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View Full Version : Laptops without Windows in the UK



dark_ixion
May 12th, 2009, 10:42 PM
I've been struggling to find a decent laptop which doesn't have Windows pre-installed.

Dell have betrayed us by dropping support for Linux on all but their Mini 9 series.

HP show lines which have options of FreeDOS or Open Suse, but looking at them individually, these options mysteriously disappear. I've contacted them about this an amazingly they say they can't help. They suggested I buy an HP laptop from eBuyer as they are good with removing operating systems... but would I still be paying for Windows anyway? And their range is limited.

Novatech offer some, but they're too big, with 17-18 inch screens! Way too big! Their smaller models are under-specced, and my previous purchase from them looks pretty flimsy, plus they refused to replace the battery which died within a month.

Massoss have reduced their line down to 2 options.. the EeePC netbook (I already have an Acer Aspire One which means my lightweight highly portable needs are met), but the other laptop is still the same price it was a year ago and still too big.

Apple aren't an option as I don't want to pay for OSX either.

Why is it so difficult to buy a laptop without Windows? Microsoft have all these vendors sewn up. I just want a laptop with a free OS. Why is that so unreasonable? I really shouldn't be having this problem.

I found 1 company which seemed perfect, but unfortunately they're in America (System76).

Does anyone know where I can buy one, with or without a free OS installed, bearing in mind I would like a fairly high spec machine (like 2.6Ghz+ processor, 250Gb+ HD, 4Gb memory, and 14-15.4" screen). Even a vendor offering barebones machines might do.

oack
May 12th, 2009, 10:56 PM
A site was posted here not long ago that was right up your street, I will have a quick scan for it but other than that I know http://www.linuxemporium.co.uk/products/laptops/ http://www.ubuntushop.be/catalog/index.php?cPath=1_17_31 have some laptop offers

speedwell68
May 13th, 2009, 12:13 AM
Just buy a Windows one and install what you want on it. I have tried to get the money for my Windows licence back to no avail. Microsoft tell me to ask my OEM vendor and Acer tell me they don't do refunds on the OS as they don't actually warrant it.

Sealbhach
May 13th, 2009, 12:13 AM
There's also www.efficientpc.co.uk (http://www.efficientpc.co.uk)

Custom built Linux machines - but they do look a little bit pricey for what you get. Economies of scale I suppose.


.

gn2
May 13th, 2009, 12:17 AM
Just buy a Windows one and install what you want on it. ~

If we keep doing this, how will manufacturers realise that there's any market for Linux installed computers?

Unless we vote with our wallets, Linux installed hardware will remain hard to find.

Sealbhach
May 13th, 2009, 12:42 AM
If we keep doing this, how will manufacturers realise that there's any market for Linux installed computers.

Agreed. I think the whole point was not to chalk up another sale for Redmond.

.

baseface
May 13th, 2009, 12:58 AM
emperorlinux.com
laclinux.com

maybe they can ship to u?

Ozor Mox
May 13th, 2009, 02:30 AM
I hear you. I've been spending hours recently looking for a laptop with Ubuntu, but the choice is minimal. I might eventually have to go with a Windows laptop and wipe it. I resent paying for a Windows licence, but the fact is, if people can't find what they want with Ubuntu or another Linux, they will have to buy Windows. OEMs will then think no one wants Ubuntu, and not bother stocking them. It's just another Linux vicious cycle along with hardware and software support and market share :(

dark_ixion
May 13th, 2009, 10:19 AM
A site was posted here not long ago that was right up your street, I will have a quick scan for it but other than that I know http://www.linuxemporium.co.uk/products/laptops/ http://www.ubuntushop.be/catalog/index.php?cPath=1_17_31 have some laptop offers

I've been to Linux Emporium before and those machines are too old. And that Belgian shop don't offer a decent spec for a small-size screen.


Just buy a Windows one and install what you want on it. I have tried to get the money for my Windows licence back to no avail. Microsoft tell me to ask my OEM vendor and Acer tell me they don't do refunds on the OS as they don't actually warrant it.

That's sort of the point though. I don't want to hand money over to Microsoft, and wish to make a conscious decision to avoid paying for something I don't want.


There's also www.efficientpc.co.uk (http://www.efficientpc.co.uk)

Custom built Linux machines - but they do look a little bit pricey for what you get. Economies of scale I suppose.
.

Unfortunately those are rather too low spec.


emperorlinux.com
laclinux.com

maybe they can ship to u?

Thanks for the suggestion, but if it breaks within a week, I'd be screwed warranty-wise. Plus I'd need to source another power cable just to charge it.

