I know you've had a few replies, but FWIW...
Until October '99, buy brother was a sales rep for http://www.datacomsystems.com They had Compaq Armada laptops for the sales persons and would not buy them again.
He is now the NY/New England rep for http://www.lurhq.com They've bought 10 Toshiba Tecra 8000 series in the last 16 months and more than a few have died--fatally. They would not buy again. These are not user errors, as there are a good few brilliant techs at lurhq. At the moment they're building a state-of-the-art NOC. These lads talk like rednecks but know their shite.
IBM...I've beta tested the i series and used one they sent to me as a "giftie." I sent it back to them. Wouldn't run NT, had a Winmodem and was overall a bow-wow (Celery 366.) LCD quality wanted to make me go look for a rope and hang meself. Apparently the 390 series and business-class machines from IBM are OK, but even my mentor Murphy has given them up for.....
No customer service, but good hardware. Run Linux, NT, BeOS, HP-UX, Solaris, AIX...all easy with no pain on install. I would imagine it could also run Grasshopper Linux but have not yet tried *lol*
In any case, good luck. My recommendation is VAIO.
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