Just over a month ago I was introduced to Rob Braxman and the idea of deGoogled phones. Rob really opened my eyes about privacy, and a couple of weeks ago, Linux started to seem not very scary, and very, very useful.
I struggled for a couple of weeks deciding which laptop to buy (I’ve been using an iPad as a laptop for way too long), and Rob narrowed it down for me in his 2019 4th Quarter video on Best Privacy Laptops.
I easily vetted the Mark IV as a possible choice, then realized I had better consider other models, too. A few people on Brax.Me recommended System76, so I reviewed Galago Pro and Darter Pro carefully, and – not caring too much about price – I quickly realized the Darter Pro was within very easy reach. After looking at specs and reading about lifetime support, Darter knocked itself into first place.
Ready to buy the Darter. OK. Aware of my impulsive nature. OK. Thought it was a good idea just to review the Librem 14", so I built a 3-column spreadsheet comparing specs and prices of all three machines. It forced me to pay attention. Boy, was I surprised.
After I included a reasonable amount of add-ons on the Librem – knowing not to go crazy, but make sure I had the power and memory for the work I will do – the Librem 14" I built in my shopping cart was only $90 more than the Darter I had configured. I was stunned. Rob speaks well of all three, but put Librem in first place for privacy.
So Librem easily brushed Darter out of the top spot, and I move some money into the right accounts and started getting serious about a purchase. At that point, I looked again at memory for the software I’d be using, and realized I should upgrade to 32GB. At this point it made a lot of sense (and the price difference was still negligible).
Then I read Librem was on backorder. Cr@p.
This is when my “wise side” talked myself back down to Earth, realizing that even a LabTop III or IV would suit me perfectly well. And being impulsive and impatient, I decided I didn’t want to wait so long, and that moving forward with something (and it would be something wonderful) would make me happy.
So I began getting an order put together for the Mark IV. And darn, also on backorder.
Now I was jacked up to buy, money was ready, and I knew I’d be waiting either way.
So this was my solution: I spoke to my brother who just got interested in Linux and privacy as well, and is buying new home, and needs a new computer, and I told him I would buy the LabTop for him and his wife as a house-warming present (with a specially gifted VM of Windows 10 Professional just for her), use it while I set it up for him, and order a Librem 14" for myself. So Monday I ordered his Mk IV and this morning I ordered my L14.
I should be a rascal and pit the two companies against each other to see which one delivers the fastest, but I probably won’t. Instead, I’m taking on the study plan I will need to get my brother’s computer up and running the way it should be, learn from that experience, then set up my own Librem when it arrives. Or, if it comes first, the other way around.
A month under Rob’s tutelage and two weeks of orientation to Linux, and I ordered two laptops in three days.
I’m not crazy, I promise. This is going to work out GREAT!
— Privacy, yay.