Notebook for solo attorney

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.

1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?

2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
be worried?

3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
recommenede models?

Thanks to all.

Ken
13 answers Last reply
More about notebook solo attorney
  1. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    cagey <cagey91@hotmail.com> wrote:

    >I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
    >by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
    >there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
    >I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.
    >
    >1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
    >me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
    >home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
    >cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
    >which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
    >Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?

    Don't do laptops, so I'll stay out of the laptop recommendation
    business, except ...

    Yes, a docking station makes the most sense for you, IMHO; and
    ....

    >2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
    >Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
    >be worried?

    I would recommend buying two laptops, and having a desktop at
    home. All three to be kept synchronized with your crucial
    documents nightly over your home network. Sure as god made
    little green apples, one day, when you're due in court for the
    opening of a major case, your primary laptop will go south. With
    a back-up, you can still make the appearance without worry.

    >3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
    >been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
    >printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
    >recommenede models?

    My experience with all-in-ones is that they are never as good at
    any one of their individual tasks as a dedicated machine. That
    said, if you have a nearby Kinkos, your scanner/fax combo will
    make usable working copies, and you can use Kinkos/etc. for the
    major jobs [lawyers always charge the client for copies, anyway,
    don't they? ;->]. I would go with a standalone printer, and the
    best office-quality laser you can afford.

    [I've survived with my inkjet, but barely. The next HO printer I
    get will be a laser.]
    --
    OJ III
    [Email to Yahoo address may be burned before reading.
    Lower and crunch the sig and you'll net me at comcast.]
  2. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    "cagey" <cagey91@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:908ek052bc5q2ajlifheiesjks6eq9tsqa@4ax.com...
    >I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
    > by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
    > there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
    > I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.
    >
    > 1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
    > me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
    > home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
    > cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
    > which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
    > Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?
    >
    > 2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
    > Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
    > be worried?
    >
    > 3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
    > been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
    > printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
    > recommenede models?
    >
    > Thanks to all.
    >
    > Ken

    Ken,

    I'm a big Dell fan, but I do think that IBM laptops are superior. I have
    the ultralight Thinkpad X40 and love it. Under 3 pounds. A multifunction
    copier, etc. is fine.

    Get an external USB2 drive and backup DAILY!

    Tom
  3. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    On Tue, 14 Sep 2004 16:22:56 -0400, "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net>
    wrote:

    >
    >Ken,
    >
    >I'm a big Dell fan, but I do think that IBM laptops are superior. I have
    >the ultralight Thinkpad X40 and love it. Under 3 pounds. A multifunction
    >copier, etc. is fine.
    >
    >Get an external USB2 drive and backup DAILY!
    >
    >Tom

    Good advice. Once you get your laptop setup the way you like it, use
    Norton Ghost (http://www.symantec.com/sabu/ghost/ghost_personal/) to
    make an image of your laptop's drive on the external USB drive. If a
    catastrophy occurs and you lose the laptop or it is damaged, you can
    get a replacement and copy the image to it. Most people only take this
    advice after they've gone through the pain of losing a machine and
    data, be smart and backup, Ghost is very easy to use.
  4. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    For a printer, I just bought an HP 2300 (on the internet) for $560, and it
    is a great laser printer.

    I also have a Canon Model D780 , which is a combined digital
    copier and fax machine. It is super, and can be bought for about $600.

    I have a small business myself, and have never seen a need for a scanner. I
    think you would love the HP 2300 for laser printing, and the Canon D780 for
    digital copying and faxing. They both provide a lot of value for the
    price.

    Good Luck !!

