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timzak
May 14th, 2009, 08:14 PM
Hi all,

I'm in the market for an inexpensive laptop that I plan on installing Ubuntu on. I will wipe Windows from whatever I get, so that's not a concern. Seems that Dell's Ubuntu line is a little pricier than I expected. My pricing requirement is $450 or less, and I cannot use a netbook. Needs to be a full sized laptop. I've found a Toshiba here:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834114611

Can I do any better, or should I snatch this one up? I don't need a webcam. I've been getting along with a Pentium III 650 Mhz Dell laptop with 384 MB of ram, so my expectations are pretty reasonable. Will be used for email, web browsing, OpenOffice, Picasa. Nothing too fancy.

mamamia88
May 14th, 2009, 08:19 PM
whatever you do don't buy hp just my 2 cents. i've had to send it in twice so far. if you live in the US wait until sunday they always have at least one good laptop on sale for pretty cheap in the Sunday ads

crl0901
May 14th, 2009, 08:19 PM
It's been my experience that Toshiba makes some pretty sketchy laptops. How about this Lenovo? Practically the same specs as the one you posted.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834146555

timzak
May 14th, 2009, 08:51 PM
Thanks for the link on the Lenovo. It does look very similar. No free shipping, so the net cost is about the same. The only thing I'm leery of is because it's new, there's only one review for it. The Toshiba has 160 reviews with a very high (4/5) average rating. Anyone else with experience with Toshiba or Lenovo?

Any other suggestions?

Anis
May 14th, 2009, 08:55 PM
I have been using IBM Thinkpad laptops for years and never felt the need to switch to anything else. Before the Lenovo takeover happened IBM's last model was the T43. They are built like tanks and very reliable. For the type of work that you want out of it they are perfect. I bought one a couple of months back refurbished for $300 bucks and updated the ram to Corsair value select 2 GB (1 GB x 2) from Amazon for about $33 . This thing works like a charm. This is by the way my 4th IBM thinkpad and my first refurbished one. It came in a box stating IBM certified refurbished product, with a brand new battery and looking almost like new.

If you think this is something you may feel comfortable with go ahead and get one before they sellout. I think the lowest price currently is about 10 % higher than what I paid two months back. The only place I think it is available is overstock.com: Here is the link

IBM T43 (Refurbished) @ overstock dot com (http://www.overstock.com/Electronics/IBM-Thinkpad-T43-1871fu1-WiFi-XP-Pro-Refurbished/3850185/product.html?sec_iid=33969)

You have no reason to trust me as you do not know me, but do some research on this one before you commit yourself to anything else. If you need more information about this particular laptop post it here and will oblige.

the.scarecrow
May 14th, 2009, 09:02 PM
Hi timzak

I recently bought a second hand Dell Latitude D600 Laptop P4, 1.6Mhz, 1GB RAM and 160GB HD for 210 (approx $300) from a second hand dealer.

It included Win XP Pro and I'm duel booting with Jaunty. It works as far as I can see 100% including Compiz although I don't use it for that or for games.

I find this set-up and Laptop perfect and I didn't want a newer machine with Vista on it. Its got an ATI Radion 9000 graphics card that seems to work fine using the Open Source drivers (its no longer supported by AMD) for example the latest version of Google Earth works perfectly in Jaunty on this machine.

Its built as a business machine and although the outside is a bit battered, its got the feel of a machine built to last even when it gets knocked around a bit. It keeps cool and the fans don't run very often so you might think about this as an option.

timzak
May 15th, 2009, 12:28 AM
What about the Compaq CQ60-215DX at Best Buy. For $430 you get a dual core AMD cpu, 250GB hdd, Nvidia 8200M G graphics, a separate numpad, scroll thingy to the right of the touchpad. Seems like a great deal, anyone have experience with this one?

