[linux-elitists] Laptop that doesn't suck?

Adam Kessel adam@bostoncoop.net
Sun Jan 18 14:00:36 PST 2004

So my laptop is accumulating a dangerously high number of physical
maladies to the point where I think it might completely dissolve one of
these days.  I'm considering entering the market for a laptop again, and
I'm wondering if anyone here has done research recently that might save
some initial exploration.  

Three years ago, I decided to buy an HP OmniBook 500, mostly on the basis
of a fairly robust GNU/Linux user community for the model, which has been
quite helpful.  Still, a great number of things have never worked well,
or at all: the internal winmodem, 3D acceleration (spotty--can only get
kernel modules to build with older kernels), xvideo acceleration (always
need to use outside X drivers), power management, etc..  Not to mention
that the thing is really falling into pieces.  

I'm wondering if the scene is any better these days. Is there anyone
manufacturing laptops where you get full support out of the box with a
stock vanilla kernel/mainline XFree86 for all the video stuff, internal
modem, Ethernet, wireless, DVD-RW, USB 2.0, three button mouse, and ACPI?  

Better yet, is there a way to buy such a machine with no OS, memory, or
hard drive?  

I've looked at a few sites like linuxcertified.com, but it appears that
they're trying to sell a value-added service of pre-installed linux,
which I don't care about at all.  I'm looking for a barebones laptop
where I can transfer my RAM and HD from my OB500 and not have to deal
anymore with non-mainline kernel modules an X drivers.  

If there's a good resource already out there for this, please point me
in that direction. linux-laptop.net has a pretty good comprehensive
catalog of support on different laptop models, but there doesn't seem to
be anyway to find out where you're going to find something where
everything just *works*.
Adam Kessel

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