Dell Latitude E6400

I'm trying to negotiate a laptop purchase through the local IT department (who limit your options with what they will and won't support). I'm trying to keep the cost as close as possible to AUD$1500.

They offer: Lenovo T500, Dell E6400 or a MacBook/MacBookPro

For price reasons I am leaning towards the Dell, which will be configured with:
P8600 2.4GHz cpu
2x2GB DDR2 RAM (FSB 800MHz - unfortunately they don't offer 1066 yet)
14.1" WXGA+ screen
NVIDIA Quadro NVS 160M (256MB)
250GB HDD (7200rpm)
8x DVD +/- RW
and whatever miscellaneous crap they put in
this will cost AUD$1793 including GST (work will cover the first $1500 which is GST-exempt and I pay 10% GST on anything over this)

I am intending to order the 9-cell battery (I think the total should weigh ~3kg). Could someone confirm the weight?

Does anyone know what the battery life is like on the Dell? Are the others notably different?

Is the screen annoyingly glossy? I don't want to see reflections of the office lighting. It would be nice to be able to use it outside, but realistically I don't work out there very often.

IT refuse to modify the base Lenovo model which has only the integrated Intel graphics card which I suspect won't be enough to visualise the physics models I work with. It also costs AUD$1967.50

I am not sure that the modelling packages I use will run on the Macs, though there are probably versions compiled for Mac somewhere. Again, the Mac will likely be more expensive than I am prepared to pay.

Unfortunately, while I can happily get access to our networks etc for a personal laptop which is not bought through IT, I can't get the $1500 out of work to pay for anything other than their supported models.

If I am to convince work that their system is flawed, I need something solid like incomparable battery life or performance for computer modelling.

The system I would otherwise pick is probably the HP dv5 1138 with a possible RAM upgrade to 2x2GB, but that's currently not allowed.
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More about dell latitude e6400
  1. One person with a similarly spec'd Dell has told me that he gets 2.5-3 hours from a 9-cell battery running just windows xp and McAfee antivirus...

    Another with the HP dv5 1138 has told me that he gets 2.5-3 hours from a 6-cell battery, but he runs linux.
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