I am looking to buy a laptop, and need some advice. Right now I am running a Sony Vaio VGN-TX1XP – a small form-factor laptop, that has served me pretty well. That was, until a few months back. An hour before I left for the airport to the UDS, the keyboard stopped working. This resulted in me buying a stupid external keyboard and carrying it round with me. You can see the size of the laptop and its ridiculous external keyboard here:

I quite like this smaller size of laptop, I can put it in my little Ubuntu over-the-shoulder bag. But, this keyboard is doing my head in, so I am thinking of alternatives.

So, this is what I absolutely want in a laptop:

  • Small form-factor, sturdy.
  • Dual core, good amount of RAM so I can run virtual machines fine.
  • Very good battery life – I am happy to buy a fat 5-hour battery pack.
  • Decent 3D performance – a decent Intel card would be preferred so I can run the free drivers, otherwise no preference.
  • Large hard drive – at least 100GB.
  • Two USB ports, Firewire, external VGA that works with a projector. 🙂

And a few nice things, not essential, but nice:

  • Hardware buttons for volume up/down.
  • Built-in webcam.
  • Built-in mic.
  • Built-in keyboard light.
  • Built-in SD card slot.

Naturally I would want all of the hardware to be supported in Linux, specifically Ubuntu – and this includes things like the Firewire port. 🙂

I would like to get this for no more than £800 if possible.

Some of you may suggest the EEEPC, but having used it, it is not quite as powerful as I want, and the projector support will be a problem due to its strange resolution. If I could get a more powerful EEPC with a normal screen resolution, and a little bit bigger, that would be perfect. Then again, that would be my current Vaio. 🙂

Of course, if someone from a laptop vendor wants to donate me a laptop, I am not going to hold you back. 🙂

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