Tipped OuT
May 15th, 2009, 12:39 AM
whatever you do don't buy hp just my 2 cents. i've had to send it in twice so far. if you live in the US wait until sunday they always have at least one good laptop on sale for pretty cheap in the Sunday ads
What!? HP has like the most nicest laptops ever! So glossy and clean, with built-in web cam and...aaaahh.. :)

JoshuaRL
May 15th, 2009, 12:56 AM
+1 for HP. I have a Compaq CQ50 and it worked with Intrepid and Jaunty right out of the box. Hardware Drivers saw both the Nvidia 8200M and the Broadcom 43xx wireless and they work great. Even the little wifi button works like it should to disconnect/connect, and the LED lights for it work too. I'd suggest the newer version of mine, as it has a little bigger screen and a full 10-key keyboard. But don't use Best Buy. You're usually gonna pay at least a $50 premium to use them, and their in store support is usually stupid bad.

Go direct:

http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopping/computer_can_series.do?storeName=computer_store&category=notebooks&a1=From+price&v1=Under+%24500&series_name=CQ60Z_series

tbroderick
May 15th, 2009, 01:01 AM
Seems that Dell's Ubuntu line is a little pricier than I expected. My pricing requirement is $450 or less, and I cannot use a netbook. Needs to be a full sized laptop. I've found a Toshiba here:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834114611


Dell's Inspiron 15n seems like a much better deal if you don't need Windows. It starts at $349 for a Celeron CPU, 160 GB HDD, 2 GB RAM, X4500HD. An upgrade to a Pentium CPU is $25 or go Core2Duo for $75. Plus I'd rather have the Dell's 1366x768 display resolution over the Toshiba's 1280x800.

Vostrocity
May 15th, 2009, 01:04 AM
Here's my two cents. Don't listen to people who say "never buy this brand" just because they had a bad experience with one product. The brand has little to do with it. The one model may have been poorly designed. Or maybe even the one unit was defective. If you Google around, you can find hundreds of people complaning about every brand of computer. No brand is perfect.


Now for some recommendations. Unfortunately, for $450 you will only get a computer around the same level has what you originally posted. That means a cheap dual core (Intel Pentium D or AMD Athlon as opposed to Intel Core 2 Duo and AMD Turion), 2 or 3GB RAM, 250GB or less hard drive, and integrated graphics. So basically it's just up the design and small features. Between the Lenovo and Tosh, I would definitely choose the Toshiba as it's a bit higher quality. Also look at the Dell Inspiron 15 (http://www.techbargains.com/news_displayItem.cfm/163518), which has the same specs as the Lenovo and Tosh but looks a bit slicker imo. And I personally favor Dells. :)



What about the Compaq CQ60-215DX at Best Buy. For $430 you get a dual core AMD cpu, 250GB hdd, Nvidia 8200M G graphics, a separate numpad, scroll thingy to the right of the touchpad. Seems like a great deal, anyone have experience with this one?
It's a better design than most, but the specs aren't much better. The CPU is equal the Pentium Ds, the HDD is a bit bigger, the 8200m G is actually worse than the new Intel X4500.


So basically, you have the Toshiba, Dell, and Compaq (until someone finds something else). Specs are equal so just choose the one you like better. Sorry that was a long post.. :D

timzak
May 15th, 2009, 01:05 AM
I just configured the same specs on HP's store from the link you provided and the cost came up $125 higher! Best Buy's price is $430, HP direct cost was $555. Does that scroll thing next to the touchpad work in Ubuntu for you?


+1 for HP. I have a Compaq CQ50 and it worked with Intrepid and Jaunty right out of the box. Hardware Drivers saw both the Nvidia 8200M and the Broadcom 43xx wireless and they work great. Even the little wifi button works like it should to disconnect/connect, and the LED lights for it work too. I'd suggest the newer version of mine, as it has a little bigger screen and a full 10-key keyboard. But don't use Best Buy. You're usually gonna pay at least a $50 premium to use them, and their in store support is usually stupid bad.

Go direct:

http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopping/computer_can_series.do?storeName=computer_store&category=notebooks&a1=From+price&v1=Under+%24500&series_name=CQ60Z_series

Vostrocity
May 15th, 2009, 01:06 AM
Dell's Inspiron 15n seems like a much better deal if you don't need Windows. It starts at $349 for a Celeron CPU, 160 GB HDD, 2 GB RAM, X4500HD. An upgrade to a Pentium CPU is $25 or go Core2Duo for $75. Plus I'd rather have the Dell's 1366x768 display resolution over the Toshiba's 1280x800.

