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URGENT - Pls help...pls recommend - laptop purchase

Discussion in 'Laptops' started by irfansmith, Aug 15, 2008.

  1. irfansmith

    irfansmith Guest

    URGENT - Pls help...pls recommend - laptop purchase

    I am in the SF Bay Area, California.

    My laptop died so I am in need of a new laptop urgently - like today
    if poss.
    I cannot wait for more than a week or so for delivery etc.
    Windows laptop preferably ( not mac)

    My main requirements are as follows:
    - as fast as poss ( I hate it when it hangs or runs slowly)
    - as lightweight as poss

    The following are the main programs I use
    - gmail, yahoo mail etc
    - MS Word or Notepad
    - MS Outlook

    Typically I have about 6 to 7 Mozilla/ Firefox pages open and MS
    Outlook and Word or Notepad open - all day - open all at once- at any
    point in time.
    So I use quite a bit of resources.

    My Budget is as follows:
    prefer around US $1000

    But could go as high as US $1300 or so

    Since I am not a techie, I would prefer a very simple plug and play
    Would like a well known branded laptop.

    I do not need features for games, graphics, entertainment etc.
    Just a fast, lightweight sturdy laptop.

    Would any one pls recommend a laptop based on the above.
    Which brand ? What model #? Approx price ? Where to buy it ?

    Thanks in advance,

    Irfan Smith
    irfansmith, Aug 15, 2008
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  2. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    I don't know what you got against Celerons? Two of my Gateways and two
    of my Asus EEE PC use them. They run cooler and have great battery life.
    And the way I use my computer, it almost never maxes out. So get a
    faster processor? Why?

    As for getting 2GB of RAM. I have my doubts if many people actually need
    that much. As I originally had 512MB on this Gateway and went up to 1GB
    later. Then I went up again to 2GB. And my memory use hardly ever goes
    past 800MB. And I saw no difference in performance between 1GB to 2GB.

    Oddly enough, 2GB caused a problem which I don't care much for either.
    As I sometimes get the following error when I try to hibernate now.

    Insufficient system resources exist to complete the API.

    Microsoft has a hotfix for this problem and I installed it. But it still
    happens. And I am seriously thinking of going back to 1GB again. One of
    my Asus EEE PC also has 2GB. That is also unnecessary IMHO. As 1GB is
    plenty there two. Those other Gateway and Asus still has 1GB in them and
    they work just fine that way.

    Gateway Celeron M 370 (1.5GHZ)
    MX6124 (laptop) w/2GB
    Windows XP Home SP2 (120GB HD)
    Intel(r) 910GML (64MB shared)
    BillW50, Aug 15, 2008
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  3. irfansmith

    Bill Guest

    Well, I'm still trying to chase my memory 'leak' here. It may well be
    relevant to the OP.
    Almost all my regularly used programs have eventually had to return from
    Vista machines to this Lenovo XP. It has 1GB memory. The programs
    constantly running include some database software, Skype, Messenger,
    Notepad, Thunderbird, another email/news program and Firefox. When I
    start the machine it uses about 700megs of memory. As I look at and
    leave open tabs on Firefox, memory usage climbs. When it reaches about
    1.4GB, the machine is so slow that I have to reboot or close all the
    Firefox windows (ie the main window and the Download window). Then we
    are back to the original usage.
    I think this may have something to do with the way Firefox handles the
    pages in the 'forward' and 'back' buttons. I often go to a website,
    follow links and then back out from them. I understand that Firefox
    keeps some of the linked pages in memory, but I could be wrong.

    Any comments would be gratefully received. If the OP uses Firefox in the
    same way, maybe he could be hit with the same problem. I haven't yet
    tried any other browsers, except for occasional dips into IE where
    faulty sites demand it.
    Bill, Aug 16, 2008
  4. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    Yes this is completely normal for Firefox. And Firefox has had this
    problem since day one. Thus why I usually don't use Firefox too long for
    anything. My favorite is Maxthon 1 (I am not a fan of Maxthon 2) that
    uses either the Gecko engine (used in FF) or the Internet Explorer
    engine (called Trident).

