How to Select the Best Rugged Portable Computer System for Industrial Applications?

Written by Preeti Nath

With all the rapid advancements occurring in the IT industry, rugged portable computer systems are quickly evolving into high powered, battle ready mini-systems. If you need a portable computer system for industrial or military applications, there are now many great options you to consider, from high quality, feature-rich, highly expensive portable computers to budget options still outfitted with the basic necessities.

But what should you really be looking for in terms of performance and features? Should you focus more on performance or resilience? We will take a look at the answers to these and many other questions below.

Performance and Technical Specs

As in the case with regular computer systems, more is always better when it comes to the amount of memory, speed and storage space that the rugged computer you buy has to offer. Faster speeds ensure improved processing power and compatibility with the latest industrial applications. Also, with a larger amount of storage space you can store all the data you need on the computer itself, without relying on cloud-based storage solutions.

When it comes to performance and computing power, you should always be aware of the following details and technical specifications:

  • The processor’s performance and its ability to execute a large number of programs simultaneously (often, more processing cores equals greater performance);
  • The overall speed of the computer – dictated by processing speed, amount of RAM, speed of RAM and the maximum data transfer speeds supported by the hard drive or SSD;
  • The amount of space available on the portable computer system for storing data, largely determined by the amount of space available on the hard drive after the operating system has been installed;
  • The computer’s accessibility and compatibility with other systems, generally determined by the number of ports it features, such as USB, serial ports and various other connections it can support for linking it with industrial equipment, larger screens or other computer systems.

Portability Considerations

Also known as a lunchbox computer, a portable rugged computer can be a great asset in situations when you have to haul your computer from one application or location to the next, or when it’s not practical to carry along a separate screen or keyboard.

Size and weight are the main issues regarding portability. The computer you buy has to have the right dimensions to fit into the containers and transportation vehicles you will be using, and it should be light enough for most people to carry, so that it doesn’t require special handlers.

Also, it’s important to be able to set up your portable computer anywhere you need it. Stability and architecture are, therefore, a key consideration. Sometimes it’s better to go with a classic form factor over something more stylish. Of course, you’ll need to make sure that your computer has all the necessary peripherals, connectivity options and components that you will need for your specific use case.

How Rugged Should Your Computer System Be?

Finally, you need to think about your portable system’s ruggedness. This factor will be determined by the specific conditions the system will be facing.

Do you have to take it to high altitudes of over 10,000 feet? Will it have to operate under extreme climates with temperatures higher than 100 degrees C or lower than -12? Or maybe the humidity, air pressure and other conditions you have to operate in are suboptimal. Regardless of the requirements you have, these days there are high quality rugged portable computer systems available to fit almost every need and specification imaginable.



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Preeti Nath

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