You beat me to it. :)
And yeah, you shouldn't even look at Dell's preloaded Ubuntu computers. They're a ripoff considering you can get an equivalent Windows one for cheaper and load it yourself.

timzak
May 15th, 2009, 01:08 AM
Thanks for the long post, I need all the info I can get! :-) I didn't realize the Intel graphics were faster than nvidia? I've heard there's been some serious regressions in the Intel graphics in Jaunty. I've also heard nvidia is the least problematic for compiz. What's your take on all that?

Thanks again for your comments.


Here's my two cents. Don't listen to people who say "never buy this brand" just because they had a bad experience with one product. The brand has little to do with it. The one model may have been poorly designed. Or maybe even the one unit was defective. If you Google around, you can find hundreds of people complaning about every brand of computer. No brand is perfect.


Now for some recommendations. Unfortunately, for $450 you will only get a computer around the same level has what you originally posted. That means a cheap dual core (Intel Pentium D or AMD Athlon as opposed to Intel Core 2 Duo and AMD Turion), 2 or 3GB RAM, 250GB or less hard drive, and integrated graphics. So basically it's just up the design and small features. Between the Lenovo and Tosh, I would definitely choose the Toshiba as it's a bit higher quality. Also look at the Dell Inspiron 15 (http://www.techbargains.com/news_displayItem.cfm/163518), which has the same specs as the Lenovo and Tosh but looks a bit slicker imo. And I personally favor Dells. :)



It's a better design than most, but the specs aren't much better. The CPU is equal the Pentium Ds, the HDD is a bit bigger, the 8200m G is actually worse than the new Intel X4500.


So basically, you have the Toshiba, Dell, and Compaq (until someone finds something else). Specs are equal so just choose the one you like better. Sorry that was a long post.. :D

xxxfresca
May 15th, 2009, 01:16 AM
What!? HP has like the most nicest laptops ever! So glossy and clean, with built-in web cam and...aaaahh.. :)
I have to agree with Tipped OuT. My brother, sister, and friend all have a HP laptop and none of them have had a problem. I have also owned a HP desktop and my dad is currently using one. I think HP is a safe choice.

Vostrocity
May 15th, 2009, 01:29 AM
Thanks for the long post, I need all the info I can get! :-) I didn't realize the Intel graphics were faster than nvidia? I've heard there's been some serious regressions in the Intel graphics in Jaunty. I've also heard nvidia is the least problematic for compiz. What's your take on all that?

Thanks again for your comments.

In general, nVidia is faster than Intel. But the 8200 is from the previous generation, while the X4500 just came out recently. But then I kinda forgot the issue of Linux compatiblity, where nVidia is better. Here's the Sticky (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1130582) about the Intel graphics in Jaunty issues. It would be best if you can find a 9-series nVidia card so that you don't have to compromise on performance, but I don't know if you'll find it under $450. If you're not doing much graphics work though and 8-series is fine (which is what I have).

jml
May 15th, 2009, 02:30 AM
Here is a link

http://www.usanotebooks.com/index.php

to a site that sells many brands of used notebooks. Good prices, I was very satisfied with my purchase. If you are considering a ThinkPad, here is a way to get one without breaking the bank.

If your budget can afford it, this link:

http://system76.com/

is a company that specializes in selling and supporting computers preloaded with Ubuntu. I have had very good luck with the computers I have purchased from them as well. Happy hunting. ;-)

Joe

abn91c
May 15th, 2009, 02:55 AM
If you don't mind refurbished laptops go here http://www.geeks.com/search.asp?QUERY=ubuntu&FIELD=ALL&Submit=Go

JoshuaRL
May 15th, 2009, 09:09 AM
I just configured the same specs on HP's store from the link you provided and the cost came up $125 higher! Best Buy's price is $430, HP direct cost was $555. Does that scroll thing next to the touchpad work in Ubuntu for you?

Yeah, touchpad and scroll works perfectly. The only issue is that the disconnect button for the touchpad doesn't. But that's a minor issue for me so I haven't messed with it much.


