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LXE Laptops & Desktops Driver Download

LXE Laptops & Desktops Driver Download

(Redirected from Rugged laptop)

A rugged, or ruggedizedcomputer is a computer specifically designed to operate reliably in harsh usage environments and conditions, such as strong vibrations, extreme temperatures and wet or dusty conditions.[1] They are designed from inception for the type of rough use typified by these conditions, not just in the external housing but in the internal components and cooling arrangements as well.[2]

Typical environments for rugged laptops, tablet PCs and PDAs are public safety, field sales, field service, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, construction, transportation/distribution[3] and the military. They are used in the agricultural industries, and by individuals for outdoor recreation activities.

Construction[edit]

Virtually all rugged computers share an underlying design philosophy of providing a controlled environment for the installed electronics. Rugged computers are engineered to operate in the face of multiple challenges including:

  • Shock and Vibration
  • Temperature and humidity
  • Corrosion and abrasion
  • Minimal size, weight, and power (SWaP)
  • Acoustic noise reduction
  • Low pressure/altitude
  • Ingress Protection
Example of a MIL-STD-810 Certified, 1U Rugged Computer

Electronic components themselves may be selected for their ability to withstand higher and lower operating temperatures than typical commercial components. Design engineering decisions such as reduction of cabling, addition of liquid cooling and heat sinks, and rugged materials, are made to ensure performance in harsh environments.

Features include fully sealed keyboards to protect against intrusion by dust or liquids, and scratch-resistant screens that are readable in direct sunlight.[4]

Rugged units have higher prices. However, one research study found that in environments where rugged computers are commonly used, total cost of ownership was 36% lower for rugged notebooks and 33% less for handhelds and PDAs, compared to conventional non-rugged versions. The lower overall cost is due to lower failure rates, the related impact on productivity, and other factors.[5]

Laptops[edit]

A ruggedized laptop is built to operate reliably in dusty or wet environments and conditions. These computers have a thicker and stronger housing than a regular laptop, and are mainly used for industrial, construction and military purposes. Engineered to be mobile, they are vibration, shock, drop, dust and waterproof, yet are able to comply with other important requirements such as high performance and governmental grade security. They are equipped with both current and legacy I/O ports including serial, ExpressCard, PCMCIA, VGA, and others that are commonly used in outdoor environments. The levels of ruggedization are not standardized, but they are measured by various certifications such as MIL-STD-810, IP, or ATEX.

Tablets[edit]

A rugged computing tablet

A rugged tablet may be semi-rugged or fully rugged. The semi-rugged might have a protective case, rain-resistant body. Fully rugged tablets are engineered from the inside-out to work in extreme temperatures and other harsh conditions. They are designed to resist drops, shocks and vibrations while maintaining strength to be dust- and waterproof. A tablet has internally a solid state hard drive and no moving parts. Unlike many laptops, most tablets do not require a fan, improving their dust and water resistance. Many rugged ones have options such as a barcode scanner because they serve in the logistics and transport sector. Levels of ruggedization are measured by various certifications such as IP, MIL-STD-810 or ATEX.

Smartphones[edit]

A rugged smartphone

A rugged smartphone has a thicker and completely sealed housing which protects it against all kinds of elements such as water, dust, shock and vibration. This kind of smartphone can be left out in a sandstorm, frozen in a blizzard or go underwater. A true fully rugged smartphone is substantially less susceptible to damage than a non-rugged smartphone. Like a rugged tablet, it typically meets IP certification and military standard specifications for dust, shock, vibration, rain, humidity, solar radiation, altitude and temperature extremes. Only a few manufactures make a rugged smartphone due to its complicated structure, different use of material and high level of quality expectation. [6]

Some rugged smartphones have Push-to-Talk (PTT) capabilities, NFC and barcode reader functions which suit their use for industrial and construction logistics.

