February 16, 2019

Pavilion, SUSE Make for Great Portable 64-Bit Computing - page 5

Why Put a Year-Old Distro on a Brand New 64-bit Notebook?

  • May 12, 2005
  • By Rob Reilly

Yes, I'll admit it, there were a few outstanding things that don't quite work. Fortunately, it's just a list of non-showstoppers.

  • The iwlist and ifconfig commands need to be used each time you move the machine to a new wireless access point/network.
  • Mozilla doesn't play Flash videos (there is no Flash 64-bit build). Luckily, Flash (32-bit version) works under Konqueror, which is installed by default.
  • Oggs, MP3s and play-list won't start XMMS automatically from Mozilla, even after modifying the mime-types.
  • Movie DVD's don't play with standard Xine due to licensing issues under SUSE. Perhaps readers can download and install Xine from the web, to solve the problem.
  • Audio control buttons on front of notebook don't work.
  • The wireless light flashes according to data transmission (It continuously lit up under XP and the on/off button function works). Be warned, if you turn wireless off with the button, you will have to restart networking (rcnetwork restart) to make it work again.
  • I don't know if the memory card slots work, because I didn't try it.

That said, the performance of the HP 5460 and SUSE Linux 9.2 is outstanding.

Everything happens right now. Imagine Web pages that appear practically as soon as you get done clicking on a link. Or ripping CDs in a matter of minutes, instead of an hour. Configuring or adding software with SUSE's YaST installer is much less aggravating, since you don't have to wait for new screens or the database searches, anymore. Animations in OpenOffice.org Impress are a thousand times (well, hundreds anyway) smoother than on my antique laptop. There is no waiting to do work in The GIMP. KB3 recorded both CDs and DVDs quickly and flawlessly.

The notebook is very obviously faster on Linux (64-bit) than on Windows (32-bit), even to the most casual observer.

You might argue that I've been out of touch with new hardware for quite a while. That may be true, considering my craggy old laptop. All I can say is that after a week of testing, I've been extremely happy with the performance. And that's on a year-old version of SUSE Linux. I'm chomping at the bit to put SUSE 9.3 on this machine.

Upgrades will include bumping up to 2 GB of memory and a 100+ GB, 7200 RPM drive, maybe in a year or two.

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