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Laptop for Linux - what to go with?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Well, awile ago I started a thread about what to look for in a Laptop, specifically IGP-wise, here

So, with that in mind, I picked out the HP dv4z since with information provided by people on my thread I saw that the HD3200 was better than any of the Intel IGPs and the Nvidia IGPs offered in notebooks around this price point.

Now I realize, the only game I'm going to be playing on this Laptop, Guild Wars, works almost flawlessly under Wine, according to WineHQ, and I've had it running under Linux before, though it ran slow, probably due to the hardware I was using.
Pentium 4
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Geforce 6200LE (AGP)
Arch Linux w/ Xfce4
The game seemed to run fine, but very, very slow, I'm sure with a new Laptop that has more ram and a dual core cpu it would fare better.


So, I started looking for reviews to see if the HD3200 would work okay in Linux, since I don't know much about IGPs, as I've hated them for as long as I can remember and always buy motherboards without them.

Asking a friend for help, he linked me directly to page 5 or so of this article, and it confused me. It is a comparison of the 4500hd (on desktops, though.) with some ATI cards, and I was shocked until I finally noticed at the end that they were not using the video drivers for the cards, but just MESA.

I continued searching, but did not find much good info.

Also, I have read that HP uses broadcom wireless, thought I cannot seem to find any info on exactly what wireless card the dv4z uses. If it is in fact broadcom, do they work okay under Linux?

Going to be using Fedora 10, by the way.




tl;dr: Do you think the dv4z would be an okay Laptop for running Linux?

Edit: Uh-oh.
Edited by Redmist - 12/19/08 at 5:45pm
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post #2 of 13
Aside from the very good probability of having to do strange things to get the wireless working (and I can help with that) it should be fine for Linux.

The HD 3200 should be fine also, once you get the ATI drivers installed (on Fedora 10 that'll have to be manually since they haven't been packaged yet).

Personally if I'm buying a laptop for Linux, I'll usually get a Dell, though they don't start offering non-Intel graphics until you start paying them quite a bit more money. Even so the GMA X3100 isn't too bad. It should handle Guild Wars, anyway.
Edited by error10 - 12/19/08 at 5:51pm
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post #3 of 13
Run backtrack3 for wifi problems to go away
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
Aside from the very good probability of having to do strange things to get the wireless working (and I can help with that) it should be fine for Linux.

The HD 3200 should be fine also, once you get the ATI drivers installed (on Fedora 10 that'll have to be manually since they haven't been packaged yet).

Personally if I'm buying a laptop for Linux, I'll usually get a Dell, though they don't start offering non-Intel graphics until you start paying them quite a bit more money. Even so the GMA X3100 isn't too bad. It should handle Guild Wars, anyway.
Well, I've actually heard really bad things about X3100 and guild wars.
See here


Also, looks like HD3200 might be a no go, unless his problems are specific to his motherboard and chipset...
http://forums.fedoraforum.org/showthread.php?t=205728

As usual, thanks for all the help error10, you're a life saver.
Edited by Redmist - 12/19/08 at 6:06pm
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post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redmist View Post
Well, I've actually heard really bad things about X3100 and guild wars.
See here


Also, looks like HD3200 might be a no go, unless his problems are specific to his motherboard and chipset...
http://forums.fedoraforum.org/showthread.php?t=205728

As usual, thanks for all the help error10, you're a life saver.
I can't read that site; it seems to be down or something. But a quick search reveals that the X3100 should handle Guild Wars fine, if at low FPS. (One guy said 30fps on low, 20fps on mid.)

It's probably because of problems like that that the ATI fglrx driver hasn't been released on Fedora 10 yet. If you're stuck on ATI, you might want to go with Fedora 9 or Ubuntu instead.
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post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
I can't read that site; it seems to be down or something. But a quick search reveals that the X3100 should handle Guild Wars fine, if at low FPS. (One guy said 30fps on low, 20fps on mid.)

It's probably because of problems like that that the ATI fglrx driver hasn't been released on Fedora 10 yet. If you're stuck on ATI, you might want to go with Fedora 9 or Ubuntu instead.
Well, in a nutshell Intel IGPs have problems with some areas of the newer expansion packs of Guild Wars, and to get around this you had to use a program called 3D-analyze with these settings checked off. I know because I have had to help friends do this (not specifically with x3100, but with other Intel IGPs) to be able to come to certain areas of the game. I'm not sure if this would happen under Linux or not, but I don't want to take a chance, because if it happens under Linux and I am not able to use that program, I would be forced to use Windows

My other option is a Compaq CQ50Z

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post #7 of 13
Well, if you're going to use Guild Wars in Wine, you need to skip all that and go here instead.

I'd certainly take the nvidia 8200 any day over the Intel graphics, and maybe even over the ATI, since AMD seems to have a serious problem with writing drivers.
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post #8 of 13
I am currently typing on my laptop with ubuntu. I have an express-200 ati IGP and my wifi card, a d-link PC card bus card, was up and running right from the start, I can test if the internal works natively, and will post back.

Compiz Fuzion runs beautifully on even this onboard video, I cannot attest to game performance, as this IGP struggles with even the source engine (which may have more to do with the single core 1.5 Ghz celeron running all of it)
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post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
Well, if you're going to use Guild Wars in Wine, you need to skip all that and go here instead.

I'd certainly take the nvidia 8200 any day over the Intel graphics, and maybe even over the ATI, since AMD seems to have a serious problem with writing drivers.
Okay, so I guess I don't have to worry about those problems under Wine since I'm guessing if it works being run through that 3D-Analyzer program, it is is driver / software problem and not a hardware one?

I'm thinking I'll go for the Compaq, as the HP doesn't really have much over it, especially considering ATI's problems with Fedora 10. Still haven't gotten ATI drivers on my desktop going. I did want the HP because of the 14.1" screen, but I can deal with a 15.4", especially since the Compaq is a lot cheaper.

I assume Nvidia drivers are much easier to install, and are probably in RPM fusion?
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post #10 of 13
Yep the nvidia drivers are in RPM Fusion and work fine. (I personally had to install mine manually so I could do GPU2 folding in Wine. That laptop won't be able to GPU fold so you don't need to worry about it.) Just follow along in my Linux Guides below.
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