Standards[edit]

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  • MIL-STD-810: Specifically MIL-STD-810G CN1 (2014), a military standard, issued in 1962, which establishes a set of tests for determining equipment suitability to military operations. Often used as a reference in the commercial laptop industry.
  • MIL-STD-461: A United States Military Standard that describes how to test equipment for electromagnetic compatibility.
  • MIL-S-901: a military standard for shock which applies to equipment mounted on ships. Two levels apply. Grade A items are items which are essential to the safety and continued combat capability of the ship. Grade B items are items whose operation is not essential to the safety and combat capability of the ship but which could become a hazard to personnel, to Grade A items, or to the ship as a whole as a result of exposure to shock.[7] Qualification testing is performed on a barge floating in a pond where TNT is detonated at various distances and depths in the pond to impart shock to the barges.
  • IEEE 1156.1-1993 IEEE Standard Microcomputer Environmental Specifications for Computer Modules
  • IEEE 1613 Computers in electrical substations used to concentrate data or communicate with SCADA systems follow IEEE 1613 'Standard Environmental and Testing Requirements for Communications Networking Devices in Electric Power Substations.'
  • IP (Ingress Protection): seeIP Code
  • IS (Intrinsic Safety): seeIntrinsic safety
  • TEMPEST: seeTempest (codename)
  • ATEX (Potentially Explosive Atmospheres): seeEquipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres
  • NEMA (National Electrical Manufacturers Association)
  • IK Code (Also known as EN50102) seeEN 50102
  • European standard EN 50155, 'Railway Applications—Electronic Equipment Used On Rolling Stock', provides an example of a tough non-military specification. It extends operating temperature range (−25 – +70 °C), resistance to humidity, shocks, vibrations, radiation - encountered in vehicle or airborne installations.

Wireless connectivity[edit]

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Wireless capability is a key requirement for most enterprise mobility applications, and it has been reported that wireless-transmission failure rates are three times higher for non-rugged notebooks compared to rugged units.[dubious] This difference is attributed to the greater experience of rugged-notebook vendors at integrating multiple radios into their products. Each transmission failure leads to five to ten minutes in lost productivity as the user has to re-login to the company network through a VPN.[5][failed verification]

Since enterprises are turning to cellular networks to enable full-time connectivity for their users,[8] major vendors of rugged computers offer both built-in wireless LAN and wireless WAN capabilities,[5][9][10][11] and partner with cellular carriers, such as Verizon and AT&T, as part of their offerings.[12][13] During the handoff between the various wireless LAN and wireless WAN connections, a mobile VPN allows the connection to persist, creating an always-connected infrastructure that is simpler for the user and eliminates application crashes and data loss.[14]

See also[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rugged laptops.
Look up rugged in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

References[edit]

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  1. ^Rugged laptop computer for use in military ground vehicles and helicopters offered by General Dynamics Itronix - Military & Aerospace Electronics[dead link]
  2. ^What you need to know before purchasing a rugged mobile computerArchived 2011-10-14 at the Wayback Machine, LXE, 2004.
  3. ^Supply Chain Management. Panasonic.com. Retrieved 10-2-2013.
  4. ^How ruggedness reduces TCO for mobile computersArchived 2011-12-08 at the Wayback Machine, VDC Research, 2009.
  5. ^ abcTCO Insights on Rugged Mobile ComputersArchived 2013-08-24 at the Wayback Machine, VDC Research, 2007.
  6. ^'The Benefits Of Enabling Enterprise Mobility With Rugged Devices, 2017-10-16'. Archived from the original on 2017-10-24. Retrieved 2017-10-24.
  7. ^'Archived copy'(PDF). Archived from the original(PDF) on 2008-05-09. Retrieved 2008-05-09.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^Next Generation Rugged Handheld Device RequirementsArchived 2011-12-08 at the Wayback Machine, VDC Research, 2011.
  9. ^Rugged Laptops - Toughbook Mobile Computer Product Comparison
  10. ^Wireless Technical Info - Official Panasonic Toughbook Computers
  11. ^Rugged Notebook Computers with Integrated Wireless and GPS from General Dynamics Itronix, 'Wireless Capability by Product'Archived 2013-12-24 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^Wireless Computer Partners - Official Panasonic Toughbook Computers
  13. ^General Dynamics Itronix Wireless Activation CapabilitiesArchived 2013-12-24 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^General Dynamics Itronix Mobility XE Overview PageArchived 2011-09-26 at the Wayback Machine
Retrieved from 'https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Rugged_computer&oldid=1003788999'
LXE Marathon Field Computer

