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Pros: No problems with the drives that didn't fail.
Cons: I bought 4 of these about 18 months ago, and 1 of them failed after a year of normal use. They were in a 4x2TB RAID-Z2 array, so nothing was lost. I started getting the occasional read error, and SMART showed that the drive was pretty much out of room to reallocate bad sectors.
I'm not quite sure if these drives actually support ATA secure erase. I ran a secure erase that seemed to only take 20s or so, which doesn't seem right, unless the drive hardware encrypts the drive and it just changes the key (Seagate Enterprise drives do this, but not in 20s.) My guess is that the drive just pretends to have erased the data.
Pros: - As you can see by the specs, it's very fast.
- Completely unlocked, so you can tune everything. The Asus 990FX R2.0 is a perfect motherboard for this chip. With the right cooling system, you can have an extremely fast box.
Cons: - The included cooler with the preapplied thermal compound can't handle all 8 cores at 90-100% with Turbo enabled for more than a few minutes (> 63C, ambient room temp ~21C,) even with quiet fan control disabled in BIOS. There isn't much else in the box generating heat, since the hard drives are mostly inactive at that time and I don't run graphics. Without Turbo the temp stabilizes at about 60C when all cores are at about 95%. Overclocking is completely out of the question without replacing the cooler.
- I don't think this CPU can handle RAM speeds higher than 1866, but I'm not entirely sure.
Other Thoughts: I don't have a lot of technical knowledge about CPUs, but I do know that high temps are bad and that high clock speeds are good. I'm running FreeBSD 9.1 with this CPU on a 990FX R2.0 motherboard. I have it set up as a server for running lengthy computations in parallel. It literally exists for me to compute as much as I can during a given time window.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - 2.5GHz hyperthreaded dual-core processor.
- 4GB of DDR3 1600.
- 7200RPM 500GB SATA 3.0 Gbps hard drive.
- 3 USB 3 ports, and a USB 2 port (which I needed for my wireless mouse to work with Linux.)
- POSTs faster than any computer I've owned in the past.
- Great wifi signal.
- Hardware works with Linux.
- Looks much nicer than the previous ThinkPad versions.
- Nonreflective display.
- Probably the best laptop keyboard I've ever used, as far as button shape, texture, and mechanics.
Cons: - No CapsLock indicator or keyboard backlight.
- Low-contrast display, but it's acceptable for working indoors. I wouldn't use it to watch movies or to edit pictures/video.
- No option to buy it without Windows. I turned it on long enough to get the DVD drive open, then I immediately rebooted to install Linux.
Other Thoughts: After ~10 years of putting a lot of money into laptops, I finally decided to go modest on the laptop build a server to handle all of my computational needs. I'm running Kubuntu 12.10 on this laptop and as far as I can tell all of the hardware is supported. I've been using it to edit documents (locally and remotely,) to ssh into my server to work remotely, and for various things on the web. That being said, this laptop was 1/3 the price of one I bought 2.5 years ago, and this one outdoes the old one in every way except for the display. Since I primarily use Linux, the hardware requirements of my OSes don't increase very much over the years, so this laptop is still youthful in "Linux years".READ FULL REVIEW