FreeBSD on a laptop

Adrian Wontroba aw1 at
Thu May 26 02:25:17 BST 2005

On Wed, May 25, 2005 at 12:47:02PM +0100, John North wrote:
>    Does FreeBSD work at all on laptops? I'm thinking of getting the
>    Evesham Voyager C510 (see link) and will happily ditch
>    Windows if FreeBSD will run it.  From browsing Linux and BSD sites I
>    get the impression that laptops are too highly optimised to work
>    under Windows to stand much chance of working well with anything else.

"more highly optimised" => "kludged down to a price"?

FreeBSD has worked adequately well on the two now very old notebooks
I've run it on.  The first (a Toshiba Portege) was stolen.  The second
(a Fujitsu Lifebook) is till in regular productive use.  I did double
the memory and *10 the disk space on the later.

Problem areas tend to be:

o Suspend / resume - may not work at all, but that is liveable with.

o cardbus / pccards.  Read the specs.  So many devices where the bits
  change but the name and model number remain the same.

o Getting X to work can be a struggle.

o CD / DVD drives (but R5 has improved that a lot).

o Dual Boot.  So ditch Windows.

Booting the candidate machine off an installation CD then writing down
all the peripheral information output by the kernel as it starts up for
later close comparison with the hardware notes is a good start.  If it
gets as far as running sysinstall, say "excellent" and stop, unless you
want to attempt conversion of the machine to the light side.

That Google doesn't cough up anything is a bit disconcerting.  You might
have a smoother ride with something from a more mainstream supplier.

Adrian Wontroba

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