[Beowulf] Linux laptops, and M$ advertisement

Peter St. John peter.st.john at gmail.com
Mon Apr 16 11:22:59 PDT 2007

While looking around for a laptop I discovered that MS is paying Google for
the keyword "linux" to point to a "Get the Facts!" page (reminds me of
TheTruth.com) with testomonials about why MS is better than Linux for
clustering (!). What struck me was that I wasn't googling "linux cluster"
but just "linux notebook", yet the page is about MS cluster installations at
research facilitites.

The ad is http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver/facts/default.mspx?R=cf

The testamonials all seem to be equivalent to "I"m a PhD in Rocket Science
but setting up a Linux Cluster is too complex, so using MS saves me time to
do Rocket Science". None of them mention if their MS clusters were in any
way subsidized by MS. Also, I assume that essentially they are paying their
vendor to do the setup & support, and they don't say if that compares
economically to, say, paying Joe to do that, only that it saves them time
themselves. Sure, if I had that budget, I'd pay Joe and RGB to come and work
for me and I would have more time for other things.

Be all that as it may, I"m wondering what laptop to get. There are two
issues: one, that it used to be scary to get all the device drivers for
linux (maybe not anymore); and two, that one would prefer not to pay the tax
associated with the disk manufacturer contracting to preinstall Vista etc.
Toshiba, which used to be a fair linux platform IIRC, promotes itself as the
Premier Vista Notebook now (understandably).

I ran into http://www.linuxcertified.com/linux-laptop-lc2100.html via a
couple routes but of course it's a no-frills site, dunno what it wouuld be
like to find/get accessories etc. Anyone want to pitch me their laptop

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