people should use what works for them. If windows works for you then use windows.

          Unfortunately, Windows is causing major problems for people OTHER than its users, on the net and elsewhere, due to its poor design.

          First: The poor security of windows results in repeated bursts of traffic clogging the net for days at a time, as the latest security vulnerabilities are exploited by viruses and worms. Microsoft has shown little competence at fixing these issues, which are becoming more rathe
      • Or do you feel it should be the exclusive province of uber-geeks...?

        Too often the same applies to Windows 2000 and Windows XP. Come on, admit it. Bet you can't accurately remember how many of your family members and friends you've helped with problems installing hardware on Windows.

        You probably don't remember because when it comes to Windows, all's forgiven when things go wrong. It's expected things will go wrong, but that's alright. It's Windows. (I help businesses, every day, with their Windows
        • You probably don't remember because when it comes to Windows, all's forgiven when things go wrong. It's expected things will go wrong, but that's alright. It's Windows.

          Although I really like Linux, I have to disagree with you. Most of the time, Windows does just fine with installing new hardware. The only time when Windows is a real pain is when it fails to correctly identify and install hardware. At that point, it becomes more difficult to deal with than Linux because it does such a good job of hiding

    • by Lumpy (12016) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:59AM (#9049483) Homepage
      and it pretty much means low-end.

      I looked over the specs and the video on it is extremely dismal... intel chipset shared memory video... SIS video would have been better.

      you are better off buying a different brand with higher end components and ignoring the useless modem or getting it without all the "built in's" and using pcmcia cards for greater compatability and performance.

      It is a very expensive low end laptop. a linux user is better off with a non "certified" regular brand from HP or sony.
    • by emc (19333)
      It seems that the author has confused the word "robust" for "functional".

      The whole Wifi experience is just not robust, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't

      This should read:
      The whole Wifi experience is just not functional, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't
  • Well... (Score:4, Funny)

    by gnu-sucks (561404) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @03:56AM (#9049147) Journal

    The reviewer concludes that this a great purchase, as long as you are more selective over the distro installed.

    Well, thats the case with windows machines too.

    • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gnu-sucks (561404) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:22AM (#9049217) Journal

      And just to validate my statement, let me mention briefl the 'ups' of the laptop, and the 'downs':

      ups:

      The laptop has a pretty good, bright screen (minus one dead pixel, visible when the background is dark).

      Performance is very good. In fact, I think that laptop has more sprightly response and speed than any of my other machines here. KDE's and Xandros' applications pretty much load instantly. 3D support is also preconfigured and display a flight simulator with no lag at all.

      The feel and construction of the laptop is very solid overall. The keyboard's feel is also very good, I just wish the PgUp key was not just next to the BACKSPACE key...

      I tried out my USB Palm device and it worked out well with any of the usb slots. Ethernet also worked very well and with no problems. I burned an ISO image with the DVD/CD-RW combo drive, which also worked fine. On board speakers did the job as expected as well.

      Being a Centrino, battery life is pretty good.

      ok, now the downs:

      While this product is Linux-certified, the "sleep" function simply doesn't work.

      Half the time the WiFi card won't initialize

      When I visited the KDE control center and clicked the "monitor" preference panel, Xandros greeted me with an alert box telling me that it won't allow me to do anything

      On the front of the laptop, there are four "quick launch internet buttons" for email, browsing etc, but pressing them does nothing at all. Apparently there is no driver for them or a remapping tool available on Xandros.

      So basically, the battery, display, and keyboard work. As does the USB, sound, cd-burner, and presumably the firewire port. Unfortunately, the sleep function does not, nor do the included extra shortcut keys. And to top it off, the wifi gui setup appears to have some issues.

      Now, these are all rather standard issues with a non-linux certified laptop. Regular hardware (video, mouse, keyboard, cdrom) works, and laptop-specific hardware (sleep, wifi pcmcia cards, funky extra keys) does not. However, with linux certification, I would expect at least sleep to work. Thats a core point of a laptop. And Wifi today is so essential to working without being plugged in, I'd rate it right up with sleep and battery life.

      While this laptop does for some reason claim to be linux certified, anyone can buy an off-the-shelf compaq, ibm, toshiba, or viao and have the same experience. The only thing that makes this laptop, complete with its 'internet shortcut keys' that don't work, linux-certified is that it comes without windows.

