I've been wanting to get an ultrarugged laptop for a while, because I need certain features that I have on my desktop, but I also want some level of portability for some projects I'm working on. Ideally, I'd want something that has

  • At least one serial port
  • Ethernet
  • At least a handful of USB ports
  • Capable of running a modern Linux distribution
  • CD / DVD drive

I don't care about the screen (resolution, size, etc.), the memory (although I'd prefer 8Gb as a baseline) or even storage space, GPU or CPU really. As long as the device can run a mostly casual load without lagging. The following items would be a nice bonus as well:

  • PC card support
  • List item

Now the kicker is I'm not looking to may for something new. I understand these are typically for industrial use and can get rather expensive, so I'm certainly not opposed to older product lines. I don't have a real budget set, but I'd like to not spend $5k+ on a device, and would honestly like to keep things below $2k if possible. If I could find one for under $1k that'd be perfect, but I understand it may not be possible.

1 Answer 1


It might be slightly off, but Cd/DVD is the issue here. the step motors required to run to the um exact is hardly achieved on something that has to survive a lot, it takes too much space. Although most industrial applications do not require watching movies... If you can part with DVD then you can just look for toughbook on e-bay. As these are used by many armies around the world you can often get one under 1K. Second point is the distros DE. I have been Running XFCE On mine ancient CF-19 and only replacing it because I have melted battery sitting too close to fire and need more then two screens. (want to go HDMI)

  • I'll take a look at them. The primary purpose for CD/DVD is for grabbing software that's distributed on them (I have a good bit of older software). Worse case I can use an external drive or rip them on another machine and transfer.
    – an earwig
    Commented Dec 30, 2020 at 3:40
  • You can use usb drive for when needed. if software needs monted CD, then you can get an image. as far as Linux is concerned, CD is just an image that responds slower...
    – Tomas
    Commented Jan 1, 2021 at 19:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.