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    God save me from Lenovo pre-installed software…

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      I think the real benefit here is Lenovo seems to now give a shit about making their hardware work well Linux, and maybe, just maybe, they’ll push that hardware support upstream so folks who don’t want to run the distro this ships with can still benefit from it.

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        Exactly my thoughts. I’m using a T540p at work with Debian on it, but the hardware support is pretty shitty. Lots of power management problems, display driver had problems in the beginning and so on. It also took years for Debian on my x230 to support the built-in microphone. So maybe with this, that fabled “good Linux support” will finally become actually true for these models.

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          RHEL7 on my T540p “just worked“, years ago. Although I hated the laptop so didn’t use it for very long. When people have problems with a particular Linux on a particular laptop, sometimes it’s the laptop, but sometimes perhaps the distribution. Or somewhere in the middle.

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            That’s weird, you’d expect this to be more or less the same across distros (as long as they use the same kernel version and X drivers)

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              You’ve put your finger on it: they probably aren’t using the same kernel and X drivers.

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              You hated a T540p ? Don’t answer.

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                Not OP but I had to use one for a little while. I hated it due to keyboard and touchpad. Lenovo touchpads of the era were so terrible they should have just left them off and stuck to the trackpoint. A janky touchpad with half-assed palm rejection degraded the experience.

                And I just can’t deal with the off-center typing that 10key forces on a laptop that size.

                Otherwise it was great, but I couldn’t get past those two things.

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                  Ok!

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              I hope for this too! Having an X1 Extreme with Ubuntu 18.04 for 1 year being the worst Linux experience in 25 of using Linux. I have to say until this I avoided Hardware that didn’t have good Linux support. Will boycott Nvidia for the rest of my life.

              Just would have hoped that Lenovo would have a notebook with same form factor and physical aspects (15”, centered keyboard, hi resolution) but without Nvidia.

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            I would never have paid the Windows Tax on my Thinkpad (X395), if I had an alternative. This is an alternative. This is great news.

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              The article never says that the tax will be deducted though. I’m presuming (and hoping) that they would, seeing as it would be the ethical thing to do, but from a money-making perspective an operating system selector with no price difference would make more sense.

              Here’s hoping.

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                I’m assuming lots of people would still prefer that money went to Lenovo instead of Microsoft.

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                  The question in my mind is always whether Microsoft’s contracts with PC vendors require the money to go to them whether or not the customer chooses Windows or something else.

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                    I think they are not allowed that anymore here in the EU.

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                  The article never says that the tax will be deducted though.

                  Presumably, Red Hat is doing this for monetary gain. So if the “tax” went to Red Hat instead of Microsoft, I’d be a happy man indeed.

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                    Lenovo and IBM have been corporate BFFs for a very long time, it’s entirely likely that this is a joint venture with benefits to each party and no actual money changing hands.

                    Anyway it would be weird if RH/IBM got any money for this since Fedora is a community project. They could certainly charge for RHEL but that isn’t mentioned here.

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                      Well, the whole ThinkPad line was born at IBM, I’m not surprised.

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                  Just curious - what is the battery life?

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                    Like your average laptop user, I seldom actually use it in battery, but I do a full cycle (or close to it) on battery once in a while. 5 to 10h depending on usage. Arch Linux with i3 wm.

                    I mostly blame the browser… I’ve got several windows with hundreds of tabs open at all times. Mostly per-topic documentation. Browsers use a lot of cpu time even when not looking at them these days.

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                      Browsers are half the OS these days, from the users perspective. And for your average user, likely not found here among lobsters, it’s way more then half. (In my opinion).

                      But that’s not why I’m replying. I’m curious as to how can you live and why do you live with hundreds of tabs? When’s the last time you opened, say, 74th tab from the right? Did you try to find another workflow or are you happy with what you have?

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                        I’ve gone through all sorts of workflows, but this is what works for me.

                        Lots of windows for different topics. Switch windows (which are themselves tabs on i3), switch topics. Most of them are full of references.

                        I actually do cleanup passes, when I finish something. The windows shrink or fatten as needed.

                        And of course, I do use an extension to detect/zap dups.

                        Current tab count is 221.

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                          Cool, thanks for the reply. It’s interesting and fascinating, but when you think about it (well, when I read your explanation of it), it’s not that you hold 221 things in your head, you just know the top-level topics, and then as you work on a topic, you can move among tabs.

                          I still don’t think I could do it. Probably because I don’t have such needs.

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                            Organizing tabs used to be easier, too. I remember firefox tab groups, back in the day.