      • So basically... linux certified is saying that I can get it to boot up, keyboard, mouse, and an X interface all work

        WTF

        I'm sorry, but the laptop I'm running on right now is more linux-compatible than the so-called certified machine, and even then I wouldn't put a stamp on it (winmodem hasn't a 'nix driver yet).

        all the major hardware/functionality to work (including your keyboard/mouse/video/modem/NICs/keys/sound/APM).

        Seriously, if I bought a "certified" laptop only to find that these things didn't
      • >>Now, these are all rather standard issues with a non-linux certified laptop
        Could not agree more. I had exactly the same set of issues with Xandros on my Fujitsu E series.
        The only reason I still boot Windows is because I need a reliable sleep function on my laptops. I believe there are many like me.
    • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by arivanov (12034) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:28AM (#9049236) Homepage
      I would like the moderators who modded down this comment to confess if they have ever tried to run:

      Retail Windows (any variety) on a Vaio or a recent Stinkpad.

      There is such a thing as a windows distro. Big vendors have always gone and replaced the parts of windows that sting particularly bad with parts that more or less work. So it is in fact: which particular vendor variety of Windows are you running:

      Examples:

      1. Dell and Windows NT frustration - get working PCMCIA hot-plug. If you run retail - you do not.
      2. Sony and Windows 2000 - get working power management. If you run retail - you do not.
      3. IBM and Windows XP - get working WEP with preshared 128 bit keys and a reasonable network connection manager (that can make any connection interdependent on each other, not just dialup and execute external commands to bring connections.)

      So on so forth.
      • Retail Windows (any variety) on a Vaio or a recent Stinkpad.

        Congratulations for placing yourself in the "so l33t I can't spell" camp with that comment. Though I admit, "Stinkpad" is a bit more inventive than "Windoze".

        Anyway, I am in fact using Windows XP on a ThinkPad, less than a year old. I wiped the hard drive when I got it, installed Windows XP from scratch, and downloaded the drivers I needed from IBM's website. Everything, including WEP, is working marvelously. Best laptop I ever used.

        I wo
  • by Phidoux (705500) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @03:57AM (#9049149) Homepage
    Even if there are a few hiccups, it's still nice to know that there are laptops available that don't have the "Designed for Microsoft" sticker on them.
    • yeah, but it might as well - four glaring internet shortcut keys are completely unsupported by the 'supported' operating system. These keys, no doubt, would work under windows, which the laptop is clearly designed for.

      Of course, its nice not paying the microsoft tax on the sale though!!!
      • Maybe it is not supported in combination with commandline and lynx.

        But i am sitting right here with a Microsoft Internet Keyboard (hey, i got it for free) and all keys are working with Gnome 2.6

        • You know, you'd think that would work too, but the difference may be in that the keys on the laptop are not actually part of the keyboard - and thus might require a driver, in addition to teaching the software how to respond to them.
      • by sgtron (35704)
        This guy was modded as troll, but I have no idea why.. apart from his user name maybe.. but I can forgive that because his comment makes sense. listen, if you're going to call yourself "linux certified" then dammit your products had better work 100% as shipped! If I wanted a laptop that had buttons that didn't work with linux I'd keep my crappy hp pavillion laptop with all those keys that mean something to windows but to fedora (which it now runs) don't do anything. But no, I want a linux certified lapto
  • Interesting (Score:5, Interesting)

    by moxruby (152805) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @03:58AM (#9049152)
    This is an encouraging step forward. I've bought a few laptops off ebay in my time and spent many an hour researching beforehand to ensure that every part would work with my favourite OS.

    What would be great would be an independant company that could certify linux compatibility for a one off fee. I realise there are various websites where users can submit whether it worked for them or not, but it can take a while for new hardware to be listed and the information is often out of date.
  • Power management (Score:5, Interesting)

    by manavendra (688020) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:00AM (#9049158) Homepage Journal
    I'm not particularly in touch with this aspect of Linux, but I've heard that power management features haven't been all that great in Linux...and if that's true, then it comes as no surprise that there isn't a "sleep" function.

    For linux acceptability and use to grow, as others have been mentioning, it has to have other, not-so-geek important features that ordinary users will keep asking for
    • Re:Power management (Score:5, Informative)

      by dot-magnon (730521) <co AT auralvision DOT no> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:02AM (#9049164) Homepage
      Power management and all these kinds of functions are well supported by Linux itself and the GUI systems. The problems are hardware inconsistency, that makes it very hard to provide non-proprietary drivers. There's no hardware vendor that provide you with linux drivers for their odd power management systems.
      • The problems are hardware inconsistency, that makes it very hard to provide non-proprietary drivers

        With pre-packaged systems from a specific vendor, couldn't the Linux distro-company get drives from the OEM? Surely there has to be a provision in the contract clauses somewhere enabling them to get their hands on the drives for compatibility etc?