I also fear that if I do actually buy a laptop with Windows on and even get a refund for removing it, it still get's chalked up as a Windows sale and Microsoft still get their money.

monsterstack
May 13th, 2009, 10:30 AM
You chaps need to look at the Linux Emporium (http://www.linuxemporium.co.uk/products/laptops/)'s laptops. [linuxemporium.co.uk] They've got quite a range of specs.

My girlfriend got an Ubuntu laptop from Dell just before they discontinued them. I was going to get one as well. The Linux Emporium helped me out a lot; answered all my questions via email and what have you.

dark_ixion
May 13th, 2009, 10:39 AM
You chaps need to look at the Linux Emporium (http://www.linuxemporium.co.uk/products/laptops/)'s laptops. [linuxemporium.co.uk] They've got quite a range of specs.

Actually, giving that a second look, one of them looks okay (Thinkpad T500.2), so could possibly be an option. Would prefer something more powerful though.

dje
May 13th, 2009, 10:47 AM
Acorn Computers (http://acorncomputers.co.uk) seem to offer their notebooks without an operating system

ashmew2
May 13th, 2009, 10:47 AM
I've been struggling to find a decent laptop which doesn't have Windows pre-installed.

Dell have betrayed us by dropping support for Linux on all but their Mini 9 series.

HP show lines which have options of FreeDOS or Open Suse, but looking at them individually, these options mysteriously disappear. I've contacted them about this an amazingly they say they can't help. They suggested I buy an HP laptop from eBuyer as they are good with removing operating systems... but would I still be paying for Windows anyway? And their range is limited.

Novatech offer some, but they're too big, with 17-18 inch screens! Way too big! Their smaller models are under-specced, and my previous purchase from them looks pretty flimsy, plus they refused to replace the battery which died within a month.

Massoss have reduced their line down to 2 options.. the EeePC netbook (I already have an Acer Aspire One which means my lightweight highly portable needs are met), but the other laptop is still the same price it was a year ago and still too big.

Apple aren't an option as I don't want to pay for OSX either.

Why is it so difficult to buy a laptop without Windows? Microsoft have all these vendors sewn up. I just want a laptop with a free OS. Why is that so unreasonable? I really shouldn't be having this problem.

I found 1 company which seemed perfect, but unfortunately they're in America (System76).

Does anyone know where I can buy one, with or without a free OS installed, bearing in mind I would like a fairly high spec machine (like 2.6Ghz+ processor, 250Gb+ HD, 4Gb memory, and 14-15.4" screen). Even a vendor offering barebones machines might do.

And in moments like these i feel so glad that im in India. If you buy a desktop with Xp/Vista/Win 7/Linux , itll cost you the same..they dont charge you for OS , not atleast in my city though...rampant piracy i tell you..

dark_ixion
May 13th, 2009, 10:50 AM
Acorn Computers (http://acorncomputers.co.uk) seem to offer their notebooks without an operating system

That looked quite promising, but then I saw that they were all under 2Ghz, so not an option unfortunately.

Rackstar
May 13th, 2009, 12:17 PM
Maybe you should go with a more local brand?

I buy my hardware from a brand nearby, I can choose to buy it with or without OS. If something goes wrong with my hardware, I only need to drive 30km and I get my laptop back the next day!

Also they are very open, when I asked if their hardware was well supported by ubuntu, they said they didn't know. But I was allowed to come and do a test install!

EDIT: unfortunally this is only a Belgian brand.

jomiolto
May 13th, 2009, 02:15 PM
Zepto (http://www.zepto.com/) also sells laptops without OS pre-installed, but their prices are rather awful when compared to other brands :( (at least the last time I checked)

dark_ixion
May 13th, 2009, 02:25 PM
Zepto (http://www.zepto.com/) also sells laptops without OS pre-installed, but their prices are rather awful when compared to other brands :( (at least the last time I checked)

Ah, I haven't seen them before. Yes, they do seem quite pricy, but it's still an option :) Thanks!

mikewhatever
May 13th, 2009, 02:36 PM
Just buy a Windows one and install what you want on it. I have tried to get the money for my Windows licence back to no avail. Microsoft tell me to ask my OEM vendor and Acer tell me they don't do refunds on the OS as they don't actually warrant it.

This is a lame suggestion. Why would one buy a useless Windows license? Just because you got one? Because money grow on trees? What's your excuse? It's enraging that people think it acceptable to buy Windows licenses just because OEMs and retailers want to sell them. Don't you have any kind of integrity?
As for getting your money back, you obviously haven't tried hard enough.
http://www.linuxjournal.com/article/7040
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12/04/dell_windows_eula_israel/

Rackstar
May 14th, 2009, 05:26 PM
I looked around and found this on System79. I just love the fact they promote Ubuntu this way! Even the dull windowskeys are gone, and replaced by ubuntu ones.

