[kwlug-disc] Netbook+ manu. suggestions?

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Sun Mar 8 22:11:38 EDT 2009

I am thinking it's time to buy a notebook.

I will want ...
- to run Debian
- to shrink the pre-installed OS and dual boot.
- all the latest bells and whistles, but not the fastest.
- wi-fi (preferably pre-802.11n, but I probably can't have it at a 
price point I'm willing to consider), bluetooth, camera, mic, 
speakers, etc. - Including inputs, such as for headset. Video out. 
Gbps Ethernet
- dual-core (Celeron?)
- at least 1024x768 (for VNC), inevitably it will be wider, but I want 
it to be at least that big.
- DVD, probably Blu-Ray.
- expect that 2GB will be practically sufficient, for memory.
- not certain I want or need the hassle of a 64-bit OS. Presuming that 
32-bit haps aren't always 'just happy' on them.

- what other criteria haven't I thought of here?

- What are the AMD keywords I need to look for for dual-core? I don't 
know the AMD line. My experience has been, when away from my dual-core 
to a single core, I really notice the spots of hurry up and wait while 
this app opens before I can switch tasks to get on with things. e.g. 
Opening firefox or open office.

- I typically end up at Canada Computer.

I'm thinking the purpose here is to be a super PDA with a screen and 
keyboard. e.g. (1) I VNC into home where my environment is all set up. 
So if I drop the laptop, little current data is lost. VNC is the 
reason for the minimum screen res. - yes, I understand scaling. (2) 
I've an older laptop that can do all the above, but only with a 
suitcase, not so small, of cables, external devices, and etc. - such 
as playing a movie at the trailer via VLC (and external DVD, for that 
matter. <sigh>) I want to avoid the suitcase.

	I popped over to Dell the other day, and their configuration tool 
wanted a 1033 FSB to keep up with Blu-Ray. (I'm not convinced I 
couldn't get by with making an .iso of the disc before I go, and 
playing from HD.) Given a sufficiently large hard drive. I believe no 
hard drive will be too small - it's just an OS with a bit of data, and 
the current data will always be on the home / multiply rsync'ed network.

Age, let alone hearing loss, is playing a factor. The screen needs to 
be big enough at 1024 x 768 for me to, preferably, not need my 1x 
reading glasses. And when on my lap, my already perpetually stiff neck 
can't lock on me. Sound, other than tweedles, is all but irrelevant - 
I'd end up hooking up headphones, a stereo, or bluetooth headset, for 
any significant listening. And I can't hear anyways.

I like the $400 netbook price point, but recognize I won't get the 
doohickeys I want at that price point (bluetooth, camera, etc.). Dell 
has/had a netbook on for about $400. By the time I finished the 
configuration tool, I was at $1,200. I will not pay that much.

What am I heading towards? An Acer, non-Aspire?

Guidance, suggestions, aspects of "don't get sucked in by the hype of 

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