    --James--
  5. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    cagey wrote:

    > I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
    > by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
    > there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
    > I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.
    >
    > 1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
    > me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
    > home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
    > cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
    > which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
    > Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?
    >
    > 2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
    > Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
    > be worried?
    >
    > 3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
    > been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
    > printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
    > recommenede models?
    >
    > Thanks to all.
    >
    > Ken
    1. Just be sure to have backups, one too hard drop of the laptop or someone
    else thinks your car looks like it might hold expensive stuff and its gone
    along with all your data. Being that you may have sensitive client info
    that your opponent could find helpful to his case you should consider
    setting the bios password that encrypts the data on the drive (most newer
    business machines have it). Stick with what the company uses and they will
    be more likely to help than if you have something different. I would make
    the guess that your firm issues people the Latitude C400 or D400, or maybe
    the x200/300 and the IT guys probably carry the C/D500/600 series.
    2. Inspiron and Latatude lines have different support lines and the
    difference can be night and day, you will notice that most who have
    problems with support have a"home" machine.
    3. They work, I'm partial to HP myself, couldn't even wear out my last one
    after 6 years and gave it away to someone else who still uses it and I have
    had my current one for 4 years.
  6. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    > 2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.

    In this instance some form of external (duplicated) storage *and* offsite
    backup would probably be a very good idea.

    Wouldn`t want you losing case files !

    Offsite backups come into their own if, for instance, there was a fire or
    the building is flooded while putting it out - thus rendering anything in
    the building soggy trash :-}

    Laptop hard drives are almost classed as "disposable" due to the range of
    conditions they may be subjected to, so its best not to tempt fate too
    much :-p

    --
    Please add "[newsgroup]" in the subject of any personal replies via email
    --- My new email address has "ngspamtrap" & @btinternet.com in it ;-) ---
  7. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    James Nipper wrote:
    >
    > For a printer, I just bought an HP 2300 (on the internet) for $560, and it
    > is a great laser printer.
    >
    > I also have a Canon Model D780 , which is a combined digital
    > copier and fax machine. It is super, and can be bought for about $600.
    >
    > I have a small business myself, and have never seen a need for a scanner. I
    > think you would love the HP 2300 for laser printing, and the Canon D780 for
    > digital copying and faxing. They both provide a lot of value for the
    > price.

    I've always been a big proponent of separate components. If you've got
    an all-in-one unit, and anything goes wrong, you're dead in the water.

    With money being tight, I'd seriously consider purchasing a separate
    fax machine, which can also be used as a backup scanner, copier or
    (sometimes a) printer.

    Notan
  8. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    computernewby wrote:
    >
    > Back in 1997 or so I bought a Dell Inspiron 3500 I believe it was.. Celeron
    > 366..great at the time...
    >
    > <snip>

    That'd be sometime after Jan. 4, 1999 for a 366 MHz Celeron.

    http://uk.geocities.com/magoos_universe/intel_history.htm

    Notan
  9. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    On Tue, 14 Sep 2004 12:54:39 -0400, cagey <cagey91@hotmail.com> wrote:

    >I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
    >by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
    >there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
    >I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.
    >
    >1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
    >me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
    >home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
    >cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
    >which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
    >Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?
    >
    >2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
    >Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
    >be worried?
    >
    >3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
    >been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
    >printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
    >recommenede models?
    >
    >Thanks to all.
    >
    >Ken

    I'm working in a similar situation except within the healthcare
    consulting genre. I opted to putchase a laptop for use away from home
    PLUS a desktop system for use within my home office. The office
    system has both an HP LaserJet AND an inexpensive HP 'all-in-one' that
    is used for faxes and as backup in case my DeskJet fails for some
    reason.

    Despite all the horror stories you read within this group I have found
    Dell's Support to be excellent. I opted for the Premium service on
    both systems, have used them several times all with excellent response
    and resolution of the problem.

    Similar to you I have no IT training so my reliance on Dell support is
    probably heavier than most. I have absolutely no complaints of any
    nature about the services provided.

    One craveat.... If you do opt for two systems, make certain that you
    do 'sync' both daily, and perform regular backups to ensure against
    loss of data.. I learned that the hard way.

    Good luck to you.

    Pixie
  10. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    I guess I am not as old as I thought..or maybe I am older.. Now that I
    think about it, I bought my boat to live on in 99 so of course you are
    correct. That is why I bought the laptop. I t must have been 1999 or
    2000. The thing I do recall is that I was all ready to get the 333 celeron
    and the next day the 366 just became available with a 6.4 gb harddrive...