    It isn't all Firefox's fault though. As some web site developers are
    very bad about causing these memory leaks. And you normally won't see
    these leaks unless you are using a tabbed browser. While Maxthon is a
    tabbed browser too, it handles these leaky sites far better. But there
    are other browsers out there too that are very good if you were going to
    try something else. Or complain to the websites about how leaky their
    sites are. ;-)

    Gateway Celeron M 370 (1.5GHZ)
    MX6124 (laptop) w/2GB
    Windows XP Home SP2 (120GB HD)
    Intel(r) 910GML (64MB shared)
    BillW50, Aug 16, 2008
  5. irfansmith

    John Doue Guest

    Well, using Seamonkey would do you a lot of good. Not the same memory
    leak problems, AFAIK and I use it constantly, and it might allow you to
    get rid of Outlook.
    John Doue, Aug 16, 2008
  6. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    Nope! Still there.

    Gateway Celeron M 370 (1.5GHZ)
    MX6124 (laptop) w/2GB
    Windows XP Home SP2 (120GB HD)
    Intel(r) 910GML (64MB shared)
    BillW50, Aug 17, 2008
  7. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    Hi Frank! This is the one I used:


    This one states for SP2, but I don't know? Seems to be application
    dependent so far. I have to close Windows Media Player v10 (in the past
    before more than 1GB all I had to do is stop it before hibernating) and
    Thunderbird seems to need to be closed too. There might be other
    applications too that needs to be closed. It doesn't happen all of the
    time, but once it does hibernation is gone until you reboot.

    Gateway Celeron M 370 (1.5GHZ)
    MX6124 (laptop) w/2GB
    Windows XP Home SP2 (120GB HD)
    Intel(r) 910GML (64MB shared)
    BillW50, Aug 18, 2008
  8. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    Oddly enough, I tried it right after that post and I only had Maxthon 1
    and the Task Manager open and it happened again. I don't think it is
    either one of them as I have them always open when I hibernate. So maybe
    it is something in the system tray.
    BillW50, Aug 18, 2008
  9. irfansmith

    John Doue Guest

    I believe I am the one who suggested Seamonkey. Let me say that if it
    does not run properly on your machine (assuming you installed the latest
    version, 1.1.11), a problem is most certainly lying somewhere else. I do
    understand you do not want to spend time on this issue, but it will
    probably reappear under one form or another.

    I suggest you post your precise issue in the relevant newsgroup on

    Best regards
    John Doue, Aug 21, 2008
  10. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    It seems that millions disagree with you. As Asus believes that a low
    cost laptops running Celerons is what millions needs. And they were
    right! Asus is selling EEE PCs by the millions. I now own three of them
    myself (plus one spare motherboard). Great little machines actually.
    BillW50, Aug 24, 2008
  11. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    Not a full laptop? How do you figure? And all EEE PC *can* run Windows
    and they all come with Windows drivers if you want to install Windows
    XP. Today it is getting harder and harder to find laptops with Windows
    XP installed. Asus is one of the few companies that does. And Microsoft
    was worried that they would lose out with millions of EEE PC being sold,
    that they cut a deal with Asus and Windows XP only costs $40 per
    license. Which is one heck of a deal.
    BillW50, Aug 24, 2008
  12. irfansmith

    John Doue Guest

    Hi Bill,

    Even if I keep in mind the act you like to have spares, I wonder why you
    need three of those EEE PC (in addition to zillions others!) I will not
    fail to discover once I am back in the US next week ...

    The key in choosing a machine is determining with a reasonable degree of
    certainty one's needs. Although Barry's points are mostly valid for
    computer enthusiasts, they fail to take into account the fact that lots
    of people could not care less about anything other than browsing,
    emails, and a few games, and absolutely do not want in a computer
    anything else than a machine which does reliably and simply what they
    want. From what I read, EEE PCs seem to fit their needs, and the
    corresponding market is probably vastly underestimated, especially in
    less developed countries.

    I just wish someone had had the genius to recognize the same need in
    terms of OS. MS has clearly failed to understand this need. Linux has
    kept us hoping for decades ... If someone had, those machines we are
    using today which gobble a huge amount of energy and resources before
    they have accomplished anything would be dinosaurs.

    John Doue, Aug 24, 2008
  13. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    In John Doue typed on Sun, 24 Aug 2008 19:42:09 GMT:
    Hi John! Well a lot of people believe they need a lot of memory and lots of
    CPU power. I believe *most* people doesn't need as much as they think they
    do. And most of the computers I see which are really slow, it is usually do
    to malware and/or tons of software starting up when booted. And if unless
    you like that sort of stuff running on your computer, you don't need a super

    Remember, I want all of my computers to last forever. Although buying
    expensive computers isn't really a good buy at all IMHO. The cheaper the
    better as long as they will last is a very good buy IMHO. Hardware is always
    getting better and better all of the time and spending lots now is never a
    good buy. But buying the cheapest you can get by with for now and knowing
    that you will buy cheap and often is the best way to go. The difference
    between Barry and I, is he thinks *most* needs more than I think they do.