LXE uses open-book form factor for its new Windows-based rugged field computer
(by Conrad H. Blickenstorfer)

The LXE Marathon, introduced in November of 2010, bridges the gaps between PDAs, notebooks and tablets. It's a cross-over product somewhere between LXE's PDA-style handhelds and their vehicle-mount computers, and it also crosses the functionalities usually provided by either a Windows CE/Windows Mobile device, and one that runs full Windows. So what exactly is the LXE Marathon?

It is a tablet computer that also has a QWERTY keyboard. That's a lot of functionality to pack onto the surface of a ruggedized device with a footprint of just 8.1 x 7.8 inches. But LXE managed to do it while still providing a reasonably large display (7 inches diagonal) with acceptably high and nicely matched resolution (800 x 480 pixel), and a full keyboard that even includes a separate keypad.

Unlike some full keyboards we've seen on similar designs, LXE gave the Marathon a small 58%-scale version of a standard keyboard, and not one of those (often gimmicky) layouts that assumes users will thumbtype like on a giant Blackberry. This way, users will feel right at home on the Marathon's keyboard, small though it is, and it seems a good solution. There are also ten assignable function keys, and those always come in handy on tablet computers.

Under the hood, the Marathon employs the Intel Atom ciruitry that's been powering an increasing number of lightweight, fanless tablets, panels and similar devices that require adequate computing power while generating little heat and going easy on the battery. LXE chose the by now almost ubiquitous 1.6GHz Atom Z530, one of the first Atom processors released. The Z530 enjoys 'embedded' status, which means that Intel will support it for many years. Even combined with its US15W companion chip, this frugal chipset uses just about 5 watts.

On the ruggedness side, the Marathon specs indicate IP65 sealing, where the '6' means the device is totally dust-proof and the '5' that it can handle low-pressure water jets from all directions; the ability to survive multiple 4-foot drops to concrete; and it has a wide operating temperature range of 4 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit. LXE also lists additional ruggedness testing as well as numerous certifications (see specs).

The Marathon has adequate onboard connectivity (USB, audio), with much more available via external docks (desktop and vehicle cradles are available). There's 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1. AGPS is included, and there are internal antennas. The Marathon can be customized for various data collection tasks via an optional 2D imager, 2-megapixel AF camera (top-center on backside), and magnetic stripe reader.

While the Marathon concept is innovative and has plenty of application potential, there are some caveats. Despite the low-power Atom processor, the small standard battery is only good for 2.5 hours or so. That's enough if the unit is only occasionally removed from a dock, but not in the field. For that, LXE provides secondary 6 and 9-hour batteries that snap onto the back of the Marathon, extending thickness some. Outdoor users will want the optional transflective display as the standard transmissive display, while bright (400 nits), is primarily for warehousing and other indoor applications. The Marathon's resistive touch screen probably works well for custom apps, but Windows itself has never been a good match for resistive touch.

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Overall, the Marathon is a very good addition to LXE's lineup. Microsoft hasn't really done much with Windows CE for the past few years, and many applications now require full Windows 7 or XP. Though not a speed demon, the Atom Z530 has proven to be able to run full Windows implementations, and especially those based on embedded versions. LXE also is one of the few who offers such a 'cross-over' device (others are primarily the Panasonic U1, the DAP M8920, the DLI 8400, the Arbor Gladius 720, and the Black Diamond SwitchBack), and the LXE Marathon certainly adds a very attractive contender.

Below is a video describing the Marathon that LXE, which became part of Honeywell in 2011, released in September of 2011.