    "Notan" <notan@ddress.com> wrote in message
    news:4147BAED.8AB5A340@ddress.com...
    > computernewby wrote:
    >>
    >> Back in 1997 or so I bought a Dell Inspiron 3500 I believe it was..
    >> Celeron
    >> 366..great at the time...
    >>
    >> <snip>
    >
    > That'd be sometime after Jan. 4, 1999 for a 366 MHz Celeron.
    >
    > http://uk.geocities.com/magoos_universe/intel_history.htm
    >
    > Notan
  11. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    computernewby wrote:
    >
    > I guess I am not as old as I thought..or maybe I am older.. Now that I
    > think about it, I bought my boat to live on in 99 so of course you are
    > correct. That is why I bought the laptop. I t must have been 1999 or
    > 2000. The thing I do recall is that I was all ready to get the 333 celeron
    > and the next day the 366 just became available with a 6.4 gb harddrive...

    If you're to the point that you can't tell whether you're older or younger,
    you're older! <g>

    Notan
  12. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    James Nipper wrote:

    >
    > For a printer, I just bought an HP 2300 (on the internet) for $560, and it
    > is a great laser printer.
    >
    > I also have a Canon Model D780 , which is a combined digital
    > copier and fax machine. It is super, and can be bought for about $600.
    >
    > I have a small business myself, and have never seen a need for a scanner. I
    > think you would love the HP 2300 for laser printing, and the Canon D780 for
    > digital copying and faxing. They both provide a lot of value for the
    > price.

    I bought a Brother MFC8220 all-in-one 2 months ago and really like it. I
    have almost no use for the scanner and don't put a heavy load on the
    unit (just home use). If you get an all-in-one (and I wouldn't
    automatically rule one out like many of the other posters) be sure to
    check the duty cycle. I would certainly get one with a laser print
    engine and think about flatbed vs. page scanner. The flatbed costs more,
    but is probably a better buy for an office where you may be
    copying/scanning bound documents/books often. Brother's bigger brother
    (no pun intended) to my all-in-one is the MFC8420, which includes a
    flatbed scanner (models are probably obsolete by now).

    Just my $0.02, HTH, not good in Iowa. ;)
  13. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    Tom Scales wrote:

    > "cagey" <cagey91@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    > news:908ek052bc5q2ajlifheiesjks6eq9tsqa@4ax.com...
    >
    >>I am an attorney in a large law firm who is going to go into business
    >>by myself. My current firm is all Dell (as am I at home). By myself,
    >>there will be no IT support, other than myself and what Dell offers.
    >>I would appreciate the group's advice with several questions.
    >>
    >>1. I think a notebook with a docking station makes the most sense for
    >>me - I will be able to use a keyboard, monitor, and bring my files
    >>home with me. I mostly use word, outlook, ie/mozilla. I do a lot of
    >>cutting and pasting of documents from the net. Recommendations on
    >>which notebook models/lines I should consider? Any advantages to
    >>Latitude vs. Inspiron to a solo like me?
    >>
    >>2. I will be by myself, so reliability will be absolutely critical.
    >>Dell's support seems to be taking a lot of lumps these days. Should I
    >>be worried?
    >>
    >>3. I currently send documents out in pdf format over the net. I have
    >>been thinking of buying an all-in-one device to combine
    >>printer/copier/scanner/fax ($'s are tight). Any pros, cons,
    >>recommenede models?
    >>
    >>Thanks to all.
    >>
    >>Ken
    >
    >
    > Ken,
    >
    > I'm a big Dell fan, but I do think that IBM laptops are superior. I have
    > the ultralight Thinkpad X40 and love it. Under 3 pounds. A multifunction
    > copier, etc. is fine.
    >
    > Get an external USB2 drive and backup DAILY!

    Good advice - also maintain off site backups in case your office burns
    down or is burgled. Think of your backup scheme as your practice and put
    into it whatever you think your practice is worth to you.
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