    Throughout the history of computers, hardware always had to play catch up
    with software. Although for the first time in history, software is in a bit
    of trouble. As 64-bit and Vista is having compatibility problems and yet
    hardware is still moving forward.

    Asus in their wisdom saw a need for low cost and low end hardware that has
    WiFi built in with support up to 2GB of RAM. And they made it light and
    rugged. You can hold it in one hand and use the touchpad with the other just
    like a PDA. Although you don't need a table, lap or anything. Far better
    than any PDA I ever used. Yet it will run the same applications that my
    desktops and laptops can. Just amazing!

    Now I believe Microsoft has made a lot of mistakes in the past and now.
    Although I don't follow you when you say "I just wish someone had had the
    genius to recognize the same need in terms of OS." As I have seen many OS
    come and go in my time and MS has done the best out of all of them. That is
    why they are still around. Now they really blew it with Bob, ME, and now
    Vista IMHO. But the best OS they ever developed was Windows XP (I didn't
    switch over to XP until 2006). It came out in 2002 and I think it will be
    around still in 2012. I am not sure how they are going to top that one

    As far as Linux, I totally agree with you. But this is the best time for
    Linux really. As hardware is doing a great job of keeping up with software.
    And Linux has the greatest chance in history to take over the MS market
    place. Although MS does a great job when they might become the underdog. And
    I have no doubt when the going gets tough, MS can pull it off. They have in
    the past and I think they will continue to do so.

    Why three EEE PCs? LOL well the deals are getting better and can get better
    deals and upgrade for far less money than I originally spent. Remember buy
    cheap and often. :)
    BillW50, Aug 24, 2008
  14. irfansmith

    me Guest


    I even wonder if the eePC can be used for other "out of
    box" things such as media server for big screen TV in
    front room?

    Dies the eePC have enough ports to hook up to big LCD
    TV and strong enough wifi to "pull" video and audio
    files off main desktop PC in other room?
    me, Aug 25, 2008
  15. irfansmith

    me Guest

    Bill I agree with everything you say in your post!

    People really don't NEED as much hardware as they

    Instead it better to use fast, small, efficient "code"
    in my opinion

    However, I'm guilty of buying more PC as well. <sigh>

    Looking back I really wish id bought an eePC rather
    than this nice Thinkpad I have. Don't get me wrong,
    Think pad is nice.... BUT smaller is better when it
    comes to carrying convenience and even this 14" laptop
    is like hauling a brick around1
    me, Aug 25, 2008
  16. irfansmith

    John Doue Guest

    Looks like that Bill makes up in quantity what he does not buy in top
    performance equipment :=).

    Then, if you have regrets, give me your TP, I'll buy you an EE PC! I do
    see your point, especially during my long-haul flights and while going
    thru security check points. However, once I get to my destination, I
    have no regrets having lugged along my R51 (15.1 display) since I
    usually spend most of time working on it while away.

    I fully agree with your statement about people's need for hardware. But
    the same goes for cars (how long did it take for people to realize how
    stupid, wasteful and expensive it was to buy huge moving blocks like
    SUV's?), kitchen equipment, TV and the list goes on.

    John Doue, Aug 25, 2008
  17. irfansmith

    PeteD Guest

    Try playing a CD/DVD, that is also why those stupid MAC air things are
    useless as well if you need to do anything other than the basics..
    PeteD, Aug 25, 2008
  18. irfansmith

    PeteD Guest

    Firefox 3.0 has apparently fixed the memory leaks, we use Seamony at work
    and I see liitle difference in performance.
    PeteD, Aug 25, 2008
  19. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    In typed on Sun, 24 Aug 2008 20:08:31 -0500:
    Yes you can use it as a media server and the WiFi is an Atheros AR5007EG.
    With antenna wires running through the top lid. And it works just as well as
    any other built in WiFi I ever used. And it plugs into the motherboard
    through an PCI-e slot.
    BillW50, Aug 25, 2008
  20. irfansmith

    BillW50 Guest

    In typed on Sun, 24 Aug 2008 20:08:32 -0500:
    Yes Thinkpads are great machines. And yes the EEE PC are very small and are
    no big deal to haul around. It is the most portable laptop I have ever used.
    BillW50, Aug 25, 2008
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