Thanks for the long post, I need all the info I can get! :-) I didn't realize the Intel graphics were faster than nvidia? I've heard there's been some serious regressions in the Intel graphics in Jaunty. I've also heard nvidia is the least problematic for compiz. What's your take on all that?

Thanks again for your comments.

I've had no issues with mine. But I have heard of problems with both Intel (which according to history is amazing) and ATI have had issues with Jaunty and the newest Xorg.


In general, nVidia is faster than Intel. But the 8200 is from the previous generation, while the X4500 just came out recently. But then I kinda forgot the issue of Linux compatiblity, where nVidia is better. Here's the Sticky (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1130582) about the Intel graphics in Jaunty issues. It would be best if you can find a 9-series nVidia card so that you don't have to compromise on performance, but I don't know if you'll find it under $450. If you're not doing much graphics work though and 8-series is fine (which is what I have).

I'd agree that the 9 series is better, but from what I've seen you won't find it on anything less than about $800 and even then it's up in the air. I can't play all games on top quality, but most are pretty nice. Compiz and kwin run without glitches or issues, and Hardware Drivers makes installing the newest available driver a snap. Overall I give mine a 9.5 considering.

timzak
May 15th, 2009, 01:54 PM
Okay, I'm starting to settle on this Compaq from Best Buy. Seems like it's configured most the way I want of any of the low priced options. What I like about it that distinguishes it from the pack is the scroll thingy, separate numeric keypad and nvidia graphics (I'm not a gamer but I like compiz and don't want to mess with current Intel driver issues). The hdd size is nice too at 250GB. I do like the 1366 x 768 resolution as well.

I haven't done the research on the cpu, but I'm guessing it's a previous generation that runs hotter than current technology: AMD dual core X2 2.0Ghz. Coming from a 650Mhz Pentium 3, I don't think I'll be disappointed. ;)

The review criticisms for this laptop focus around slow performance and short battery life. Since I don't think performance will be a factor (especially running Jaunty 64-bit), the battery life is the only downside. Even there, I'll get an upgrade from my 10 year old Dell, which averages less than 2 hours due to the age of the battery.

I'm hoping most of the Ubuntu issues I've read about have been resolved by now with this model. Searching this lappy on these forums I found a number of issues with wireless and nvidia drivers. I'm hoping these have been fixed with kernel and software updates?

I really appreciate all the feedback. Thanks!

spcwingo
May 15th, 2009, 03:23 PM
A big +1 for HP. I have two HPs that run Ubuntu with only a few hiccups (nothing that I haven't found a solultion to yet). If I were in your situation I would hit up flea-bay and snatch up a good used one (a decent P4 model will do nicely).

Pasdar
May 15th, 2009, 03:49 PM
As someone already said, whatever you do... don't buy an HP. If you want the best brand that is also not too expensive buy ASUS. ASUS has 2 year warranty on the laptop and 3 years warranty on the hardware inside the laptop.

Don't choose a laptop with Intel graphics either, unless you don't mind lame graphics.

timzak
May 15th, 2009, 07:19 PM
I really appreciate all the feedback. I've checked out the used laptop links that some of you have posted. Definitely some good deals on there, but it's hard to pass up a brand new laptop with 1 year warranty, double the cpu and memory, quadruple the hard drive space, and modern 3d graphics for only $50-$100 more.

I'm enjoying the back and forth banter on HP...;) I've never used an HP laptop, but I love their printers! This Compaq I'm considering, do you HP naysayers consider it an HP?

Vostrocity
May 15th, 2009, 11:16 PM
Okay, I'm starting to settle on this Compaq from Best Buy. Seems like it's configured most the way I want of any of the low priced options. What I like about it that distinguishes it from the pack is the scroll thingy, separate numeric keypad and nvidia graphics (I'm not a gamer but I like compiz and don't want to mess with current Intel driver issues). The hdd size is nice too at 250GB. I do like the 1366 x 768 resolution as well.

