Best out-of-box working laptop for newbie to Fedora?

hi there! @joeyjonnson
like you i am new to Fedora (but have been using other versions of gnu/linux for many years) may I suggest you try hacking your macbook pro?
I have a macbook air (2015) which is happily running Fedora 38 - I have installed Kinoite (and as such have an issue with the webcam not working yet) but I believe this is not an issue if you are using non-immutable versions!

I believe (wherever possible) in reclaiming, repairing and restoring as much old, surplus and redundant or outdated ICT as is humanly possible !! and I find gnu/linux is ideal for this purpose.

also it does a damn fine job at curtailing consumerism and minimising waste!

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And floppy drive, cassette tape “drive” (with three free hexagonal pencils for tightening loose tape) … ? (Just joking, don’t get offended.) :innocent:

Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” (E.A.P.)

But: external cd/dvd drives are still on the market. For watching movies that someone got collected through last few decades, or dealing with Universities and their outdated regulations for submitting stuff.

oh the memories of pencils and sticky tape! xxx

Excellent thanks. So I think Ryzen 5 will do, 7 better, 9 probably out of my range but if not, even better. And so if i compare a Ryzen 5 with another Ryzen 5, the higher the ghz cited, the better. Sound about right? I just see all these variations of numbers (or maybe that was only intel) and it confused me. Glad if I can stick to speeds and more cores.

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I remember programming my tandy color computer with a cassette drive. :smiley:

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Thanks. I HATE waste. However I have also lost hours of my time and have no confidence in my Macbook Pro. I have already hacked it as mentioned earlier. I got everything working eventually (except webcam which is working, but not very nicely at all). I do’nt like all the hacks I had to do, because I DO NOT UNDERSTAND what I actually did. That’s the crux of the matter really. Getting stuff working is doable, if you keep trying suggestion of terminal commands found online. Eventually it all works, but I now have no idea how messed up my OS is, and when all my ‘hacks’ will go ‘poof’. I want a solid reliable machine, I have no time to learn to hack, I just want to use a working Linux install which stays as close to the official release as possible. My MBP won’t go to waste anyway, it’s about the tidiest you’ll find so it will be quite desirable. Thats actually why I am looking at new machines because I can fund it with that sale.

I remember feeling so naughty, recording live broadcast RADIO to a cassette, then breaking the tab so nobody could record over it. Proper pirate me. :smiley:

Off topic and we probably should curb the memories. :smiley:

Well, with Fedora You can stay totally official. (Some things from RPM Fusion are handy, though.) But keep in mind what Billy Idol said: “there’s nothing safe in this world …” :wink:

i’ve spotted this also in the past - my feeling is that its a generational thing! the i5 is an older chip but has had many releases where as the i7 is a newer chip.
also i think there are many refinements in relation to power management, under the hood of the i7 that are more than the Ghz

https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/processors/processor-numbers.html

Intro page is here, so enjoy. :slight_smile:

Every word is great (including hopefully in third point, hope dies last, no?) .

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Some experiences:

Old, secure, cool:
Thinkpad T420-T430, X230 etc. They support Coreboot and especially Heads.

When opening these machines up, its insane how modular they are. You can easily replace the charging socket, and so much more. Comparable to a Framework Laptop.

Acer Swift 5:
Very fast, huge rather easy to open up. One soldered RAM, one free. Only one m.2 ssd. Easy to install Linux on, but fprint sensor seems broken, keyboard is very buggy, bad drivers. Very nice BIOS that just works.

Thinkpad T495:
All drivers work well. No energysaving customization easily available on AMD. No virtualized GPU in VMs, VMs are nearly unusable. Pretty fast, awesome keyboard, good size, touchpad. Very bad camera and speakers. Backlit keyboard, webcam shutter.

Overall very nice but the BIOS sucks. It doesnt allow to live boot USBs currently, tried everything, totally crazy. The Bios also blocks another m.2 slot that could be used for an SSD, on purpose. It works, great though.

Other brands may be good too. Avoid NVIDIA, search if the GPU is some consumer crap that doesnt support virtualization on purpose. All CPUs are soldered, often only one RAM stick is replaceable.

If you want apple speeds, nothing can be replaceable probably, but that sucks.

Search in iFixit.com maybe

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This is a personal opinion and many swear by the quality of nvidia GPUs.
In my experience (over 20 years using nvidia) the only drawback is the user must install a proprietary driver in order to use the full device capability.

Sure. No wonder why their GPUs are present in many of https://top500.org/ systems. But @joeyjonnson wants to stay:

and:

So, stick with something simple to maintain.

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Thanks for the ideas and thoughts. Much appreciated.
I am now finding most the machines I am seeing in my price range (Thinkpads mainly) have Nvidia cards. I did find one with Intel HD 620 (whatever that is), not sure if that’s compatible with Linux.
Can I ask… if I did decide to have an Nvidia card, is it just a case of a ONE TIME set up with proprietary drivers (a few terminal commands), or will it need doing every time the OS updates/upgrades?
I am struggling to find machines without Nvidia, and if its just a one time setup routine, I can handle that if it means I get a much better machine (bang for buck). thanks

If you don’t need Nvidia (e.g., no graphics or AI intensive workloads), you should get better CPU, memory, screen, and mass storage for the same price). I the used laptop market, you can find “enterprise” models (being replaced by large enterprises because they don’t support Windows 11) at bargain prices. The money you save can be used to add RAM and SSD capacity, upgrade the network card, etc.

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Thanks but I don’t follow. I don’t know if i “need” Nvidia, is it good? One thing I will be doing is quite heavy image processing using Topaz (which needs a MIN of 4GB but ideally more than that).

I don’t understand the complex stuff enough, so I am having to take a stab. One thing that confuses the hell out of me is some really new and otherwise very high spec machines quote a processor speed of just 1.9ghz?! Trying to work out if a (for example) gen 7 intel i7 at 2.3ghz is ‘better’ (faster) than a gen 12 i7 at 1.7ghz?! Its so confusing.

I am trying to find machines without Nvidia as I believe that will need terminal commands (which I can do, if it only needs doing ONCE, and not after every OS update/uprgrade).

Oh and another confusing point - Can someone tell me …

Am I right in thinking :

  1. An SSD is faster than a HDD (I know that much already!)
  2. A PCIE SSD is faster than a non PCIE SSD
  3. An NVME PCIE SSD is the fastest of all.

Is that right?!

If you get a machine with an nvidia card, then install the drivers from the rpmfusion repo this is a one time action at the command line. Updates then happen automatically whenever the kernel or drivers are updated afterward while doing a normal update.

You are basically correct in the speed of storage.
SATA SSDs are faster than HDDs.
PCIe SSDs (also known as NVME) are the fastest since they do not use the sata controller.