        If not, then it's a very disheartening in-fight within the ranks of the vendor selling the Laptops, and you know that wouldn't take them too far!
        • Linux open source distribution vendors do not want to use proprietary software in their free systems. Some provide things like NVIDIA drivers, Macromedia Flash players etc. in their paid systems, and give links to their free customers. That's not the main problem. Vendors that give out binary support for their systems, get that used. We see that with Nvidia and ATI, et cetera. The problem is that these vendors do not want to waste resources on making Linux drivers. That's the problem.
      • Re:Power management (Score:4, Informative)

        by Dever (564514) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:23AM (#9049220) Journal
        You know, having installed linux on my laptops (compaq cx1000 and vaio grt160) and moved on from APM to ACPI daemon, i've had excellent power management. i've got my prism2 based wlan cards working fine, and can use powermanagement fine (S1...).

        You can even get custom DSDT's (Differentiated System Description Table, config info about the underlying system) for many laptops that have broken implementations (the bane of linux compatibility in most cases imo). It's not perfect yet, but it's come really far.

        A good distro for seeing if bits and pieces work on newish laptops (read:after2001 or so) quickly is suse. i slap it on a 2 gig partition and see what happens.

        although in the case of suse and many others until recently, centrino wlan was not doable

      • Re:Power management (Score:4, Informative)

        by prockcore (543967) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:24AM (#9049226)
        Power management and all these kinds of functions are well supported by Linux itself and the GUI systems. The problems are hardware inconsistency,

        That's true. The power management on PPC Linux for powerbooks works wonderfully. Probably because the power management for powerbooks is all the same.

        By wonderfully I mean that the LCD will dim after a few minutes of being idle, it will suspend after 10 minutes of being idle, it will suspend and wakeup correctly when the lid is shut and opened.
        • That's true. The power management on PPC Linux for powerbooks works wonderfully. Probably because the power management for powerbooks is all the same.

          ...unless you happen to have a machine with Nvidia display adapter (try any 12" PBook), in which case the sleep won't work, as the kernel does not know how to wake up the display adapter from sleep.

          See here. [yellowdoglinux.com]

          (It also seems that the thermal management [yellowdoglinux.com] in 17" PBooks isn't supported at all, which is rather severe).

          The only linux I've ever attempted to run in
          • .unless you happen to have a machine with Nvidia display adapter (try any 12" PBook), in which case the sleep won't work, as the kernel does not know how to wake up the display adapter from sleep.

            I didn't know that, hopefully they'll come up with a fix for that.

            However, to be fair, a co-worker has a 12" iBook that always goes to sleep when you close the lid, even if you have an external monitor, kb and mouse hooked up. That's under Panther.
            • Well, that is iBook - their display adapters are ATIs. Only 12" PowerBooks have Nvidias.

              I don't really think that we will see fix for the PM problem of Nvidia's cards anytime soon, as Nvidia does not disclosure any specs. On x86 laptops you can use their own proprietary binary drivers, but on PowerPCs you're out of luck.

              If you want to buy an Apple's laptop and plan to run Linux on it, make sure to get either iBook or 15" PowerBook to avoid worst hassles.

              (My information about the sleep problem being Nvidi
      • I had a Dell Inspiron 5000 that would NOT sleep with Linux installed if X Windows was running - it would hang on wake every time.

        The exact same machine worked perfectly with FreeBSD + X Windows (same version), which is why I originally tried FreeBSD (and I still use it). I always assumed this was a Linux problem, since that was the only different piece of the puzzle.

    • Re:Power management (Score:2, Interesting)

      by curious.corn (167387)
      Most hardware vendors have poor bios implementations for standard ACPI functions. Probably it's because, as everything in the IT market, the products are rushed to market without proper testing and quality control. Later on it's easier to fix the bugs with custom 'distorted' drivers that provide proper functionality on Windows. Manufacturers obviously don't want to overwhelm customers with repeated bios updates that could potentially produce a 'bricktop' and would ruin their reputations. On the other hand t
    • Well, power management (the apmd module) has been know to hang quite a few laptops, including mine when trying to install the basics. You have to disable it during install, and even then you have to use Gnome over Kde, as Kde uses some related functions anyways (thus hanging the laptop). This was damn annoying to figure out, considering I'm a total n00b (actually a bit less after all this ;) Glad I had and old desktop where I ran smoothly without a fuzz... that motivated me to get it running on the laptop
    • Re:Power management (Score:4, Informative)

      by 10Ghz (453478) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @07:42AM (#9049806)
      I'm not particularly in touch with this aspect of Linux, but I've heard that power management features haven't been all that great in Linux


      From what I have heard, the Linux-implementation of APM/ACPI is pretty good. It follows the spec closely. The problem is that Microsofts implementation is not as good. It has bugs and other "weird things" in it.

