April 24, 2019

Hot Rodding Your Slightly Dated Laptop For Fun and Profit

Wrenching On A Laptop?

  • November 18, 2002
  • By Rob Reilly

Are you skittish about putting Linux on your laptop because the installation will be hard and it will be tough to find the right drivers? Are you worried that you're going to be limited to command-line based applications, especially on that old corporate laptop that moves like molasses under the weight of XP? Do you have big reservations about putting a brand new $2500 2.0-Ghz whiz-bang laptop on the X-ray belt at the airport?

Fear not, fellow computer mechanics.

You can put that slightly used road warrior back into service with a new lease on life using Linux and a few laptop performance secrets. With certain modifications you can expect to be able to run the Linux desktop/window manager of your choice (including KDE, Gnome or IceWM), an SQL server, Apache, Samba, OpenOffice.org, 5 or 6 Xterms and not really even break a sweat. I was happily computing away just yesterday with 80 processes showing up on top!

My hot-rodding tips apply to just about any recent laptop. You may also be surprised to hear that there are some real disadvantages to running the latest and greatest when it comes to laptops. I'll explain those later.

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