Linux laptops

prizrak

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My MacBook Pro is starting to show it's age and is possibly dying. Seeing as how I need a bigger screen (15+) at the moment the cheapest MBP option for me comes it at about 2200. That's a bit steep at this time, so I was wondering what machines would be good for Linux (been out of the PC game for a while and refuse to use Windows). Main wants would be 15"+ screen FHD or better, 8GB+ RAM (if it's upgradeable can settle for less RAM) and either an SSD or at least ability to put one in there (I could pull the SSD from my current lappy and just put it in another one if its cheaper). Performance is not at the top of priority list as I mostly deal with internet and command line work.

Another want is that it doesn't look like shit, I found more than a few laptop that I would just straight up not want to look at on daily basis.

Price is of course a factor but so is quality/longevity.
 

rickhamilton620

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My MacBook Pro is starting to show it's age and is possibly dying. Seeing as how I need a bigger screen (15+) at the moment the cheapest MBP option for me comes it at about 2200. That's a bit steep at this time, so I was wondering what machines would be good for Linux (been out of the PC game for a while and refuse to use Windows). Main wants would be 15"+ screen FHD or better, 8GB+ RAM (if it's upgradeable can settle for less RAM) and either an SSD or at least ability to put one in there (I could pull the SSD from my current lappy and just put it in another one if its cheaper). Performance is not at the top of priority list as I mostly deal with internet and command line work.

Another want is that it doesn't look like shit, I found more than a few laptop that I would just straight up not want to look at on daily basis.

Price is of course a factor but so is quality/longevity.
How about something from System76? https://system76.com/

Dell also offers linux options like the Precision 3520: http://www.dell.com/us/business/p/precision-15-3520-laptop/pd?oc=xctop3520hwus

Lenovo has certified the T560 laptop (the 20FJZ1Z2US model specifically) for Ubuntu, however it's not the latest version: https://support.lenovo.com/us/en/solutions/pd031426

I tried looking from smaller vendors but didn't come up with much as far as anything with linux preloaded. Nothing that's in a decent price range anyway.
 

prizrak

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I looked at System 76, Dell Precision needs to DIAF and their XPS offering in 15" is close enough to MBP that it makes no sense. Lenovo has been crap since IBM sold to them and look worth than hemorrhoids. I was thinking maybe the new Latitudes, while not specifically Linux certified we use them at work and most engineers install Linux on them.
Nothing that's in a decent price range anyway.
That's kind of the problem I'm running into, lower spec models tend to have shittier screens and nicer screens tend to come with higher specs making the prices too close to MBPs to really bother.

EDIT: Looks like with some fiddling this might make for a decent machine https://www.amazon.com/K501UW-AB78-15-6-inch-Full-HD-Gaming-Glacier/dp/B01DT49XN8/ref=s9u_simh_gw_i14?_encoding=UTF8&fpl=fresh&pd_rd_i=B01DT49XN8&pd_rd_r=3EJW3BET6TRQHA3PEFC1&pd_rd_w=mXI7R&pd_rd_wg=C6PEV&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=&pf_rd_r=4RCEK8639GWH3Z2SJY7R&pf_rd_t=36701&pf_rd_p=2a4fafb6-9fdc-425a-aee8-c82daa7b18ed&pf_rd_i=desktop
 
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prizrak

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Ended up ordering a Latitude 5580, was looking at Precision 5520 but that costs about as much as an MBP anyways so no point. Will post more once I get the machine but the E7440 I have at work has no issues with Linux so I am expecting the newer model to be similar. One thing that sux is that you can get a Precision machine with Ubuntu which is $100 less than Windows but not the Lat :(
 

rickhamilton620

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Ended up ordering a Latitude 5580, was looking at Precision 5520 but that costs about as much as an MBP anyways so no point. Will post more once I get the machine but the E7440 I have at work has no issues with Linux so I am expecting the newer model to be similar. One thing that sux is that you can get a Precision machine with Ubuntu which is $100 less than Windows but not the Lat :(
Nice! I'm firmly in the Lenovo camp now but I'd be interested to hear from you about how the Latitudes are these days. I loved my E6420, and still have a D630 that I need to figure out something to do with.
 

prizrak

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We have Lenovos here as part of a joint team with a client and I was left unimpressed. It doesn't help that they still look like they are from the 90s and also were much more than the comparable Dells (only because Dell has some big discounts now though)
 

prizrak

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Got the Latitude, Linux was installed on first boot :D Only issue I had was wi-fi not working until I upgraded the kernel to 4.8, otherwise about as easy as it gets. Only other thing is the logic for disabling the touchpad while typing is a little derpsy.
 

thevictor390

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I just pulled my old Atom N270 netbook out of some corner and decided that the only possible use I had for it was to mess around with Linux again. For the first time for me, it's starting to feel like an operating system I could get used to using, and I'm very impressed by the performance on this garbage hardware. Plus, everything worked out of the box. Unfortunately i386 support seems to be waning as Chrome isn't available, but I found a fork of Chromium called SlimJet which performs much better than Firefox.

Installing software still feels a bit backwards. The build in "Software" store app thing is very limited and buggy (this may be a downside of using a relatively lightweight distribution like Lubuntu). So most of my software installs consisted of researching what I want and hoping it shows up in Synaptics Package Manager when I guess the right keywords to search. Downloading .deb files can work but the GUI software installers "install button" does nothing so I am forced to use the command line, and then it doesn't seem to want to automatically resolve dependencies...
 

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what version did you install?
i also tested different versions on old hardware, and in my experience elementary OS is the best...
 

prizrak

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Yeah all your woes is not something I have encountered in Linux for the past like 5-6 years at least. You might just be running into the fact that everything is 64bit these days though I do see a lot of stuff compiled for 32
 

thevictor390

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what version did you install?
i also tested different versions on old hardware, and in my experience elementary OS is the best...
Yeah all your woes is not something I have encountered in Linux for the past like 5-6 years at least. You might just be running into the fact that everything is 64bit these days though I do see a lot of stuff compiled for 32
Lubuntu 17.04. I am not sure what exactly is wrong with the program simply called "Software" that appears to function as the primary method of installing software. It is associated with .deb files by default but when I open one and click Install, nothing happens. I can press the button again and again with no change.

dpkg is able to install .deb files but I can't seem to make it automatically attempt to resolve dependencies, making it overall very cumbersome to download software from a website. I have done it and it does work it's just more steps and command-line than I'd like.

Synaptics Package Manager is by far the easiest thing to use but it lists programs by short identifier names rather than their full names, making sifting through long lists of results cumbersome. It has an astronomically better selection than "Software" and has had nearly everything I have looked for.

It should probably be emphasized that I am running on a 1.6 GHz single-core Atom processor with 1 GB of RAM and a (physically) miniature HDD. It's a miracle that this thing boots with the latest version of anything nevermind something as full-featured as Ubuntu.
 
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RdKetchup

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On debian based systems I usually use apt-get from the command line to download and install packages. Resolves all dependencies.
 
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DanRoM

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Or as a slightly more fancy, but still terminal-based alternative to apt-get, use aptitude.
 
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