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Thread: what is the better option, laptop or regular computer?

  1. #11
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    check it

    Quote Originally Posted by ecaandrew
    but im trying to figure how i would get the laptop to startup when the car starts?
    You could try using an inverter and the laptop's hibernate feature, ie set the laptop to hibernate when the battery level reaches below 75% etc. Then too kick in automatically when it is re-raised.

  2. #12
    Constant Bitrate megagoo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ufearme3
    You could try using an inverter and the laptop's hibernate feature, ie set the laptop to hibernate when the battery level reaches below 75% etc. Then too kick in automatically when it is re-raised.
    can anyoen confirm that this works?

  3. #13
    Constant Bitrate Big Zack's Avatar
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    An ideal setup would be...

    1. power your laptop via a switched input that disconnects when you turn your vehicle off and set the laptop to shutdown/hibernate after X minutes on battery.

    2. use a relay to activate the 'wake on ring' function built into most laptops to power it back on.

    This will allow you to power on the system when you start the car, leave it running on the batteries while your car is off for short amounts of time (gas station, etc) and power itself off after a set amount of time.

    I successfully tested this setup with an old Dell laptop, but unfortunately the Panasonic laptop I use now does not support WOR.

    - Z

  4. #14
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    Cool

    I'm planning a laptop install under my passenger seat... as for remote on/off, all the laptops I've ever had, uh, had a modem (RJ11) port--I was thinking I'd wire these two leads up to the motherboard (or on/off switch) to eliminate one more permanent connection--drop-in-carpooter! Momentary short of these wires--push-button, pulse relay, or just two wires hanging out of your dash a la Joe Dirt...
    I------Carpooter
    I------Progress
    I------Meter:
    I------
    I------0% - You can't screw up what you don't start.

  5. #15
    Newbie PapaSmurf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Zack
    An ideal setup would be...

    1. power your laptop via a switched input that disconnects when you turn your vehicle off and set the laptop to shutdown/hibernate after X minutes on battery.

    2. use a relay to activate the 'wake on ring' function built into most laptops to power it back on.
    - Z

    I have a few questions about using an extra laptop I have lying around...

    1 - If you use an inverter for power, does this constantly drain from the battery? I know if I plug my cell in my car lighter in the morning and come back later it is fully charged, won't this routine keep the laptop fully charged?

    2 - Wake on ring... how do you give the laptop a RING without having to do anything other than tun the car on?

    3 - Does anyone know if it is possible (specifically on DELL 500 Latitude) to either remove the screen or keep the computer on while the screen is shut? Mine seems to hibernate everytime I close the cover no matter what XP settings I use.

  6. #16
    Constant Bitrate Big Zack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PapaSmurf
    I have a few questions about using an extra laptop I have lying around...

    1 - If you use an inverter for power, does this constantly drain from the battery? I know if I plug my cell in my car lighter in the morning and come back later it is fully charged, won't this routine keep the laptop fully charged?
    Some vehicles power the lighter outlet all the time, and some only when the car is on (or in accessory mode). Yours seems to keep the power on all the time, so yes... it will keep your laptop fully charged. (It will also drain your car battery sooner or later!) You would need to rewire the outlet to use the switched power feed to your radio or some other device.

    2 - Wake on ring... how do you give the laptop a RING without having to do anything other than tun the car on?
    If I remember correct on my old Dell laptop all i had to do was provide +5v to pin 5 (or 6?) of the com port to activate WOR. Google for WOR or 'wake on ring' and see what you can find for your laptop.

    3 - Does anyone know if it is possible (specifically on DELL 500 Latitude) to either remove the screen or keep the computer on while the screen is shut? Mine seems to hibernate everytime I close the cover no matter what XP settings I use.
    some older Dells have a sleep switch around the hinge that has to be disconnected to keep that from happening. Try setting the sleep button press action to nothing in XP and see if that helps - if not, look for a little pin activated switch around the hinges.

    - Z

  7. #17
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    I have a dell latitude in my truck. I have 2 drives in it...on internally one in the select bay. 160 gigs. I have it in a mini docking station under the front drivers seat. I have the power switch on the docking station wired to a stitch up front to turn it on, I thought about WOR but this is just as easy and if for some reason it locks up I can hit the switch and reset it. I picked up an automobile power adapter for it off ebay for it to supply power, I wired it straight to the fuse box and there is a disconnect switch in line so I could switch off car battery and run off laptop battery if I wanted to. I run a display and use IRman to control it. I can shut it down completely with IRman and dont have to hack into the system to shut it down. Dell uses a small magnet in the lower bezel to send to off if you start it with the screen closed and no external VGA hooked to it. I removed the magnet...pretty simple...and went into power management and have the screen blank after a minute. runs perfect. CPI's are cheap and work really good and are bombproof. I have 19,000 songs and I use palm amp on a m515 to manage the play lists and search for a song. I am adding a xenarc for the GPS functions and to manage the music as well. I suppose there are cons to a laptop but none that I can find. I can add a PCI card to the docking station if need be...have built in lan USB serial etc. I can pop it out and take it with for portable music/media, it is quiet runs for about an hour with both drives on its own power. For me it is the way to go.

  8. #18
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    Okay, I'm as newbie as it gets (first post!).

    I have been researching Carputers for about a week now and inevitably mosts sites directed me here, so here I am to stay!

    After looking at both sides of this issue I'm leaning towards a laptop solution. I think I understand the WOR wiring. I'm guessing I can just splice a wire from the switched line in my radio harness and wire it directly to the +5v pin of my laptop modem, yes? And maybe I need to wire a ground? Or, by relay, do you mean a separate device?

    As for wiring the switched line for main power to laptop, I don't even have a guess at this point. Can it be wired to one of the pins on one of the ports or does it need to be solderd to some point on the mother board. Or (even better) is there an adapter I can buy to do this and maybe cut one side and wire it to the switched line.

    Please help. Thanks! Jim

  9. #19
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    DISREGARD! (actually, you were anyways ) I've decided to go in a new direction with an ITX PC instead of a laptop.

  10. #20
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    Dos anybody just make some kind of USB push button power switch?

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