I haven't done the research on the cpu, but I'm guessing it's a previous generation that runs hotter than current technology: AMD dual core X2 2.0Ghz. Coming from a 650Mhz Pentium 3, I don't think I'll be disappointed. ;)

Good luck on your purchase. I like the design of that laptop a lot. The one weird thing is that it weighs 6.5 pounds. My heavy magnesium alloy Dell only weighs 6.3 pounds. Oh well I guess weight isn't important in a 15". And the QLs are current-gen btw, just budget level. And really being current is the most important thing as your budget CPU still beats my last-gen Core 2 Duo. :o

And yes, definitely don't buy used laptops. Laptops wear a lot and the price difference isn't worth it.

Personally I give HP a +. I like both Dells and HPs, but definitely not Asusses :D. Their EEEs aren't great, and their mid-range is ugly and overpriced, so their only good computers are their luxury leather-pound ultraportables >1.5k.

swoll1980
May 15th, 2009, 11:28 PM
Walmart sells an Accer for $350. It has a dual core processor, and 3 GiB RAM

JoshuaRL
May 16th, 2009, 06:17 AM
I'm enjoying the back and forth banter on HP...;) I've never used an HP laptop, but I love their printers! This Compaq I'm considering, do you HP naysayers consider it an HP?

It's definitely an HP, just a lower priced one. That's what the Compaq brand brings, good design for cheap. And I have the same processor, but 1.9 instead of 2.0 AMD Athlon Dual. I've never had a problem with heat, but since it's an AMD it tends to run a little hotter than Intel. The only times it gave me worry were when I had a program chewing up my processor endlessly, but even then it never hit the safety limit or locked up. Just scared me a little with the warmth being emitted on my lap. But honestly, I've come to trust it. If you ever worry about it getting too hot, make sure the vents are uncovered and it will usually cool down real quick.

Overall, I love this laptop(Compaq CQ50Z). And I kinda wish I had it's older sister. I mean, 10-key is awesome. Plus, the newer one has a little larger resolution. (mine can only go to 1280x800) If you want a new budget laptop while still having something fully useful, go with that one.

Pasdar
May 16th, 2009, 11:42 AM
Anyone who has been active in the computer world for a long time knows that brands like HP release crap. The users here that advice something, advice it because they're using it themselves and have some kind of urge to convert the whole world to do everything exactly the way they're doing it. The only experience 'normal' users generally have with ASUS are the small netbooks. Netbooks are not notebooks. (PS: don't forget that ASUS is the brand that started to sell netbooks, before that it didn't exist)

HP has beautiful laptops, but soon you'll notice certain things on your laptop might stop functioning (e.g. your touch pad jumps from one place to another, it selects things for no reason at all, tv-out suddenly suddenly stops functioning, etc). Compaq is just an HP but without the design of normal HP laptops.

ASUS might not look beautiful, but if you want a a great working laptop with great worldwide service, then you buy it. If you become active in the IT work you'll see all them all using either an ASUS or a Sony. Unfortunately, sony is just too expensive.

If you want it to be cheap, work and look relatively nice... buy an Acer instead.

Warpnow
May 16th, 2009, 05:45 PM
If you become active in the IT work you'll see all them all using either an ASUS or a Sony.

I see a very consistent amount of IT workers using IBM thinkpads.

JoshuaRL
May 16th, 2009, 08:32 PM
Anyone who has been active in the computer world for a long time knows that brands like HP release crap. \

I disagree with this. In the past HP had poor quality, but in the last 5 years at least their quality has been almost on par with Apple. Except that Apple doesn't sell a laptop for $500. I only suggest HP for Linux because it has worked flawlessly for me. I honestly have NO problems, and totally suggest it to others for that reason. I'm not a zealot and make no commission off of Compaq sales. My baby is just a good laptop.

subdivision
May 16th, 2009, 08:42 PM
Acer and Asus laptops seem to be pretty nice. I have an Asus 701 that I'm very pleased with and have several friends with Acer Aspire Ones that they love.

Pasdar
May 16th, 2009, 08:51 PM
I disagree with this. In the past HP had poor quality, but in the last 5 years at least their quality has been almost on par with Apple. Except that Apple doesn't sell a laptop for $500. I only suggest HP for Linux because it has worked flawlessly for me. I honestly have NO problems, and totally suggest it to others for that reason. I'm not a zealot and make no commission off of Compaq sales. My baby is just a good laptop.
I disagree that they've become better. In fact, my wife has an HP Artist edition, and they have the same problems they had before. It looks beautiful, it feels expensive, but soon after stuff stop functioning or doesn't function like it should anymore.

