My old Linux powered Toshiba netbook, the NB205-N210, finally breathed it’s last spark of electricity on September 3rd, 2018. She put up a noble fight, but her small internal fan had given out and something was causing consistently random reboots / screen lockups. (probably from a failing internal power supply) It all just got to be too much, and I had to put her down, i.e. break it down and remove the hard drive and memory. This didn’t go nearly as smoothly as planned, but the result was all the same: a dead netbook, guts exposed.
Well, my strip down didn’t go nearly as smoothly. But I was happy to get a look at the inner workings of a mini laptop way past her expiration date.
I was sad to see her go. The last several months had me distro hopping and finally landing on Fedora LXDE, where I worked on my Red Hat commands for the LPIC-2. But when it came time to get a new machine I had my heart set on finally running Ubuntu Mate, and getting familiar with that distribution’s ecosystem.
Toshiba has been in some financial as of late, and their laptop/desktop business recently got sold off. So I decided to go to the mainland and get myself a Lenovo. They did not disappoint.
For around ¥45,000 (450 USD) I was able to get a significantly upgrade. Lenovo’s Ideapad 330s (slim) was perfectly suited for my needs. I opted for a 128 GB solid state hard drive since I don’t plan to store much media. Essential this is a MacBook Air clone, with slightly lower specs.
My first plan of action was to immediately immediately rid the hard drive of Windows 10. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to keystroke into the BIOS quickly enough. So I had to hear the horrible Japanese shrieks of Cortana trying to guide me through a Windows setup I had no intention of completing. Finally after a few minutes of pure proprietary hell, I was able to exit that process and reboot into my USB stick with Ubuntu MATE 18.04. From there the install went reasonably smoothly.
Aside from some minor tweaks to enable Fn key functionality and the occasionally troubleshoot for resuming from sleep/standby (a common Linux issue), this machine is a joy. In fact, this current post is the first that I can honestly say has been composed, soup to nuts, via free and open-source software.