A portable computer designed for hazardous duty such as found in police, fire, military and industrial applications. Commanding a price premium, they are essential in harsh environments but also advantageous in the everyday world where laptops are often dropped and damaged.
Semi-Rugged vs. Fully Rugged
A semi-rugged computer withstands harsh temperatures as well as extreme vibration such as in a vehicle riding over rough terrain. It can also handle a certain amount of water on the keyboard. Semi-rugged laptops are typically regular laptops with better cases, rubber-mounted hard drives and spill-proof keyboards.
Built with custom parts, a fully ruggedized PC, also called an "ultra-rugged PC," can be left out in the rain all night and be dropped three or more feet onto a cement floor. It may also offer a removable disk or solid state drive (SSD) for security. See ruggedized drive
An Earlier Rugged PC
Dolch's industrial portables were built with magnesium cases and shock-mounted components that let them withstand jolts that would disable ordinary portables. This ruggedized line was acquired by Germany-based Kontron AG and later Azonix (see Dolch
). (Image courtesy of Dolch Computer Systems, Inc.)