By Anne Chen  |  Posted 2006-07-31 Print this article Print

Media Drives

* What types of optical drives can be included?

• CD-RW/DVD combo

• Multiburner DVD recordable

Integrated Communications

* What types of radios or NICs can be integrated in the laptop?

• Modem

• Gigabit Ethernet

• Intel Pro/Wireless ABG

• Bluetooth

* Can the laptop be equipped with embedded WWAN (wireless WAN) capabilities? If yes, which service does the laptop use?

• Cingular HSDPA (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access)

• Verizon EvDO (Evolution Data Optimized)

• Either


* Please check all the ports available on the laptop:

• Infrared • Expansion bus

• External display • AC adapter

• RJ-11 • RJ-45

• Audio • Headphone/line-out

• External microphone • USB ports

* How many USB ports does the laptop support?

* Are the ports USB 1.0 or 2.0?


* Does the laptop support TPM (Trusted Platform Module)?

TPM is an integrated security component that allows users to create and store encryption keys. Microsofts forthcoming Vista operating system will use TPM technology as part of its BitLocker Drive Encryption feature. BitLocker will encrypt a computers entire volume for security. Laptops are at high risk for theft and loss, and pushing security down to the hardware level via TPM can be a much better solution than a simple BIOS password.

* Does the laptop have/support an integrated fingerprint reader?

* List and explain the client security solutions that are supported.

Keyboard and Mouse

* Is the keyboard full-sized? If not, what is reduced?

* Is there a TrackPoint mouse device?

* Is there a touch-pad mouse?

* Is a port replicator available? If so, how much is the port replicator?


* Which of the following slots does the laptop have?

• Type I/II PC Card

• Secure Digital

• Multimedia card reader

* If the laptop has a multimedia card reader, how many cards does the reader support?

Included Software

* In addition to the operating system, what software comes preloaded on the laptop? (Check all that apply.)

• Adobe Systems • Diskeepers Diskeeper Acrobat Reader Lite

• Google • Google Toolbar

• Google Desktop • Googles Picasa

• Anti-virus software • Power utilities

• Hard drive protection

• Multimedia software and applications


* When imaging the laptop, can an IT manager use the same image across all laptops purchased?

* What management tools, if any, come with the laptop?

Warranty and Support

* What is the warranty on? (Check all that apply.)

• The system

• The battery

• The port replicator (if included)

* How much does support cost?


* What is the price of a fully loaded machine? (List the components included at this price.)

* What is the price of a standard build? (List the components included at this price.)

* What is the price of a minimum build? (List the components included at this price.)

Which laptop is right for you? Check out eWEEK Labs latest reviews. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news in desktop and notebook computing.

As a senior writer for eWEEK Labs, Anne writes articles pertaining to IT professionals and the best practices for technology implementation. Anne covers the deployment issues and the business drivers related to technologies including databases, wireless, security and network operating systems. Anne joined eWeek in 1999 as a writer for eWeek's eBiz Strategies section before moving over to Labs in 2001. Prior to eWeek, she covered business and technology at the San Jose Mercury News and at the Contra Costa Times.

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