Category Archives: system76 computer

The new laptop

So I’ve had the new laptop for 2 weeks now, and I ‘m loving it.
Here’s some pics of the unveiling:
The box it came in–it was packaged nice and safe.
All the stuff that came with the laptop
All the stuff that came in the box. Powercord, etc. It included a CD for the drivers for the laptop–handy if you want to put Windows on it, but useless otherwise.
side view
Side view showing the dvd-rw/cd-rw.
The lid
The lid–note the lack of system 76 logo. I was kinda disappointed by that, because I wante people to know where I got this monster of a laptop. I emailed S76 support, and they are printing up lables of their logo, and will send me one when that’s done.
Here’s the keyboard. Very nice, and responsive. The extra buttons work, unless you screw them up, like I did. On the top, one launches browser, one launches email, one launches totem, one launches rhythmbox, and one mutes the sound. Since I can’t stand totem, or rhythmbox, and took both them off my computer, those ones don’t work anymore, and, I’d like to see something that launches the default players instead. (I’ve found out that you can actually do this yourself, using gconf, and may be that S76’s way is fine for most users.) On the left side there’s two buttons, one of which supposedly charges your battery faster, and the other lets you charge usb connected things (like personal music players) while the lpatop is powered down–now that’s a cool feature.

This is a widescreen laptop, and I’ still getting used to that, it’s actually pretty sweet. The problem with that is that the ubuntu live CD needs some extra config to get it to display a gui, since the screen dimensions aren’t picked up in xorg.conf (because the live CD doesn’t have the drivers for the chip on the Pangolin). It’s a pain, but not a real big one.

Other than the aforementioned bugs my other complaints are that they use an LVM file system with one partition (I like to partition my drive so that the /home partition is separate from the root partition, so that it’s easier/safer to reinstall/upgrade), the reason for that is to make suspend/hibernate work, but it does make repartitioning a bitch.
Also the card reader doesn’t work, but I have it from good authority that it will real soon.

Update on the new laptop

Hey, it shipped today.
It was supposed to ship out 5 days after being sent to manufacturing, but due to a surge in orders, it got delayed, and System 76 was nice enough to upgrade shipping to 2nd day express. Turns out that the big reason for the delay was that the CPU I ordered was out of stock from Intel, (this via email yesterday), so they upgraded my CPU, so that they could ship it out today. Wow,! I’d call that great service.
System specs:

Display: 15.4″ Widescreen WXGA (1280X800)
Graphics: Intel GMA X3100
Audio Output: Realtek ALC 268
Networking: 10/100/1000 (LAN), WiFi
Wireless: 802.11 abg
Expansion: Express Card
Ports: VGA, 4x USB 2.0, MIC-In, Headphone Out, FireWire 1394, S-Video
Battery: 6 Cell Lithium Ion
Battery Life: 3.5 hours
Dimensions: 14.20″ x 10.43″ x 1.74″ (WxDxH)
Weight: 5.9 lbs.
Operating System Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn) Linux
Processor: Core 2 Duo T7100 1.8 GHz 800 MHz FSB 2 MB L2
Memory: 1 GB – 2 x 512 MB DDR2 667 MHZ
Hard Drive: 80 GB 5400 RPM SATA
Optical Drive: CD-RW / DVD-RW

This baby ought to scream right along compared to my old laptop.


System 76 Pangolin

…I did it. Yes I did. I broke down and bought a new laptop. I got one preinstalled with Ubuntu Linux from System76. They get good reviews (especially for customer service), and the laptops are priced competitively. I narrowed down the choices to this one, and an IBM Thinkpad from Lenovo, and this one won out, because I could get the same options for a little less, and, (the big one) it comes preinstalled with Linux. Less messing around for me to make sure everything works. I’ve been using a Gateway laptop for the last 2.5 years, and installed Ubuntu (starting with 4.10–Warty Warthog) on it with minimal fuss. I don’t think I’ll ever buy another Gateway, since I ‘ve had nothing but trouble with the last four computers I ‘ve bought from them. The Lenovos are really nice (I just bought one for my stepdaughter), but the System 76 seemed a better fit for me at this time.
I’ll be blogging some more about this as things unfold. I’m really hoping this is closer to the Thinkpad than the Gateway in sturdiness: that’s really my biggest concern.