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Pros: A nice business-class laptop, fast and responsive, and quiet. Easy access to the memory and disk drive and other upgradeable parts. Sturdy, well-made magnesium case.
Cons: With all these features, a fingerprint scanner should have been included.
Other Thoughts: OK, here are the details: The packing list indicates that this computer is known as an E6430 version 469-4268. Search the internet and you will find out lots about this model.
1) The OS is indeed W7pro 64-bit.
2) The keyboard IS backlit.
3) The included 4 Gb stick of memory is Samsung M471B5273EB0--YK0, rated at 1.35V. I replaced it with Crucial CT2KIT51264BF160B. Works like a charm.
4) I still don't know if the connections are SATA III. Probably are.
5) I can't find a caddy offered by Dell. Bought one from China, which came with a cable. Now I have 3 hard disks connected, and could even connect more through the USB 3.0 ports. WOW!
6) Computer came with 3 disks: one W7pro system recovery DVD, one DVD with drivers and utilities, and one CD with webcam software. All on the last two were of course preinstalled.
One thing I missed from my old laptop was a right-angled power plug to take strain off the power cord. Adapters are available--look for "LC90. adapter". This model also comes with a small "joy-stick" pointing device nestled among the G,H,and B keyboard keys. I miss my old fingerprint scanner. One is available for this model, but not included in this version. Sometimes Nvidia graphics don't play well with Linux, but I have verified that Kubuntu 13.04 runs fine from the live CD. I think that the Linux community has found a way to provide a substitute for the Optimus graphics-switching software which is needed to take advantage of the Nvidia hardware present in this laptop.
All in all, this is a fine computer. I lost some capabilities from my previous laptop, but gained some with this one, and I would recommend this computer to anyone who could be happy with its features.
Pros: This is a good computer, with lots of features, and reasonable expansion capability.
Cons: This is a model with lots of features, which should have included a fingerprint scanner.
Other Thoughts: Here are some answers to my previous questions:
The packing slip identified this E6430 model as version 469-4268. If you Google this number, you will find lots of descriptions of this particular laptop.
1) The OS is indeed Windows 7 Pro 64-bit.
2) This model has a back-lit keyboard.
3) The included memory is Samsung M471B5273EB0-YK0, rated for 1.35V. I replaced it with 2x4Gb of Crucial CT2KIT51264BF160B, also 1.35V. Works great!
4) Still can't confirm that the disk support is sata III. Probably is.
5) I can't find the HD "caddy" offered on the Dell site. I ordered one from China, with cable, and it works fine.
6) Three disks come with the computer: An OS reinstallation-DVD, a resource media DVD with device drivers and utilities, and a resource media CD with webcam software.
Further comments: This computer has an alternate pointing device ("joy stick") in the form of a small button nestled among the G,H,and B keys on the keyboard. I was disappointed that no fingerprint scanner came with this computer. Also, the power cable plugs directly into the rear of the computer. I ordered a right-angle adapter (search for LC90B) from the web which takes the strain off the power cord connection. Although good graphics support is not always available in Linux for Nvidia products, I verified that Kubuntu boots up fine from the 13..04 live CD. I also understand that the Linux community has found ways to satisfactorily cope with the Optimus graphic-switching software present in this computer.
All in all, I am very pleased with this computer. I lost some features from my previous laptop, but gained some too, and on balance I think I have a better computer.
Pros: Don't know yet.
Cons: Incomplete information (see below)
Other Thoughts: There are questions you should be concerned about before you order this computer:
1) Is the W7 OS 32-bit or 64-bit? If it is 32-bit, can you easily change it to 64-bit?
2) A backlit keyboard is an option on this computer. Does this version have one?
3) Be aware that the 4 Gb memory comes in one stick. Dual channel computers work better with 2 sticks.
4) Can this computer make use of a SSD?
5) Did you know that you can order a HD "caddy" which will allow you to exchange the DVD drive for a 2nd hard disk?
6) Do OS recovery DVD and driver CD come with this computer?
It would be nice to know the answers to these questions before you order, and I should have realized that I didn't know the answers to them before I ordered! If you order directly from the manufacturer, you can specify these items in the order. I will report back and edit this post after I receive my computer and try to answer as many of these questions as I can.
Some manufacturers place restrictions on how details of their products may be communicated.