Free 500 USD laptop proposal

Paul van der Vlis paul at
Sun Nov 23 23:42:10 UTC 2014

Hello Paul Hänsch and others,

Op 23-11-14 om 23:39 schreef Paul Hänsch:
> Paul van der Vlis <paul at>, Sun 2014-11-23 23:06:
>> u-open-to-the-core-laptop
> I don't get this point:
> ""quote --
> - 128 GB SSD (this would be the one component that might have to be 
> proprietary as I’m not aware of another option)
> -- ""
> Don't notebook SSDs appear as standerdised SATA disks these days? I've 
> never experienced any trouble with this class of device. Could imagine 
> that the internal ROM firmware is proprietary, but this should be the 
> case for a lot of the components (even when the loadable part of the 
> firmware is free).

A SSD has it's own processor and firmware, and that's always non-free so
far I know.

But when you build it into a laptop, you may call the laptop FSF-free,
so far I know.

> The specs are not high end. In this vicinity I could also recommend some 
> of the contemporary Chromebooks. Most of them run with coreboot by 
> default. The hardware of some models[1] runs out of the box with 100% 
> Free distros. 

Interesting, so the Acer Chromebook C720. Do you have an exact
type-number of what you use?  There is a version with touchscreen too,
do you know more about it?  Do you know more of such Chromebook devices
what work fine with free distro's?

The Chromebook C720 is supported from Linux 3.17, but many people will
use an older kernel. And you get problems when the accu is really empty
because you cannot boot anymore:

> The processors are similar to the Intel Core series, but 
> usually branded as Intel Pentium or intel Celeron, those names take some 
> getting used to. Wikipedia has a very useful ressource[1] in this 
> regard.
> Just stay away from the ARM Chromebooks, they depend on proprietary 
> graphic acceleration (the unaccelerated graphics delivered by the Free 
> driver isn't worth your money).

Thanks for that information.

With regards,
Paul van der Vlis.

> [1]Using the Acer C720 myself, but the specs are lower than the proposed 
>    notebook
> [2]
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Paul van der Vlis Linux systeembeheer, Groningen

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