      Now, just about all laptops and the like are "designed for Windows XP" or some other crap like that. So they need to work with Windows and it's APM/ACPI-implementation. And that means it has to go around the bugs in the MS's implementation of it. While they do that, they deviate further away from the spec, and that means that implementations that follow the official spec more closely (like Linux) have problems with it.
  • by aardwolf204 (630780) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:02AM (#9049162)
    That laptop is meant to be 100% certified with Linux, but Xandros seemed to have problems with it (namely there is no "sleep" function)

    Sleep?! Linux [thinkgeek.com] geeks [thinkgeek.com] dont [thinkgeek.com] need [thinkgeek.com] no [thinkgeek.com] stinkin' [thinkgeek.com] sleep! [thinkgeek.com]

    But seriously, nice to see linux certified consumer hardware making its way into the market.

    Sorry for they thinkgeek plugging, not associated, just a happy part of the smart masses
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Linux has by far better sleep support. It shuts down my monitors automatically and it doesn't crash when I move the mouse / press a key afterwards.
      Also, I can do a hdparm -y /dev/hdx anytime to spindown a disk. Real handy. hdparm -Y /dev/hdx makes it shutdown completely until a reboot so be careful with that.
      The hibernate function came a little late because, well, who needs that? Most of the time the PC keeps running 24/7 just so the user can always ssh to it.

      There are several issues with hibernating, like
      • Anyway, this may be a big step forward. I hate those Windows stickers. Maybe we'll see models with Penguin stickers on them in stores in a few years so people can say 'Oh how cute it comes with this lovely fat penguin on it!' :)

        Now that you mention it, having a cute little "Certified" penguin sticker slapped on PCs and Laptops next to the windows sticker would really help linux adoption. Not sure who that certificate issuer would be, and what hardware requirements would need to be met, but I'm sure it w
  • Advantages ? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by farley13 (773489) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:11AM (#9049183)
    "that this a great purchase"
    What exactly is the promise of a Linux certified laptop ? Honest. With off and on support of WiFi, and neglible power saving I don't see any advantage. The hardware itself doesn't sound like anything special. With the use of linux on embeded systems rising, it would be great to see a more fine tuned approach to specialized 'Laptop' distros. heh!

    I don't see this appealing to Joe User outa the box either, considering the hoops one would have to go through to get it completely 'functional'. Might as well install a fresh distro and make sure the hardware you buy is well supported. I know of at least a few freinds with better laptop setups, who did exactly that.

    Many more generations to go! right?
    • Re:Advantages ? (Score:2, Informative)

      by jole (4348)
      Moreover, the offered SXGA+ screen does not work with Linux. It is ridiculous that some basic parts (like screen and power management) of a 'Linux-certified' laptop just don't work. IMHO Intel is shooting itself on the foot by not supporting its own hardware. I hope that AMD comes up with a good, supported competitor for Centrino ASAP.

      For those wanting to have a working UNIX-laptop, I would recommend buying a PowerBook or an iBook instead of Linux-laptop. Everything works like charm - just apt-get it with
  • huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by matticus (93537) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:19AM (#9049206) Homepage
    He recommends the laptop "with another distribution", but doesn't actually try it with another distribution. There are no pictures of the laptop, and a very poor description of it. I smell "reviewer who got a free laptop if he would write a review but wasn't qualified to do so".
    • Re:huh? (Score:2, Informative)

      by next1 (742094)
      fyi: review from another distro (redhat) [linuxplanet.com].
  • Don't they still have the 2.4 Kernel? I would assume the missing power features would have worked with a 2.6 Kernel or even a 2.4 Kernel with the ACPI-Patches.
    • Xandros 2.0 (at least the Business edition I've been using) run the 2.4.24 kernel with some patches backported to the kernel. ACPI is working fine on 2.4.24, no tinkering required.
  • by TheBigOh(n) (618100) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:29AM (#9049244)
    Everything should work out of the box or there is no point in trying to sell it. I am sorry, but if I buy something that says linux certified on it, the sleep function should work without any effort my part. Why not just hack at a new machine without the linux sticker on it myself like I have been doing all these years? Most of us linux folk get some sort of twisted pleasure out of that kind of thing anyway. Furthermore, why would a linux novice buy a machine without a working sleep function? Its one thing to sell a house or a car and say that it is an ole' fixer upper. A laptop? C' mon.

