Vintage Laptop Collecting?

Hmmn, looks like I have a collection of vintage laptops now. I never really thought about it because I only bought the one Thinkpad T21 at a thrift store, and the rest have been given to me because they “didn’t work” in some way or were replaced by newer machines and weren’t wanted anymore. The size of my collection only became apparent to me when someone brought me 5 more, ranging in vintage from 1996 (Pentium 75) up to fairly recent (Core i3) saying I could keep ’em if I DoD-wiped the drives.

Wipin’ the drive for this Dell Inspiron (Pentium 4). Battery test looks great. turns out the battery holds almost 2 hrs charge. Windows XP Awesome SP3 goes on this one, mainly because it has no wireless card which might’ve barely made it worth running Lubuntu. This machine shall never touch the internet again.

I’ve never heard of a Canon branded PC-Compatible computer before, but here’s one from 1996 – A Canon Innovabook 360CD. Like typewriters, the case of a laptop can protect a machine from the worst neglect. This machine had sat in a shed in shallow water for lord knows how long, but the machine is basically pristine other than the battery not holding a charge and a water-damaged user manual.

Wow, 8mb of RAM. I’ll load FreeDOS 1.2 on this one, cause that ain’t enough to run Win 95. Maybe throw Win 3.1.1 on there too.

Updated: October 31, 2019 — 12:21 am


Add a Comment
  1. Wow, thems some old computin’ irons.

  2. Have fun with the old PCs. The old ones without an OS may run Damn Small Linux unless you have old copies of DOS around. LXLE (Lubuntu based) may work too depending on RAM and uPC clock.

    Speaking of Linux, my latest install told me on the first line after starting the installer ‘this is not a typewriter’. I’ll be posting about it. BTW default UN on Lubuntu LXLE is qwerty, and it too will tell you it is not a typewriter.

    There is always freeBSD.

  3. A computer that shall never touch the Internet again … that’s almost inconceivable today.

  4. Never thought I’d see the day someone said a computer couldn’t even run Windows 95.

    Also got a laugh out of “Derik’s Boot and Nuke”.

    1. well, it *can* run Win95, because it currently does. However 5 minute bootups aren’t my thing, and W95 starts caching to disk pretty quickly with only 8mb RAM. It’s not enjoyable, and these are basically toys for enjoyment.

      Derik’s disk wiping utility is part of UBCD (Ultimate Boot CD), along with loads of other useful things. I recommend it highly (:

  5. It’s an interesting area. I do know that TA Triumph-Adler brought out an Alphatronic personal computer in 1979. Not a laptop, but it just shows the direction most of the big office equipment companies were headed (in both the east and the west). ;)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.