Thursday, August 10, 2006

Compaq Armada 6500

Manufacturer: Compaq
Model: Armada 6500
CPU: Pentium II Mobile, 400MHz
RAM: 512MB

Shown: stock photo

This was yet another "hand-me-down" from a friend. It competes rather well against any other portable I have (aside from the SuperSport, if you consider it portable) for battery life. I've been running OpenBSD on this, and it's my web/PHP design platform and security battlestation. It's loaded with tons of net-sec tools. If I'm out and about, you'll often see me using this laptop for internet access, because it offers a good balance of weight, run time, and processor speed.

When performing network vulnerability assessments, I usually use this laptop to do most of the testing, and rely on other machines for compiling the results and writing up the final reports. OpenBSD, X.Org, WindowMaker, and AbiWord work great together on it, but OpenOffice is a tad sluggish. Overall, it's a great workhorse despite it's occasional quirks (such as refusing to boot unless I disconnect the battery and boot it up off of A/C power only, once in a while). I wouldn't go out of my way to buy a used Armada 6500, let's put it that way. That said, it's been reliable for the most part, and well-supported by OpenBSD.

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