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Dell to Showcase New Instant-On Desktop Systems

By - Source: Tom's Hardware | B 7 comments

Want to be more productive? Get back to work faster? Probably not, but Dell has a solution for businesses that want you to be. Next week consumers will get a first look at Dell’s new Instant-On system for Latitude laptops.

Instant-On technology will give users instant access to data and major applications without booting up the computer. By doing so, this will allow users to function with e-mail and documents without engaging the CPU and therefore using far less energy.

Dell is promising its customers ‘multi-day’ battery life for new models of its Latitude line – dubbed with the name ‘Latitude On’ according to Jeff Clarke, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Dell Product Group. No details on when the ‘Latitude On’ would be released. However, Clarke did disclose some details of the system back in August of this year – claiming the system will run a Linux variant and a secondary chip, in order to extend battery life. You can watch the video containing some of the disclosures on YouTube here.

The Instant-On feature sounds a lot like Dell Media Direct, a partition that was pre-configured on select Dell systems that allowed you to listen to music and watch videos without having to boot into the operating system – sounds like they have utilized this idea and just bumped it up a notch, actually making it useful this time around.

Dell has the Latitude E4200 and E4300 listed on their site with the ’Latitude On’ feature. Dell’s description of the feature is as follows:

Instant Connectivity Enjoy instant access to email, calendar and internet with the new Dell Latitude ONTM communication module. Dell Latitude ON enables bi-directional remote access to your Microsoft Exchange data with the single touch of a button without booting or waking your entire laptop—lowering power consumption and extending battery life.

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  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 22, 2008 8:26 PM
    Sounds much like Asus' Splashtop.
    but now it uses a separate CPU to boot.. strange...
  • 0 Hide
    cruiseoveride , October 22, 2008 9:23 PM
    probably an embedded linux solution
  • 0 Hide
    JonnyDough , October 22, 2008 10:25 PM
    "The Instant-On feature sounds a lot like Dell Media Direct, a partition that was pre-configured on select Dell systems that allowed you to listen to music and watch videos without having to boot into the operating system"

    I don't know if it was Dell that came up with this idea. It may have been around before Dell was. Back in 1997 or so I recall that my math teacher had a computer with a "CD" button or something that would allow you to boot into DOS and play a CD from a program without booting into the OS. Even though I remember it from about 1997, I think his computer may have been a few years older than that. If anyone might know anything about this please inform us of it. I'd like to know more.
  • Display all 7 comments.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 22, 2008 10:44 PM
    on viewing the video it seems like a blackberry like OS, running from a separate processor.

    A little like from the time when the Intel Core Solo platforms where created, with 2 separate CPU's.

    only this time,a setting for low power (linux OS), and one for high power (the normal OS).
    So in essence it would be the same principle as a splashtop.
    Dell would have better spend time on how to boost the booting process of the pc (like for instance have a highspeed flash memory allocated to store a hybernation file in or something...
  • 0 Hide
    Darkk , October 23, 2008 3:08 AM
    My HP laptop does have the ability to play DVD movies without booting up windows. It got a Linux partition with DVD player software already installed. Pretty cool.
  • 0 Hide
    derek2006 , October 23, 2008 5:12 AM
    ProDigit80on viewing the video it seems like a blackberry like OS, running from a separate processor.A little like from the time when the Intel Core Solo platforms where created, with 2 separate CPU's.only this time,a setting for low power (linux OS), and one for high power (the normal OS).So in essence it would be the same principle as a splashtop.Dell would have better spend time on how to boost the booting process of the pc (like for instance have a highspeed flash memory allocated to store a hybernation file in or something...


    I had a old windows 95 PC that could do something like that. When trying to play games it could actually reboot and not ever start up the operating system. This allows the game to have full access to the hardware. I suspect they don't do this anymore because hardware is so diverse.
  • 0 Hide
    hemelskonijn , October 23, 2008 12:09 PM
    JonnyDough:

    Some good old advanced 486DX4 mobo's supported a dual bios setup (some even mouse controlled) you could switch between the two bios with a dip switch or a jumper.
    It would not be that hard to use the jumper pins to connect a button and start from the second BIOS chip wich in turn could make sure some minimalistic media player os.
    He would have to be a genius to program all the stuff in a two meg rom though its not impossible for as far as i can see.
    Less genius but still impressive would be letting the second BIOS boot a hard drive floppy drive usb drive or whatever in stead of the regular hard drive.
    And now i think of it ... since we already had those nice looking mouse controlled BIOS there might have been a chip bakery (or customiser) that just sold a solution based on it.