                            There might be some extension which could help save/restore entire windows full of tabs, rather than keeping all these windows open. Investigating what’s available in tab organization extensions has been on my tasklist for years, but I’ve procrastinated this far.

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                  This is also good news for people like me who installed Fedora 32 on a Windows-taxed ThinkPad: it means there is some semblance of corporate backing to ensure the specific combination of ThinkPad and Fedora works!

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                    If Lenovo would only provide driver support for the missing bits and force its suppliers to push their firmware updates through LVFS

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                      I had to install Windows to update the buggy trackpad firmware in my X1C7 recently, which was extremely inconvenient.

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                      Here’s to not paying for a Windows install I’ll never use!

                      I suspect I’ll need a new machine later this year so this is great for me.

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                        As long as it isn’t as unstable as the Ubuntu x Thinkpad partnership.

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                          How is that these days? It’s been about 6 years since I last ran Ubuntu on a Thinkpad.

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                            For what my experience is worth, I have a X1 Extreme hi resolution. It was a nightmare to get it work. To use external displays didn’t work. When the BIOS was set to hybrid graphics, it didn’t work.

                            In the end it worked, but I have sacrificed so much of my time that I would wish to use for something else.

                            And when it finally worked, I had the worst input lag since the beginning of my Linux experience (95). Just typing in a terminal window was so bad, that I was constantly making typos! I guess it was Ubuntu’s switch to Gnome + using 3D where a good 2D would be enough.

                            The battery time is terrible. I am happy if I can make through 2h on battery.

                            Switched now to NixOS. Fighting the hardware issues too. But my hope is, that when I fought through this, I will be in piece for some time. Ubuntu was serving me for 15 years and I am grateful for this. It’s time for something better.

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                              That’s concerning. I’m considering an X1 Carbon if Apple doesn’t raise the 13” MacBook Pro memory to 32 GB this year. I’ve used a Mac laptop for myself for 12 years now and for work for 8 of the last 10 — two years on a Thinkpad with “Open Client for Debian Community” i.e. IBM’s Ubuntu spin — with much adoration. 16 GB is slowing me down. I’m too much of a multitasker these days and find myself more often using my 32 GB desktop gaming rig running Windows or my work laptop that is a 15-in MacBook Pro 32 GB.

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                                That being said, Fedora (stock) on an X1 Carbon works very well (I’m using it to type this, and at $dayjob).

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                                  I didn’t have a single hardware issue in my thinkpad with fedora. It’s not an X1, but in my experience, Fedoraand ThinkPad are a good match.

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                                  Don’t get me wrong, I am using ThinkPads for over 20 years now and I will continue. I will just avoid ThinkPads with NVidia inside. However when I decided to buy the X1E (1st gen) I did it partially because it was certified to be Ubuntu compatible! I already had doubts, and I had actually before one ThinkPad with NVidia, but on that one I could use the Intel GPU for external displays, so the NVidia was just a waste of weight and energy, but at least I could do work. On this one however I cannot use external screens without somehow making this NVidia, Hybrid, BumbleBee, Prime whatever stuff working. It steals so much of my time.

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                                    X1 carbon is great. The extreme has Nvidia graphics which are a tire fire.

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                                      I thought Nvidia + Linux was <3? Did that change in the twenty teens?

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                              Great news! Also, surprised to see the amount of people here that don’t have the option of buying a laptop without an OS…

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                                There aren’t many OEMs that will sell you consumer laptops without Windows on them.

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                                  I have one from Tuxedo which is… fine. (which looks like it’s the same whitelabel machines as system76 sells).

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                                    I was just looking at a Tuxedo this week. I’m trying to talk myself into spending some serious money on a new laptop, and while I’d love a ThinkPad, giving some love to companies pushing linux seems great. Maybe I’ll wait to see what comes out of this Lenovo-RedHat story.

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                                      Well I’ve just drooled over the P53 again. I think I will start selling out hardware around the house to collect some money for this, when it becomes available.

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                                It’s 2020, we still don’t have a good Linux laptop which competes with Macbooks yet.

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                                  What about Dell XPS Developer Edition?

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                                    13” is a bit small for the developer version.

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                                      They also have the Precision with Ubuntu pre-installed. It’s the XPS15 with better hardware under the hood IIRC.

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                                    Thinkpads compete just fine. In fact, they beat Macbooks outright. I cannot find a single flaw with the T495s I’m typing this on. Incredible battery life, sharp screen, good keyboard and trackpad, a decent number of ports, good cooling, lightweight and portable. Personally I like the aesthetics of the Thinkpad more than the Macbook’s too, but that’s subjective.

