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Re:That's all well and good...

Posted by: Corba the Geek on March 11, 2004 03:36 PM
Hang on! The question is quite legitimate - and certainly not a spiteful critiscm.

I've got an old Fuji Life book. Works great with SuSE 8.0 on it. It has a small form factor and is quite slow so all I use it for is web/mail access via a wireless network.

Because it is old it uses APM. This works well. I can simply close the lid and it goes into suspend mode. The I press the button to have "instant on". The only thing that doesn't recover correctly is the sound card - this needs to be reinitialised by unloading the driver and reloading.

Now I also have my "work" laptop. This is a shiny new Dell Inspiron 8600. The problem here is that it uses ACPI - and this doesn't really work well at all. So I can't use the suspend (I could probably try to get it working with a newer kernel - and the various whacks for the Dell BIOS). This means that I have to shut the machine down and then restart it. Which takes an age.

So I still find myself using the little slow laptop - simply because it is so easy to use.

Nothing to do with battery life (the battery is actually useless on the fuji) - but the simple matter of having "instant on".

I think it is reasonable to run through *all* the features of the hardware - and see which works and which doesn't - even if you don't intending use that feature.

What happens when you press the suspend button or shut the lid? Just say if it works or not? What happens if you unplug the mains? Does it run down really quickly? Simply tests that don't require a lot of fiddling or testing. Just say "I did these quick tests - but as I don't use the features I've not investigated them any more thoroughly".

Here you are present a review of a "Linux Certified" notebook. This is the significant point. I want to know the extent of this certification. What does it really mean? Can I use that as a guide to purchase - will I have confidence that the certified label really means that the laptop works? The review has only skimmed over some of the issues. I still don't know what Linux certified really means - in practice - beyond the claims of the adverts on the website.

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