    Yes it is a great step forward, but it just seems like a half-assed one to me. Call this trolling, but if linux ever hopes to gain any respect as a desktop OS, then people shouldn't be selling "linux certified" products that don't work as they should.
    • I agree that stuff should 'just work' out of the box. According to the LinuxCertified website [linuxcertified.com], this laptop costs $1399. I recently bought an Apple iBook with similar specs for about the same price. The Apple works correctly straight out of the box and OS X runs nearly all Linux programs for which the source is available. Besides that, it gives you the option of using commercial products like Quicken or Adobe Photoshop, if you need to use those for anything.

      Since Apple's laptop prices are about the same
      • This may not be the one, but wouldn't it be nice if there was a notebook designed for Linux first, Windows second?
        • How about they stop cutting horrible corners and follow the specs?

          The reason why laptops often don't work 100% in linux is because developers don't follow specs then write windows drivers to cover up missing hardware functionality.

          Tom
        • This may not be the one, but wouldn't it be nice if there was a notebook designed for Linux first, Windows second?

          You can already get laptops designed to run UNIX. You can get an Apple iBook for the same price as an x86 and use OS X, which is a full-featured UNIX system. Virtually all of the open-source software you'd use on a Linux or FreeBSD system runs on OS X, even programs that require X Windows. Linux, on the other hand, has a long way to go before it catches up with Apple.

          There are plenty o

      • Apples to Oranges (Score:2, Informative)

        by jole (4348)
        If you need to develop with Java using a modern IDE, an Apple laptop might not be what you are looking for. G4 is a lot slower running Eclipse than Pentium-M.

        Anyway - I am currently typing an 800Mhz iBook G4 very happily and even run Eclipse on this one occasionally :)
  • Dell Inspiron 600m (Score:5, Informative)

    by mcrbids (148650) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:32AM (#9049245) Journal
    It works!

    Really, though. For my needs, it's AWESOME. I use Fedora C1.

    X works out of the gate, as expected. CHECK

    Sound works with the base install, as expected. CHECK

    Network card works immediately, as expected, at 1 Gb. (w00t!) CHECK

    CD-Burner works immediately, as expected. CHECK

    DVD works simply by updating /etc/yum.conf with the offshore repositories that have decsslib. CHECK

    ACPI power management and CPU throttling (with cpudyn) works easily. (had to google to find that I had to put "acpi=force" on the linux line in grub.conf) CHECK

    USB stuff works as expected in the base install. I've hot swapped my mouse and a digital camera - both work instantly and easily. CHECK

    What's left?

    1) The modem is a funky broadcom chipset that's not supported by linmodem or pctel drivers. I have an old 33.6 3com pcmcia modem card that works fine. =/

    2) Wireless with the Intel 2200 BG chipset is spotty, if at all. (so far, unable to confirm operation using ndiswrapper [sourceforge.net]) =/

    3) I haven't yet gotten it to see my Verizon Cell phone as a modem to use it for anytime/anywhere/slow service in those rare cases it's needed. For now I'll boot into WinXP when this is needed. =/

    Given the problem - that of allowing me to retain the functional capacity of my 2 Ghz Athlon Desktop system in a laptop, it's a resounding success, allowing me to retain my productivity just about anywhere.

    Would I *LIKE* wireless? Would I *LIKE* modem w/o card? Sure I would - and I'm still not convinced that wireless won't work.

    But the primary issue for me is productivity - not necessarily having every last bell and whistle.

    Oh, and I did use 9 of the 60 GB of disk space to keep the copy of XP Home running in those rare cases that I really do need it. (Hello wireless)
    • DVD works simply by updating /etc/yum.conf with the offshore repositories that have decsslib. CHECK

      ACPI power management and CPU throttling (with cpudyn) works easily. (had to google to find that I had to put "acpi=force" on the linux line in grub.conf) CHECK


      Anyone who is new ( 6 months experience) to Linux: It doesn't work.
    • You just hit on my major beef with all of the laptops I've found with Linux Pre-installed. They all seem to be marketed to geeks and cost more (often a lot more) than laptops from other vendors, even the ones who claim they don't pay any MS tax. Granted my time isn't worth much at the moment, but I'd rather pay a few hundred dollars less and spend the hour or so to install Mandrake myself.
  • by burtonator (70115) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:47AM (#9049280)
    ACPI... Advanced Configuration and Power Interface

    This is the biggest difficulty right now with Linux and laptops. I've had an Inspiron 8600 for months now and it still can't suspend (to memory or to disk).

