[linux-elitists] Our little side project... Just Linux Hardware (dot com) (fwd)

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Wed Mar 26 17:01:00 CET 2003

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 21:24:24 +0000
From: Karsten M. Self <kmself at ix.netcom.com>
To: linux-elitists at zgp.org
Subject: Re: [linux-elitists] Our little side project... Just Linux
    Hardware (dot com)

on Wed, Mar 26, 2003 at 10:48:42AM -0500, Michael Bacarella (mbac at netgraft.com) wrote:
> Shopping for hardware is a chore.  For us elitists,
> it's especially bothersome because you have to investigate
> devices for Linux compatibility.
> This seems like a barrier to sale to me, so I thought about attacking the
> problem by building a site that only lists well supported
> Linux hardware, and provides links to purchasing it via
> affiliates.
> Here is the unborn unreleased please be gentle in criticism
> version we've come up with so far.
>     http://justlinuxhardware.com/
> Probably not a directly viable business model, but I still
> think it's worth me spending money on.  Consider, if the
> site is any good:
>     1. Shopping for Linux becomes a bit easier (hopefully?),
>     which is better for the community.
>     2. Vendors who support Linux are rewarded by increased sales.
>     3. Retailers who sell vendor's products are rewarded by increased sales.
>     4. Companies who haven't decided to support Linux yet can see
>     a real picture of what kind of business they're missing out on.
>     The invisible hand...
>     5. Companies in step #4 who want to develop a Linux strategy
>     have been introduced to an ally who can help them in their
>     quest.  And if this leads to work, I know a list or two of
>     consultants who may be able to help us out...
> What do you folks think?

Good idea.

In one category, at least, there are two tools which may be very useful.

Assessing whole systems (particularly laptops) is a crapshoot.  You
pretty much have to find out who's installed GNU/Linux on the same (or
often:  a similar) model.  And then hand-tweak to get the thing up and

Fortunately there are two tools which take a lot of the uncertainty out
of this picture.  One is bootable GNU/Linux systems with extensive
hardware autodetection (e.g.:  Knoppix).  The other are tools to extract
system capabilities and configuration, and dump this to a file.

I've written one such of the latter, called system-info.  There's a copy
at http://twiki.wethey.org/twiki/bin/view/Main/SystemInfoScript, along
with sample output.

This still isn't fully sufficient, though it's a good start.  Among
other settings that would be useful:

  - Suspend/hibernation & APM settings.
  - hdparm configs.
  - X configuration and/or spec.

Posting system specs and the output of system-info to a system review
site would be a strong positive step, and puts a minimal load on the
vendor (boot Knoppix, run script).  I'd love to see someone run with


Karsten M. Self <kmself at ix.netcom.com>        http://kmself.home.netcom.com/
 What Part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?
    "Life," said Marvin dolefully, "loathe it or ignore it, you can't
    like it."
    -- HHGTG

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