Best Laptop to buy for Freebsd Without OS?

Chad Perrin perrin at
Fri Feb 18 23:54:46 UTC 2011

On Fri, Feb 18, 2011 at 08:41:09AM -0600, Jorge Biquez wrote:
> I guess my best bet is top have a used one. Is not that it "has" to 
> be new but I wanted to invest in something new that last some years, 
> my last lap has 7 years but it is short on memory and won't accept more.
> I will use ebay I guess for used equipment and ask my friend to bring 
> it if possible. If you have good suggestions for places to buy used 
> equipment please let me know (on ebay I has bought in the past 
> equipment that was dead already or that has problems immediately 
> later). Of course sometimes I have bought very good equipment also.

In my experience, ThinkPads are among the highest quality laptops on the
market.  I keep an eye out for notable drops in quality, in case things
change, but so far they are still easily the best new laptops for general
use, where their configurations are suitable to one's needs (as opposed
to cases where a Toughbook might be more appropriate, for instance).
They have some of the best keyboards for touch-typing on the market, too,
even including high-quality keyboard peripherals for desktop systems.

You could try getting in touch with someone at Lenovo about ordering a
laptop with no MS Windows license.  I seem to recall hearing that's an
option, or at least was an option at one time, but I have not really
investigated it.  You can also check Lenovo's "outlet" for prebuilt
ThinkPads that suit your needs, put together for someone else's order
that got canceled; they discount these laptops, even though they have
never even been shipped to a customer.  They also have laptops that were
shipped and returned unopened, returned opened, and refurbished, for
varying levels of discount and newness.  Of course, the "outlet"
ThinkPads come with MS Windows, but you at least get a discount greater
than the markup for the Windows license that way.  Be aware that the
"outlet" sales are more prone to errors, though, as my girlfriend
discovered when she bought an unshipped, prebuilt ThinkPad a couple years
ago that had a license sticker and an installed MS Windows version that
did not match.  She just wanted to run something Unix-like on it, so it
was not a big problem, but we found the mistake somewhat interesting.

. . . and, of course, be aware that if you get a laptop with Intel HD
Graphics, you'll be stuck with the vesa driver at 1024x768 on FreeBSD at
least until Konstantin's work fixes the problem with the Intel drivers.
Be careful about the hardware in your laptop, whatever brand you get, so
you'll be sure to get the best FreeBSD user experience reasonably

Chad Perrin [ original content licensed OWL: ]
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