It is not the "HP" that is compatible with Linux. There is no "HP hardware". Whatever brand you choose, be it Apple, ASUS, DELL, Sony or whatever, you still need to make sure your hardware is supported in Linux. In your case, you didn't check if yours was compatible, but you should be happy it is.

There is basically only one thing you need to look at these days to know whether its going to be compatible and runs well in jaunty. Make sure the videocard is a NVIDIA GeForce. Everything else should work. ATI cards also work, but the drivers are not good enough yet.

JoshuaRL
May 18th, 2009, 06:16 AM
In your case, you didn't check if yours was compatible, but you should be happy it is.

False assumption there. Whether it's a cheap desktop off of ebay, a high-end server, or a laptop I always check out the hardware to make sure it will be compatible. That's called using my dollar votes to support something I agree with. But then again, that's why I can suggest that exact laptop. I shopped around and things work perfectly. The same as I made a review on the site while that laptop was on it, I refer people to it. Because I both shopped well and have had it work out perfectly.

infinities
May 18th, 2009, 08:57 AM
What a coincidence....
I just bought that laptop today. I felt it was a bargain as well.

starcannon
May 18th, 2009, 09:01 AM
whatever you do don't buy hp just my 2 cents. i've had to send it in twice so far. if you live in the US wait until sunday they always have at least one good laptop on sale for pretty cheap in the Sunday ads
Good call, ours burnt up its gpu 3 months after the warranty expired, imagine that.

timzak
May 18th, 2009, 09:01 PM
Well, I ended up getting the Compaq from Best Buy. Boy, they sure do try and get you to buy extras there. This is the first pre-built computer I've ever purchased. I've always built my own systems, and the Dell laptop I do have was given to me because it was obsolete. First they try and sell you the laptop that's preinstalled with A/V, etc. Then they try and sell you the in store warranty. Even if they don't get you on those, now you have to pay a California recycle fee of $16.00! The $430 laptop ended up costing over $480 after tax and recycle fee. Sheesh.

Great laptop. It actually runs Vista really well. I installed 9.04 64-bit on a separate partition and set up to dual-boot. Video drivers worked out of the box and wireless worked with a bit of tinkering. I didn't have to install madwifi, but I did have to play in the Network Manager menus for a bit before it started working. Not sure why. Anyhow, so far so good. Excellent performance and ergonomics. After using the 1366x768 display for a bit, my 1440x900 desktop seems almost square, and the 4:3 monitors I use almost seem taller than they are wide. I did have to remove a panel in Ubuntu to save some pixels in the vertical plane. 768 pixels is a tad squat for me. But I love the numpad, the scroller built into the touchpad, and the performance is very nice. About the only thing I've been unhappy with is the wireless transfer rate over Samba shares. It's only going about 1.2 MB/sec. I was copying over a bunch of files and resorted to going wired, which increased transfer rates to 7+ MB/sec.

Hopefully the build quality holds on this thing. It's a lot wider than my Dell laptop, and much lighter too. The Dell looks and feels like a WWII tank in comparison. It's a great old machine, but side by side with the Compaq it's like comparing a WWII VW Beetle to a current VW Beetle.

Thanks again for all the advice. Much appreciated!

mamamia88
May 18th, 2009, 09:05 PM
i think i may have been a little harsh on hp. yes mine broke but i was just angry at the time. they fixed it hassle free even after warranty had expired for free. there was some kind of recall on it. they received it last wednesday replaced the motherboard and shipped it back to me thursday via 2 day shipping and i got it back this morning. i guess they are getting better at support

timzak
May 19th, 2009, 08:32 PM
That's good to know about HP's support. Thank you for sharing your positive experience.