Also it has high resolution on a 15,4", which I really really like.

http://system76.com/product_info.php?cPath=28&products_id=86

EDIT: sorry didn't notice it was North-America only

speedwell68
May 14th, 2009, 09:19 PM
That's sort of the point though. I don't want to hand money over to Microsoft, and wish to make a conscious decision to avoid paying for something I don't want.

But you are happy to pay for something that you can get for free, they aren't going to install the OS for free you know. AFAIK, as long as you do not boot Windows and register it Microsoft do not chalk up a sale.

speedwell68
May 14th, 2009, 09:27 PM
This is a lame suggestion. Why would one buy a useless Windows license? Just because you got one? Because money grow on trees? What's your excuse? It's enraging that people think it acceptable to buy Windows licenses just because OEMs and retailers want to sell them. Don't you have any kind of integrity?
As for getting your money back, you obviously haven't tried hard enough.
http://www.linuxjournal.com/article/7040
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12/04/dell_windows_eula_israel/

Nice attitude. Can you find me a reasonably priced Ubuntu PC in the UK. No you can't, I could pay over the odds for a Ubuntu based machine, or I could buy a Windows machine for less money and install my OS of choice on it. I tried my best to get a refund, Microsoft's EULA tells me to go to the PC vendor and the PC vendor didn't want to know. I asked my local trading standards where I stood with I refund and they said legally Microsoft and Acer had stitched it right up with their terms and conditions so I didn't have a leg to stand on. It was beginning to cost more in phone calls than Windows is worth. Get over it.

mikewhatever
May 14th, 2009, 11:38 PM
Nice attitude. Can you find me a reasonably priced Ubuntu PC in the UK. No you can't, I could pay over the odds for a Ubuntu based machine, or I could buy a Windows machine for less money and install my OS of choice on it. I tried my best to get a refund, Microsoft's EULA tells me to go to the PC vendor and the PC vendor didn't want to know. I asked my local trading standards where I stood with I refund and they said legally Microsoft and Acer had stitched it right up with their terms and conditions so I didn't have a leg to stand on. It was beginning to cost more in phone calls than Windows is worth. Get over it.

Let me ask you, my good sir/madame, are you a self conscious consumer or are you a puppet? Life is a lot simpler and choices easier when you are on a leash, it's cheaper too, but it's your choice. There is nothing wrong with buying PCs with Windows if you need that OS, but promoting your pathetic attitude in the thread explicitly titled ...without Windows... is simply embarrassing.

speedwell68
May 15th, 2009, 01:20 AM
Let me ask you, my good sir/madame, are you a self conscious consumer or are you a puppet? Life is a lot simpler and choices easier when you are on a leash, it's cheaper too, but it's your choice. There is nothing wrong with buying PCs with Windows if you need that OS, but promoting your pathetic attitude in the thread explicitly titled ...without Windows... is simply embarrassing.

Cut the insulting, patronising holier than thou attitude and listen (or read).

It comes down to this, in the UK there are very few outlets that stock Linux based PCs, those that do exist are more often than not overpriced or of a lower specification. It comes down to personal economics, I cannot afford to buy a PC with Linux pre-installed, so I buy one that I can afford that has a Microsoft OS installed. I do not want a Microsoft OS so I choose of my own free will to install the OS of my choice, without even booting the Microsoft OS. I did not register my Microsoft OS, therefore Microsoft have not recorded a sale. I then contact Microsoft UK and enquire about a refund for that OS, they tell me that they do not offer a refund on OEM installations, as stated in their EULA and I have to go to my PC vendor for a refund as my contract exists with them, which under the UK Sale of Goods Act it does. So I contact Acer UK and they tell that they do not warrant the OS under the terms and conditions I agreed to when I bought the machine, so therefore they do not include the OS in the price, so I am not entitled to a refund as I haven't actually paid for the OS. So I contact my local governments consumer protection department, in the UK we call them 'Trading Standards' and they confirm that under the terms and conditions of Microsoft and Acer I am not legally entitled to a refund as I have not paid either company for the OS. I hope that clarifies my position for you. You'd do better if you engaged the grey matter between your ears before you posted, because you come across as a patronising fanboy.

BTW, in the last 6 months I have bought two PCs, one of them was a netbook, it had a woefully inadequate Linux distro installed by default so I changed it to the OS of my choice.