advice for buying a laptop

Polytropon freebsd at
Thu Jun 9 01:12:12 UTC 2016

On Wed, 8 Jun 2016 19:30:05 +0200, Christian Baer wrote:
> It may be that I am strange, but I actually like the older T-Series by
> IBM or Lenovo much more than most newer machines. They have great
> keyboards and the machines themselves are hard to break. They are just
> built well. [...]

I use a IBM T60p and Lenovo R61i myself - "still" great machines to
work with. Especially when you use an SSD and think about what software
you install, you get up-to-date (!) average performance out of those
things, even when they are already 5+ years old. :-)

Last year I made a Dell Latitude D630 with FreeBSD 10, and it works
better than my home Aldi PC! :-)

> I don't care about gaming performance. That's not what I need it for.
> Most of my work will include writing (probably 80% TeX, lots of emails,
> some letters). There will be some work done specifically for my sports
> club (which requires special Windows software) - and yes, I will try to
> get it to run with wine. :-) There will be some Firefoxing and some
> video watching while I am on the train. This is the basic usage profile.

Nothing the mentioned machines cannot handle.

> I will be running a dual-boot system with Windows (hopefully 7) and I
> also want to run FreeBSD. This is where you guys come in. Laptops often
> contain evil hardware which will not work too well with Linux, BSD and
> the like because of missing or broken drivers. Will this be a concern
> with the T520? Even if the work I do would be possible in theory, I do
> not plan on working through a frame buffer!

If you can, use a live system to check (start from USB or CD/DVD).
But as far as I know, all the parts of the machines I own are fully
supported, even the wireless. The only thing I really didn't care
about is the fingerprint reader as I have no use for it.

> Here is some info about the laptop:
> Do you think that this machine will work well with FreeBSD on it? Is
> there some other machine I should take a look at? While looking around,
> I noticed the T520 and liked it (because I have used it before), but I
> don't know every model out there and thus I am open to suggestions.

Looks good from that list. But it's probably a good idea to give it a
try with a test system prior to paying.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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