    If you want to get ACPI working correctly a kernel recompile is necessary and I'm sorry but users aren't going to do this.

    Either we step forward and fix these issues or we can't expect users or vendors to take Linux seriously as a desktop operating system.

    We're so close but 20% of the remaining functionality is 80% of the work.

    Sad..

    Suspend is NOT an optional feature on a laptop...
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I have an inspiron 8600 as well and I did some extensive research and recompiling in getting the ACPI features going just as all those features were developing. Those kinks are largely worked out now so the problem lies not so much in the ACPI capabilities as in the hardware support. The Nvidia drivers for linux just are not capable of sleeping. Actually they are capable of sleeping just not waking up again. They admit as much in their own documentation. Unfortunately Nvidia seems to be in no hurry to fix t
  • Wait A Minute (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The reviewer concludes that this a great purchase, as long as you are more selective over the distro installed.

    Wouldn't this statement be true of almost any laptop?
  • I don't get it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Masa (74401) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:49AM (#9049287) Journal
    This laptop should be "Linux certified" and even the review says: "Overall, this is a well-working, robust laptop, hardware-wise. My problems were all OS-related." So, what kind of a certification is this? I thought that the whole point on "certifying" something is same as promising that there are no hick-ups in the product - in hardware-wise or software-wise. Why would the company, who makes this kinds of promises, ship the hardware with the software which clearly doesn't support the hardware fully? They even admit that the computer isn't fully functional with Xandros Desktop 2.0.

    I can see that in this case the "certification" is more of a promise that the machine will work with future versions of Linux distributions (which is stupid, because the LinuxCertified.com says: "We make sure that all the core components, including the screen in its full resolution, sound etc., are correctly configured with Linux.", which at least for me, is a promise of fully functional OS shipped with the product).

    Consumers in general aren't interested in future compatibility of products. They want fully functional product NOW. Without any hassle of installing newer version of the OS later.

    In general, I like the idea that there will be companies who are willing to guarantee that the hardware will work with Linux. But I also want to see products that are usable without any additional tinkering.
  • Laptop quality (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pekoe (623399) <smiorgan@n t l w o rld.com> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:50AM (#9049291)
    Trying not to troll... My next computer will probably be a laptop, and it will be an iBook - maily because they're better made than other notebooks, rather than because I'm a Mac fan (I'm not, at least not yet). At the moment, the choice is a no-brainer. I can get a sub-1000 quid iBook these days that will do all that I want a wintel/*nix laptop for, but with very good quality hardware and *nix set-up with everything working. Compare that to spending the same cash on a less sturdy wintel item with an OS I dislike, or a less sturdy item with a reduced functionality for linux (simply because linux on a laptop is a pig to get working). I'm sure it can be done, but I just don't want to invest cash and then time as well getting it working. But rather than saying "Use OSX!" I'd say "take a lesson from Apple". Engineer a linux solution specifically for the hardware. Because trying to make it work with every distro is plainly not working, and that's not going to get me to part with my hard-earned wedge...
    • Re:Laptop quality (Score:4, Informative)

      by 4lex (648184) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:44AM (#9049446) Homepage Journal
      You will notice (or at least I did) that getting an ibook working with linux is pretty easy. Reason? Unlikely with PCs, there are only so many ibook models, so it's very easy to find a HOWTO someone with your *exact* configuration kindly wrote. You can get, if you are lucky (like I was) even the .config for your shiny new 2.6.5 kernel :)
    • The only thing that has prevented me from buying an iBook or PowerBook is the low resolution LCD screens Apple uses in their products. Having a high resolution screen is one of the main features I look for when I purchased my laptop. On Apple's 15" PowerBook, the only resolution is 1280 x 854. A Dell I8600 has an option to get a 15" Wide screen UXGA which has a resolution of 1680 x 1050 the same resolution of Apple's 20" iMac.
  • ...because the last thing you'd want is to hick your laptop up. I've now got disturbing mental images of an old Toshiba laptop up on blocks with a rattlecan paintjob.
  • Ahhhhhhhh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Graymalkin (13732) * on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:13AM (#9049364)
    Why isn't there a Slashbox that lets me ignore all "reviews" written by Eugenia Loli-Queru. She's proved time and time again that she couldn't review herself out of a paper cup.

