[CentOS] In the market for a new (old) laptop

Robert Moskowitz rgm at htt-consult.com
Wed Jun 27 00:53:28 UTC 2007

Johnny Tan wrote:
> Robert Moskowitz wrote:
>> Don't know what it will be, but I am not suppose to swap its drives 
>> out and I continue to use this HP Compaq nc4010 as my Linux workhorse.
> Robert: I'm also looking for an ultralight notebook to bring to 
> datacenters with me. The nc4010 sounds pretty good (just looked it up 
> now, had not heard of it before). What is it that you don't like about 
> it? 
I pretty much love my nc4010.  I got it May, '05.  It has the 'most 
recent' bios on it...

I have used it in plane seats that were very cramp.

Things I do not like:

The drive has to go into a drive carrier.  I could only find ONE company 
in the US selling it and it cost $50.  This way I could swap easily 
between 2 drives.  Taking off the screws from a carrier and switching 
drives, putting screws back in, is not something you want to do on an 

Battery life could be better.  With the external battery, I get 4 - 6 
hours depending on what I am doing.

Cooling is a problem (but this is common with notebooks).  I had Linux 
shut down this noon do to overheating:

Jun 26 12:19:23 nc4010 kernel: ACPI: Critical trip point
Jun 26 12:19:23 nc4010 kernel: Critical temperature reached (113 C), 
shutting down.
Jun 26 12:19:23 nc4010 kernel: Critical temperature reached (45 C), 
shutting down.
Jun 26 12:19:23 nc4010 shutdown[5636]: shutting down for system halt
Jun 26 12:19:23 nc4010 shutdown[5637]: shutting down for system halt

Ouch.  Oh, I use a piece of toe molding as a notebook 'stand'.  It 
provides just the right angle for the keyboard, allows for some airflow 
under the unit for cooling, and was CHEAP (had it in my junk wood barrel 
from a home improvement project).  Don't need it when I have the 
external battery atttached.

No CD/DVD.  OK, I lug along a USB CD/DVD for when I need one.

Only one miniPCI.  What do you want there:  802.11 or Bluetooth (thus I 
have a USB dongle for bluetooth).

No external antenna option.  Wonder how this will work with an 802.11n 
miniPCI; going to have to ask this at the 802 meeting come July....

The 2 USB connectors are so close that you can't plug a typical dongle 
in directly.  Oh and Linux reports finding 3 USB hubs, a 3 port, a 2 
port, and a 5 port.  Huh?

I have not gotten the internal SD card reader working in Linux.  
Yesterday, I saw some comments about a card reader on an IBM thinkpad 
wrt getting it working again after coming out of suspend, so maybe there 
is hope.

Have not gotten the internal Modem working.  I had tried the WinModem 
stuff, I did get some tips, I need to revisit this.

Suspend to memory does not work 'out of the box'  Don't click on the 
System>Suspend option...

I am still struggling with Suspend2.  I built a nice large swap 
partition to Hibernate to the drive to make drive swapping easier....

So it is an older box.  When I started with Linux there was not anything 
out there about putting Linux on this unit.  I need to start a page with 
what works here....

If I can find something newer and better and cheap, I will grab it.  
Otherwise, this dog hunts.

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