Here's a list of issues I have with this laptop, in case someone else is considering it:
1) the light on the wireless button does not change color from blue to red like it does in Vista. Otherwise, no functionality issues.
2) the button that disables the touchpad does not work like it does in Vista (I'm going to test "touchfreeze" from the repos this evening to see how it works). Otherwise, it's impossible to type with any speed because the touchpad keeps moving the cursor while typing.
3) Suspend doesn't appear to work. When coming out of suspend, I never could get back to X and ended up having to manually power down as CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE is now disabled. After doing this, I had issues with wireless "breaking" due to the improper shutdown, but resolved them after booting into Vista and turning on the wireless from the button that doesn't work in Jaunty.
4) Due to the narrow 768 pixel height of the screen, some application configuration menus are offscreen, so some trickery is needed to get to the "Apply" button when changing configuration settings.
5) wireless transfers are pretty slow over Samba. It's roughly 6x faster to plug in and go wired when transferring lots of files. The actual numbers are about 7-7.5 MB/sec while wired and 1.2 MB/sec while wireless.

None of these (except maybe not being able to disable the touchpad) are potential deal breakers, but are things you should be aware of if considering this machine. If touchfreeze ends up working, I'll report back.

theGAXman
June 28th, 2009, 10:24 PM
That's good to know about HP's support. Thank you for sharing your positive experience.

Here's a list of issues I have with this laptop, in case someone else is considering it:
1) the light on the wireless button does not change color from blue to red like it does in Vista. Otherwise, no functionality issues.
2) the button that disables the touchpad does not work like it does in Vista (I'm going to test "touchfreeze" from the repos this evening to see how it works). Otherwise, it's impossible to type with any speed because the touchpad keeps moving the cursor while typing.
3) Suspend doesn't appear to work. When coming out of suspend, I never could get back to X and ended up having to manually power down as CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE is now disabled. After doing this, I had issues with wireless "breaking" due to the improper shutdown, but resolved them after booting into Vista and turning on the wireless from the button that doesn't work in Jaunty.
4) Due to the narrow 768 pixel height of the screen, some application configuration menus are offscreen, so some trickery is needed to get to the "Apply" button when changing configuration settings.
5) wireless transfers are pretty slow over Samba. It's roughly 6x faster to plug in and go wired when transferring lots of files. The actual numbers are about 7-7.5 MB/sec while wired and 1.2 MB/sec while wireless.

None of these (except maybe not being able to disable the touchpad) are potential deal breakers, but are things you should be aware of if considering this machine. If touchfreeze ends up working, I'll report back.


timzak- What are your thoughts a month and a half later? I'm looking at getting that very model. Have any other oddities arisen or have any of your original problems been fixed?
Any other thoughts about it?

Thanks,
theGAXman

timzak
June 29th, 2009, 04:00 AM
timzak- What are your thoughts a month and a half later? I'm looking at getting that very model. Have any other oddities arisen or have any of your original problems been fixed?
Any other thoughts about it?

Thanks,
theGAXman

theGAXman,

The issues are all pretty much still there. The wifi button light is not a big deal, although I've discovered that when I've experimented with trying the madwifi drivers and found they didn't work as simply as I wanted, I ended up losing wireless connectivity until I booted back into Windows and re-enabled it from there, then booted back to Ubuntu. This would only be an issue when playing with drivers and config. Once it is set up, it works all the time.

I've tried Touchfreeze and another method for disabling the touchpad while typing. While both help, it's not foolproof. I still manage to occasionally mess up while typing due to touchpad accidentally activating. It's definitely better than prior to Touchfreeze, but not perfect.

Suspend still doesn't worked. I tried disabling compiz and still have issues with X not starting upon wakeup. The laptop does appear to wake up from suspend, but I cannot get video back. I have to ctrl-alt-backspace and log back in to get video back. Not important for me, though. The system uses low power even when awake, and shutdown, restart is fast enough to not miss suspend.

Wireless speeds are still an issue when transferring over samba. Not sure why, I haven't messed with it so much, but I typically get 1-2 MB/sec over the wireless, and if I plug in to wired ethernet, it jumps to 7+ MB/sec.

I'm hoping that the next version of Ubuntu will have some kernel fixes for the wireless button/speed and the touchpad sensitivity. Otherwise it's a great laptop.

Let me know if you have any other questions. I'd be happy to answer the best I can.

Tim