    • How well does the integrated graphics chip work?
    • Does the combo drive burn more than ISO images properly, you know those new fangled audio CDs and maybe a data backup disc? Does it read DVD-Rs properly and do DVD movies play without too much trouble?
    • If she is going to do a review of a piece of hardware it ought to be tested. If she can finagle a laptop out of someone she should be able to get a Firewire hard drive for testing purposes.
    • "Being a Centrino..." doesn't mean squat to me. What sort of work was she doing where the battery chugged along for 4.5 hours? Was that 4.5 hours of web browsing or 4.5 hours of Quake 3? How come the screen wasn't dim-able?


    These are all questions that should have been answered, they certainly were hinted at. But no, show Eugenia some pretty pictures and she'll do a friggin backflip for you. This thing is hardly functional and she gave it seven points out of ten. In the configuration shipping to customers it won't go to sleep and the WiFi is shoddy and unreliable at best. How in the hell can something like that get seven points out of ten? Somebody got themselves a free toy laptop and gave the POS a good mark-up so the company will let her keep it. This article needs to be posted in the "How to Review Linux" story as a fine example of how not to write a review.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      And we all know that /. editors LOVE geekgirls! Remember Blackbird Alder? What did she do professionally that 1,000s of guygeeks can't, and better? Nothing. But she's a...well...she. A geekgirl stereotype, right out of Hollywood's 'People in Computers' 101 course: hard as nails, cool as ice, big boots, black clothes.

      Oh, and being the object of one /. editor in particular certainly helped to keep her "news" item on the /. front page for a record length of time.

      So that's all there is to it: be a chick compu
      • If she's so poor at what she does, ask why her personal tech site is one of the few sites outside of Slashdot that can cause the Slashdot effect (web servers melting into pools of liquid metal and trickling under the door of the server room), and why its discussions frequently outclass /.'s for informative/interesting/insightful comments despite being a tenth of the size?
    • >Why isn't there a Slashbox that lets me ignore all "reviews" written by Eugenia Loli-Queru. She's proved time and time again that she couldn't review herself out of a paper cup.

      Too fscking right

      OSnews - for when you're interested in:

      * randomly changing distros (every *day*?)
      * not bothering to do any googling whatsoever ('flash doesn't work out of the box! neither does java! neither does Real! - er, just like it doesn't on windows out of the box)
      * not caring at all about 'free' - ('why don't Red
  • by ehack (115197) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:16AM (#9049370) Journal
    Linux vendors need to understand that they are not selling the possibility that you can recompile and fix an issue, they are selling the fact that THEY have recompiled and fixed the issue for you.

    Geeks are using a lot of Powerbooks because the hardware is supported seamlessly for sleep, DVD play etc: Apple has recompiled bsd for you :)
  • redhat review (Score:2, Informative)

    by next1 (742094)
    cooincidentally i was reading another review [linuxplanet.com] (from their site) of the same laptop recently, but this one is with redhat. interesting comparisson.

    personally i am actually interested in these LC laptops because for me (in australia) they are so cheap. anyone with personal experience of shipping/delivery costs/times overseas, problems etc, would be appreciated.
  • They act as if this laptop is any worse than any other when it comes to Wi-Fi. It's just the way Linux is... Wireless is such a PITA in Linux - missing simple features such as the ability to scan for SSID's that are broadcasting.

  • RANTMODE on

    I've looked high and low for computers, available to John Doe-home-consumer, that had Linux preinstalled. Oh, they exist, there are places where you can buy laptops with Linux preinstalled. But, look at them, either they are from companies that refuse to sell home systems with Linux preinstalled like IBM or Dell, or they are a generic non-branded factory laptop sold by seemingly an upstart.

    The later is no biggy, truthfully we have to start from some where, and frankly many of the IBM/Dell lin
    • It seems the only real route at present is linux compatability lists [linux-laptop.net], coupled with Windows Refunds [windowsrefund.net]

      Its a shame, but it seems the big manufacturers just dont see the market for linux laptops.

      Plus only recently has it been decreed that MS can no longer hold things back from manufacturers who ship bare systems.
    • There's no market for it. Why do you expect Dell to spend many thousands of dollars of R&D to produce, nice, high-end Linux machines, of which they may sell a handful?
      A. Most people don't want Linux for a workstation. That's a fact.
      B. Those few people who do are generally too cheap to pay for a nice, pre-configured system, and would rather buy a piece of shit and download Linux themselves and spend their own time wrestling with it.