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                                      Thinkpads compete just fine. In fact, they beat Macbooks outright.

                                      As someone who happily chooses to use a ThinkPad T480 after many years of using Apple laptops, I disagree vehemently. I bought mine when my macbook pro died and the only new Apple replacements were the terrible keyboard, touchbar endowed models that maxed out at 16GB RAM. That didn’t work for me, so I went T480.

                                      The screen is a downgrade. The keyboard is an upgrade. The touchpad is a cruel joke. Fortunately, I can just turn the touchpad off and use the trackpoint. Battery life is better. The cooling is worse. CPU throttles regularly. I may open it up and re-paste it; I hear that helps.

                                      Getting Linux to work well on it was bumpy. I use Fedora. Setting up disk encryption so that it worked across two drives was a royal PITA. I still have to hold my jaw just right when I plug or unplug my thunderbolt 3 docking station. Most of the time I choose to shutdown first. Resolution scaling doesn’t work half as well as it did on Mac. Jetbrains tools can lock up the entire gui. The wired ethernet adapter on the Lenovo thunderbolt dock is hideously slow; it’s actually faster to use wifi. Multiple displays still suck compared to Mac.

                                      Make no mistake. I like this machine, and am happier overall with it than I was with my macbook setup. It wins for me, as a software developer, on balance. Especially when I consider that, when I bought it, this $2100 rig would’ve cost $3500 for something from Apple with half the RAM but a faster CPU and SSD.

                                      But there’s no way I’d say it wins outright. Even if you gave me a week to tweak Linux the best I could, I could not hand it to any of my Macbook-toting friends (who are not software developers) and expect them to have a better experience with my hand tweaked thinkpad than they have out of the box on their Macbook.

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                                        The screen is a downgrade

                                        I strongly prefer the matte screen on the Thinkpads. I also got the 400nit low-power screen and its colour range is incredible. I have use Macbooks before briefly and they definitely have good screens (especially so 5-6 years ago, when they had the highest res screens in laptops), but my T495s’ screen is equally good, if not better, thanks to it being matte.

                                        The touchpad is a cruel joke

                                        Touchpads are the one thing that Macbooks have an edge in and I’ll admit that. But the T495s’ touchpad is nowhere near that and I like it a lot. I also use the trackpoint a lot; took a while to get used to, but it’s quite powerful.

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                                          I strongly prefer the matte screen on the Thinkpads.

                                          While I think, based on looking over the shoulders of colleagues, that Apple has gotten the anti-glare coating on their glossy screens good enough that I could happily use them, I was comparing my T480’s screen to my (2011 or 2012?) MBP17’s matte 1920x1200 screen that it replaced. That MBP17 was by quite some distance my favorite laptop screen ever. If I could get that keyboard/battery/trackpad/screen with a modern motherboard, I’d happily do so.

                                          Based on your description of the 495, it sounds like they improved the matte screen between the T480 and the T495. I’d rate the 480’s as passable but not great.

                                          They may also have improved the touchpad; the T480’s touchpad makes me understand why so many Thinkpad users hate touchpads. (Or maybe Apple ruined me for those.) I like the trackpoint a great deal, though, so I’m happy as long as I can disable the touchpad. And I actually don’t run it fully disabled these days. I have all of its “click” functionality turned off, set its scrolling to two finger only mode, and use it like a big scroll wheel so that my trackpoint middle button functions like a traditional middle mouse button. I’m pretty happy with that.

                                          I really love the giant external battery on the T480. I routinely get 12 hours of heavy VMware usage or 22+ hours of browsing/editing usage with the 72Wh. I’m disappointed and annoyed that they seem to have discontinued this feature on the 490 series, and really hope they bring it back.

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                                        Same question: what’s the battery life on Linux?

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                                          I consistently get 9-10 hours and I haven’t even bothered to optimise it.

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                                            To add another datapoint for you, on my T480 with the big 72Wh rear battery, I see 12-ish hours of heavy compiling/VM testing usage. 22+ hours of browsing and text editing. I’m running Fedora 31 with powertop and tlp packages to manage power, but no manual customization on those.

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                                        I’d probably still reformat it, but good for Fedora! I would love to see it gain popularity wrt Ubuntu as a beginner-friendly OS.

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                                          I’d be a bit skeptical with this information. Since almost two years ago, the lenovo website seems to offer P-series laptops with either ubuntu or fedora pre-installed. While this is announced in the configuration page, it is actually impossible to buy them in the end (at least for me). Has anybody managed to buy one of these mythical thinkpads without windows?