Considering a Dedicated Windows Laptop for Ham Radio...

Discussion in 'Computers, Hardware, and Operating Systems' started by N2PPK, Sep 18, 2017.

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  1. N2PPK

    N2PPK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've been a Mac user for years and years, however, I've noticed that ham radio is one hobby that is less-than-ideal for running a Mac.

    So I'm looking at getting an inexpensive Windows PC for pretty much dedicated ham radio use. Looking to use Logging Software, WSJT-X and rig control software, or maybe just Ham Radio Deluxe. Also looking for programming some HT's.

    Looks like just about any modern computer with 4GB or more of RAM should do the trick. Anything in particular that I should consider? I'll admit I've been out of the Windows game for a good long time.

    Something along the lines of this refurbished model: https://www.bestbuy.com/site/lenovo...00gb-hard-drive-black/5581184.p?skuId=5581184

    Thoughts?
     
  2. VE3ZYR

    VE3ZYR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've been carrying that model- x220 around all day in my tool bag for the past couple years at work(field service) and have had no issues other than my battery is on its last legs.
    I do have a radio dedicated laptop at home, a T410, but all it does is run a Flex3000. I don't use any of that other radio software though, so I can't help with that. I have programmed my radio with "CHIRP" - not on Windows.
     
  3. AF7XT

    AF7XT Ham Member QRZ Page

    CF-30CQQACBM - OS: Linux 3.13.0-37-generic/i686 - Distro: Linux Mint 17.1 Rebecca - CPU: 2 x Intel Core Duo (1000.000 MHz) (Throttled a bit for battery consumption reasons, normally 1.6MHz)- Processes: 680 - Uptime: 242d 5h 40m - Users: 3 - Load Average: 0.73 - Memory Usage: 1860.68MB/3273.84MB (56.83%) - Disk Usage: 62.20GB/71.63GB (86.83%)

    A Panasonic CF-30 ToughBook . If you can't find one cheap, ask. Major expense is the Ram and Hard Drive. One of my boys calls it "life proof" . The above isn't too hard to decipher. gig clock, bit over 3g of ram (expandable to 5 with correct memory and installation ) 75g HD ...

    Brutal construction and a list of options like , rubberized emmissive keeboard, daylight screen, gps, cdma(sierra wireless), real serial port, docks are available. If it ever quits working as a computer it's still a boat anchor or lethal weapon .
     
  4. K1ABX

    K1ABX Ham Member QRZ Page

    VirtualBox :)
     
    AF7XT likes this.
  5. AF7XT

    AF7XT Ham Member QRZ Page

    ^^^^^ another dedicated *nix user :)
     
  6. WF7A

    WF7A Subscriber QRZ Page

    If it's not a hardware limitation there's always Fusion 8.x so you can run Windows software on your Mac; I use it (for everything but ham radio only because I currently don't have one) and it's great: https://www.vmware.com/products/fusion.html . However, you will need a copy of Windows (and a license key for it) to install with it.
     
  7. K5UNX

    K5UNX XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have a dedicated ham laptop. Since I can't decide if I want to use Win or Linus, I have it setup as dual boot. I think I'll use mostly Linux except with I need to use the RT Systems programming software on Windows.
     
  8. N2PPK

    N2PPK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Definitely a hardware limitation... I'm running a 2013 MacBook Pro on it's last legs. It's limited to surfing the internet these days as just about anything else will below it up.
     
  9. K1ABX

    K1ABX Ham Member QRZ Page

    There might be a couple of alternative approaches to this problem. A lot of Windows applications may work fine with wine, especially if everything they do
    is accessing sound card or a serial port (I had limited success with that last one though). In addition, there is a project called ReactOS. I haven't tested it as of lately,
    but it may also work for a lot of things pretty well - it's an open source OS that implements all Windows APIs natively.
     
  10. N2PPK

    N2PPK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I most likely would end up doing the same eventually.
     

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