      It has nothing to do with MS other than the fact is that people want W
  • to work with Linux, unless you use the wrong distro, or the wrong version, or use unsupported peripherals or...
  • --if I had just bought a *brand new* expensive laptop (well, to me anything brand new is expensive, heh) and the buttons on the desktop didn't work I'd be seriously annoyed. I know if I was SELLING them I just wouldn't do it, would keep tweaking until they did. "The internet" is sorta the most important default application stuff that should "just work" when you get any new machine for most people and uses. And what's the issue with WiFi anyway, the companies who make these things are jerks when it comes to
  • Has anyone tried running Yellow Dog Linux [yellowdoglinux.com] on a PowerBook?

    I would be interested in hearing the performance and ease of use. I am particularly interested in the performance of the PowerPC chip and the integration of the hardware with the OS. In fact I would be interested in purchasing a Mac and wiping the OSX to run native Linux - can someone enlighten me on OSX; is it like running Cygwin [cygwin.com] on a PC?

    The main reason towards my shift on the MAC hardware [apple.com] is the PowerPC chip, the keyboard lights discussed rece [slashdot.org]
    • Yellow Dog Linux compatibility with Apple laptops highly highly depends on which laptop you have. I had Yellow Dog on my 12" Powerbook, and it just wasn't usable. Why? Sleep didn't work, Airport Extreme didn't work, brightness control didn't work. You can get a list of what features work on what Apple powerbooks here [yellowdoglinux.com].

      If the Yellow Dog linux guys can't get these features working on some of the Powerbooks, I doubt anyone can ( and they do this for a living for shits sake)

      If you are going to spend money
  • Basically acoording to her little bio she has no clue how to review hardware. Dont blame her for being clueless, blame the moron who hired her.

    Name: Eugenia Loli-Queru
    Title: Editor in Chief
    Email: eugeniaosnewscom
    Personal website: http://www.eugenia.co.uk/
    Birthday: 1973
    Current residence: Bay Area, CA, USA

    Short biography: I served for 2 years at BeNews, serving the BeOS and its community (this is all past now, but still full of great memories), and before that I was contributing as a news editor fo
  • I am all for buying hardware where the vendor guarantees Linux compatibility. I think the main reason people claim that Windows is "easier to maintain" these days is because they compare laptops with Windows pre-installed to oddball laptops on which Linux needs to be installed by hand.

    But there are plenty of laptops that run Linux well, and there are plenty of companies that pre-install those laptops with Linux (your choice of distribution) and guarantee that it works. So, I wouldn't really put too much
  • by Spoing (152917) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @09:28AM (#9050440) Homepage
    this is a good review of a no-compromises Linux laptop [linuxjournal.com].

    OK, I fibbed. It's a Linux notebook.

    Summary: Very small portable computer with a regular keyboard. The base system is built on a name-brand hardware (Sharp) with a customized Linux distribution on it. The customizations take care of the specific hardware; just like Dell, IBM, Compaq/HP, Sony, and -- well -- Sharp do for the customized versions of Windows they ship. Includes support, and yes you can update the packages -- just don't expect support for packages they don't provide.

    The company selling this one has other name-brand hardware that fit other categories of notebook/laptops. [emperorlinux.com]

    Element computer [elementcomputer.com] also has a good selection of hardware customized for Linux. Not rebranded IBM/Sony/Sharp/... though you can get a notepad laptop of you want -- ready to go -- and it looks like good stuff. They do not sell Windows, so you won't be paying Microsoft like Emperorlinux had to (using top-notch hardware with Windows already bundled on it).

  • by Anonymous Coward
    ... and again, not being a member of slashdot means that like three people will read this, but whatever.

    First of all, it's not Linux certified, it's "Linuxcertified" - a brand name (though even they miff the spacing sometimes, like on the install DVD they give you: "Linux" is written to the right and "Certified" going down).

    Secondly, I was real surprised as I found out that the little silver buttons on the front do nothing, and I felt the same way about suspend.

    The "function" keys in general don't seem
  • It turns out I own one of these puppies. Let me be the first one to say : I absolutely love it.

    I bought a dual-boot system from LinuxCertified in middle of February. I had thought that I would be using both parts of my system half the time. But, I am completely dependent on Linux now. I have not even booted Windows since early April. I am looking into shrinking that part of the system down now ;)

    In any case coming back to the point. Here are my observations about this laptop:

    I ordered with Fedora

For every bloke who makes his mark, there's half a dozen waiting to rub it out. -- Andy Capp

Working...