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Date:      Fri, 10 Jul 2009 09:54:35 -0700
From:      Charlie Kester <corky1951@comcast.net>
To:        freebsd-questions@freebsd.org
Subject:   Re: Advise for buying a Refurbished machine
Message-ID:  <20090710165435.GB75160@comcast.net>
In-Reply-To: <alpine.BSF.2.00.0907101609230.1019@wojtek.tensor.gdynia.pl>
References:  <SNT111-W3704042797D0F4453DF7ACB2270@phx.gbl> <200907100703.n6A73MFx058873@banyan.cs.ait.ac.th> <alpine.BSF.2.00.0907101609230.1019@wojtek.tensor.gdynia.pl>

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On Fri 10 Jul 2009 at 07:10:20 PDT Wojciech Puchar wrote:
>>You have to ponder the fact that notebook are always fragile machines:
>>
>>- they are moved around often, so more subject to miss handeling (a
>> notebook is more likely to fall from your lap than a desktop is
>> likely to fall from your desk)
>>
>>- they are compact, less ventilation, more subject to over heating =>
>> component aging faster
>>
>>- they use smaller components, so less robusts
>
>And the newer notebook is - the more cheaply it's made.. If you have
>old and new laptop, most probably new one will break first ;)

In my experience, electronic parts fail within a year of manufacture if
they're going to fail at all.  Heat-related problems are mainly of two
kinds: bad solder joints and parts that are drawing more current than
they're spec'd to do.  Both kinds of problems usually shake out in the
first year.

Mechanical problems, otoh, are the bane of portable devices.  If I were
buying a used notebook, I'd take a close look at the hinges, switches,
keyboard and any other moving parts.  I'd factor in the cost of a new
harddrive as it's very likely to need one -- if not now, soon.  

I've also had numerous problems with the sockets for the AC adaptor
plug. I think that design was intended for stationary devices, not
devices that you're holding on your lap and moving around a lot while
they're plugged in.  (Not to mention tripping over the cord!)  After a
while they seem to come loose and the plug no longer makes good contact.
In one case, I had to open up the machine and resolder the socket to
the board. 



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